From The Secret Life of the Geisha
we learn the difference
between Gee-sha and Gay-sha
is less than sublime.
Im-properly pronounced Gee-sha
is a Japanese B-girl or whore
while properly pronounced Gay-sha
is a Japanese courtesan
in the Greek sense.
the thriving Gee-sha
number in the hundreds
of thousands while
in Tokyo, less than one-hundred Gay-sha
ply their trade.
To train a Gay-sha
costs as much as a carrier pilot
or three doctors,
and she practices every day, life long
dance, grace, charm and topics of the day.
Gay-sha dress to the teeth
in bright, embroidered kimonos
whose colors reflect the seasons.
Groups of men pay up to five-hundred dollars an hour
to mingle with a Gay-sha
and the wives feel no resentment,
because Gay-sha relaxes the spirit
invigorates the male persona.
Conversely, the Gee-sha relaxes the groin.
The Gay-sha, like all art,
requires sophistication to be appreciated
but the Gee-sha, like the government's
new base metal coin
appeals to the multitudes.
A similitude of the original--
thriving on the original's reputation--
dominates the market place.
(previously published in VeRT, 2003)