Most of us start life with the impression that we’re pretty much gods. Nothing irrevocably bad is ever going to happen to us and whatever trifling issues do come our way can be easily overcome with pluck and panache. But the world has all kinds of inventive ways (subtle and brutal both) to disabuse us of those notions. So as we become smarter, stronger and wiser, we begin to realise just how ignorant, helpless and bereft of answers we really are. There’s nothing actually wrong with this, but it does make you wish that you had even just a fraction of the power you believed was yours as a kid. Who wouldn’t give up the unmagnificent lives of adults for the sparkling world of a child-god?
Caption: Once, I felt invincible with an oaken bokutō in hand.
A three quarter back profile of the person in the first panel, now a grown man in samurai armour. He wears an ōdachi across his back. He is watching his two young sons spar with bokutō in a dojo. His expression is pleased and proud.
Caption: Now, with three feet of jewel steel at my back
He is posed exactly the same, but his expression is now sombre. The dojo is wrecked and burned, his sons lie dead on the floor.
Caption: I am always afraid.