Say goodbye

After thirty years of following the rules, I rebel. It’s not spirited disagreement that I feel with the status quo, but fatigue. It dogs me like a lump of flesh, like a shadow. I go to the supermarket in sunglasses and without a bra. I fight to get a word in. I stick out my tongue at the fluttering Fata Morgana on the horizon.

Why does everything end before I can say goodbye? I want to do more with my time. I forget to eat. I do my taxes. I rant and rave like someone chained to a metal ring in a hole. At night, I fall asleep thinking—



I drink red water and bleed green blood. No, that’s not right—

In Akihabara, that twilight wasteland, an ad pasted on a brick wall on the other side of the road catches my eye. I shift position to get a better look, to decipher its meaning. In capitals, the words “EAT ME” and, directly underneath, a bug-eyed, pale-faced girl with permed, sticky-looking hair and telescoping lashes. I do a full-180, turning around completely, and see, on my side of the road, directly parallel to the ad, a vending machine in garish colors with its own lettering: “FEED ME”.

Eat me and feed me. At eight in the evening, after a long day, I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry. In my ears, a throaty guitar-string sound that is like slitting something ancient open.

Planet of towers, waves, and claret-colored skies. This heart does not eat nor feed. These heart never felt like a home. I open your letter and see you wrote the wrong thing, and you know it, and I know it. No, that’s not right—

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