The Continued Adventures of Momotarō

All was well and good in Japan, thanks to Momotarō, who was Number One in Japan.

“I am Number One in Japan!” cried Momotarō.

“That is true,” said the dog.

“We can rape anything we wish!” said the monkey.

“I am not so sure,” said the pheasant.

“What do you mean!” shouted Momotarō. “We raped many Oni women.”

“That’s true, we did!” agreed the dog.

“It is true you are Number One in Japan,” said the pheasant, wisely. “But what of Asia? What of the world?”

And just when the pheasant said that, there was a great shaking of the earth and sky. The dog began to bark and the monkey cackle and the pheasant took flight. Only Momotarō stood his ground.

“What could that be?” yipped the dog. “I will fight it!”

“I will rape it!” said the monkey.

“What will we do?” squawked the pheasant.

“I am Momotarō!” shouted Momotarō. “I am Number One in Japan! I fear nothing!”

It was then, they saw it. A great white Oni emerged from the sea and belched black smoke into the clouds, turning the sky of Japan black.

“I REQUIRE FOOD,” rumbled the great white Oni. “FEED ME.”

Momotarō looked up at the great white Oni and his fiery breath of smoke, and was wise. He showed the great white Oni the biggest rice fields in all of Japan and the great white Oni sucked them dry.

“I WILL RETURN,” said the great white Oni, and he disappeared back into the sea.

“What will we do?” whined the dog.

“Were we just raped?” cried the monkey.

“I must think!” shouted Momotarō, and the animals were silent.

At last, the pheasant spoke: “Great Momotarō, we have seen an Oni, not of blue or red, but of white.”

“White is good!” barked the dog.

“White is right!” cackled the monkey.

“Yes,” said wise Momotarō. “This was a powerful Oni.”

“There are many such Oni,” said the pheasant. “They are not like the Oni of Onigashima.”

And so Momotarō and the dog and the monkey and the pheasant prepared themselves. They found white clay and rubbed in on their skin and fur. They found dark weeds and smoked them and smoked them until their breaths turned black.

The following season, the earth and sky once again began to shake, and from the sea rose two great white Oni belching black smoke into the air.

“WE ARE HUNGRY,” said the great white Oni. “FEED US.” And the two great white Oni looked down and were surprised by what they saw.

“I am Momotarō Smith!” cried Momotarō Smith. “I am Number One in Panasia!”

And the two great white Oni saw it to be true, and finally respected Japan forever.



Akutagawa Ryūnosuke (1892–1927), author of “Rashōmon”, satires the classic Japanese fairy tale, “Momotarō”


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