published on 6/12/1997, translated by FUKUISHI JUNIOR HIGHSCHOOL SASEBO (12/21/2005)

I was 19 years old. In April of that year, I entered the pharmaceutical department attached to the Nagasaki Medical College, which is now the pharmaceutical department of Nagasaki University. I took up lodging in Hamaguchi-machi. The lectures weren’t satisfactory because the war situation was getting worse and worse. I worked at the Mitsubishi Electric Company in Nagasaki as a mobilized student.

On the ninth, I went to the factory at half past eight in the morning. From 10:50 it was break time. I heard that a bomb had fallen in Hiroshima and caused great damage. At eleven o’clock work resumed. An intense purple and white light flashed before my eyes, the windows crashed and the roof collapsed. Shrieks and groans of wounded people were vibrating from all over. The foreman, who had been by the window, had blood all over his face from the fragments of broken glass. A massive iron pillar collapsed from the back and crashed on me with great force. I’m sure that it must have caused terrible damage. I went out enduring much pain. Many injured people were lying outside. I couldn’t find even one classmate, although my classmates should have been there. Because I was less injured than everyone else, I was asked to carry the wounded people. There were various people injured in different ways: bloodied by glass, broken arms and legs, burnt and festered skin. Permission was given to us to leave the factory around 3 o’clock in the afternoon. I decided to go to Takeo in Saga Prefecture since my family had been evacuated there. I left in the direction of Michinoo. Many houses were burning violently, showering me with sparks. I ran through the backyard of Nagasaki Ironworks, crossed Ohashi Ball Park and climbed up to the railroad track. There were many bodies strewn here and there on the ground.

Walking along the tracks, I arrived at Michinoo Station past seven in the evening. I stayed at a school where emergency food was being served. The next day I jumped on a train carrying the wounded, and changed trains at Isahaya Station and proceeded to Hizen-yamaguchi. I went home on foot from there. Around two in the morning on the eleventh I reach Takeo in a tattered state. I told my mother that an enormous bomb had been dropped on Nagasaki and that I had managed to escape. As soon as I told her, I fell asleep. I had severe diarrhea for two weeks. My boarding house near the hypocenter was gone. The woman who ran the boarding house and her daughter, two of my friends, were missing. Afterwards I heard that another friend had died.


We must not permit the use of nuclear weapons ever again. The bitter lessons of the cruel atomic bomb experience must not fade away; they must be handed down as historic truth to future generations.


大隈直之さん(1997/6/12掲載) 翻訳・佐世保市立福石中(2005/12/21)