on my nintendo switch there is a mammoth on my new horizons island. or at least, i have to assume that's what he's meant to be. he wears a leopard-print tunic one-shoulder flintstones-style & his name is tucker. tucker in english, hajime in japanese. did you know that hajime means one? or first? the wikia says that perhaps he is called that since he is the last of his kind. extinct & trapped on my island with sheep & horses & hedgehogs & cats & the knowledge that he is the only relic of a bygone time. the loneliest thing about tiggers is that i'm the only one, tigger says in the tigger movie. hajime — i cannot think of him as tucker — likes historical furniture in pocket camp, and all he asks from your low-poly player character in happy home designer is a fresh start. the wikia says he is lazy. that his best skill is oversleeping. every time i load up the game i wonder what it is like to wake up after an ice age. the wikia says he wants to become an archaeologist. i want to sit him down on my wild log bench and look him in the eye and say: hajime, it's not worth it. it's not worth it.
NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS is already such a negative phrase it starts by telling you no and ends with a word i already know from people saying they need a brownskin person for their photographs NEAT FUCKING TWEETS sometimes as an artist i think about the things that get retweeted and the things that don’t NO FUCKING THANKS like color and shape and the specific genre of art made to appease rich people gold plated toilets and things that evoke the shallowest loss in their destruction and things that nobody should own like the pinkest pink in the world NOT FOR THEM i want to hone my craft learn to draw people as beautiful arcs of motion that will never make me rich i want to dance in my work-from-home office and sing anything but hamilton NO FREE TIME and make art with a hundred colors not one of them gold plated that people pinch-zoom on their phones and admire on company time NOT FOR THIS / NOT FREE TODAY / NOT FROM THIS
and what am i meant to say to you when you took my little clay heart, me and all my loves, and shaped it? glazed it, too, that crackle-shard stuff that happens when your outsides cool faster than your insides. they tear apart, then. contents too hot to hold, lawsuit-worthy, overfull. spilling over like anger and so many poems and ink, blotted too late not to leave a stain in your terrible carpet. i was angry, but didn’t know it yet. you were beautiful in your anger and your ennui and the crooked-tooth way you had about work and men and being queer in the way that queer means artist, ever making, perpetual motion machine, until the cables give out on him and her and you and me.
i'm tired of caring. you, your consecrated archways, your story-spinning whirligigs, the way you papier-mache together cleavage and moustachioed bravado until someone — anyone — puts the sword through the magician's coffin. i'm tired of poisons and poultices and precipices. i'm tired of unnecessary hand-wringing and necessary interventions. i'm tired of swinging at shadows you've conjured up, puppet-master around a cauldron of sins and puppy-dog tails. the trail of broken hearts you've left in your wake is a miracle in itself, you stepping lightfooted across the watery roil of souls more cursed than yours, or perhaps just less clever. i don't even think you're clever, just smart. you know the difference. that tongue-twisting finger-licking catastrophizing echelon, riding back through the portcullis after victory in distant lands, that's what you want, isn't it? i'm tired of caring. i'm tired of polishing your saddle and saving the baby's breath that crumples in your hoofprints. let me take my gilded scissors to the heart of your tangled wood and cut your hair while you sleep. it doesn't matter.
i have never been good with faces it's a quirk of synapses the way my brain swims among people silver-scaled and refracted by water into unfathomable shapes i hold them loosely because i can't see them and i can't bear to see the hurt of someone seeing me not see them but you — i would be lying if i said i knew you from the moment that we met though it's not a lie that you caught my eye right away — swam through my silver net my crab pots my bent back my memory an eel a taniwha half myth half purposeful and very much alive in my grasp and my siren song turned yours and i sang marry me (you did) marry me (you will) marry me in the everyday and marry me in the way i always see you coming i remember your face and i beam like a lighthouse shouting home
it is january and we must be brave. in all things. the ways tongues fit in mouths, or don't. the way that resolve is a noun and a verb and we aren't sure if either is within reach, not even if we try really really hard. the way to try can mean to strive for or to test, you know, trials and tribulations and all the other things that new years are made of. it is january and we must stare into the corpse of the neonate world unflinching. or very much flinching, that's okay too. curl your pinky finger around the ghost of mine six feet or six thousand miles away. we'll be fine. we'll be brave. i promise. i don't.