This book is about my life, from my birth to the present. The format is essentially chronological covering my childhood years of the twenties, the Great Depression years of the thirties, the World War II years of the forties, and the postwar years to the present. However, it is not a straight narrative because it is a collection of vignettes that highlight certain events and moments of my life. These pieces were originally written at different points in my life, covering timely events or recollecting events of the past. So the chronology is sometimes blurred, the time jumping back and forth like flashbacks within a flashback. Through this "cinematic" method I hope to achieve a kind of impressionistic whole of my life story. Included also are poems which add a different perspective. Life wasn't always grim; there was some levity that leavened the days. - Hiroshi Kashiwagi Swimming in the American" was awarded the 2005 American Book Award.