Transformer

A lone surfer washed up on top of the mountain, blown off course by a strong wind from Easter Island. The train leaves Shinjuku station. The doors open and close. The train arrives at the station, disgorging the drunken salary men, cartoon rabbits and bare breasted pearl divers. The drunken salary man steps into the waiting elevator, penthouse express, long legged women in high heels, a view of the skyscrapers of light.  The doors open and the salary man steps from the train. Alone on the platform, he takes off the black suit and changes into a cartoon rabbit. A man in dark sunglasses sits smoldering under a streetlight, a Gaijin, he’s smoking a cigarette but the smoke is from his eyes. His accent is difficult to place. He’s speaking to himself in English, Mandarin, Hindu sign language. A magical incantation. A sacred chant. The doors open and close. The train goes back in time. The doors are a portal or a trap. The train is always on time. The dark corner of the man’s smoldering eye. The man breathes into his hands, fills them with fire. I am a bullet. The cartoon rabbit vanishes. The man checks the bottom of the hat. He places the hat on his head, enfolds himself in a cape. She finds the black box deep in the underwater canyon. She puts her eye to the keyhole and looks inside: a hive of smoke filled tiny bars ticking like atomic time. The wave breaks over Tokyo harbor, a high rise of glass, a mirror over the skyline. An elevator rises to the crest. The doors open and a lone surfer rides out, streaking down the cold curl of electric light. The Big Zero sits in the hot spring, surrounded by white peaks. Next to him, on the ledge, his hat. The geisha folds a paper flower. He rises from the water and steps out. The black sash, she wraps it around her eyes and ties it. She pours the tea and folds herself inside-out. He steps through and … The master stares out of stone eyes. The last of the big wave riders. He drinks ten shots of whiskey and nods off at the shrine. The geisha lets the kimono fall. She stands naked at the edge and dives, awakening the volcano. The last of the bare breasted pearl divers, says the drunken wise man, nodding off at the shrine. He wakes up and takes a sip of beer, somebody else’s glass, as the sun rises over Golden Gai. A man in a black suit changes into a cartoon rabbit and catches a bullet back in time, the king of monster island.

Morgan Hobbs

 

Morgan Hobbs graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, with a degree in English and History. He currently resides in Washington, DC. His work has appeared in Mississippi Review, Pindeldyboz, McSweeney’s, Hollywood Dementia, Mudlark, The Cabal, The Airgonaut, Shattered Wig, Nocturnal Lyric, Satire and others. He recently published his first novel I’m the Bomb, about a diabolical movie mogul.

 

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