Tokyo Girls in Science Fiction

by Kyle Hemmings


Let's say you know so little about me. Like whose idea of a joke to name me Hideo for excellent male. Or why I hang out at Triangle Park, ogling expatriates or crusty punks. Say I'm wheelchair bound since a hit-and-run by a weekend lover, all ambition, anti-Potter Power, strategic tattoos of Sex Maniac Revenge. My legs stay numb, but my brain is full of twitching centipedes. You can see them smile in my eyes. A day job making animations, little chiba animals that fight dragons disguised as people. I'm sure you've known some. And in a stream, I sometimes watch the reflections, the shape shifters, werewolves without human pitch, girls in fruit-punch frill skirts singing Gaga. Everything disappears in its reflection. Then you appear.


Sitting on the bench next to me. We talk about the stupid talent shows and the men straining to sing like boys. We joke that you're a werewolf and how you can un-paralyze me with a stare. Or your little-girl antenna thoughts. We talk about my beautiful rabbit hands that can draw seven versions of you and still return you to the water. We talk about your job as a telephone operator and why at times I feel so heavy, how I can sink below every reflection.


In bed, you straddle me, attempting to cure me with that silly centipede of a smile. The walls of this orange room are filled with my creations, peonies, little dolls, peonies in hand. At some point, I admit that when it comes to love, I fast-fall. Suddenly, you are sad. You claim that you are bipolar, so melancholy at this time of day, a very sick werewolf. I apologize for my centipedes that talk too much. Nevertheless, you rush out of the room with a piece of my flesh. But you forget that I still can't walk.