Pen Pal Profile
I want to join the pen pal project because I think the sun wants to eat me.
I go out in it a lot. Alone.
It glints off things, and I don’t think they’re real. Sometimes I go to the dock with my fishing pole, and I cast the line out into the water, and the sun shines on the water and on the pole and on me, and nothing ever happens.
Letters to Jasper
Sarah said I needed exercise.
She said that if I thought the sun was trying to eat me, then okay, I could go out at night if that would help, but that I needed exercise. She said endorphins would be good for me.
You ask me to tell you a story of grace. I don’t know if I can do that.
I can tell you the story of a day when the sun isn’t so hungry.
I think that it must be quite pleasant in your mirror meadow with the unicorns. I would imagine that it smells better than the trash chute.
I ask her, “Why does the shish kebab taste a bit like elephant?”
She looks at me, and her lower lip begins to wobble.
She says, “The tiny elephants. They took my knives.”
Letters to Anya
I don’t mean that things are always going wrong. I am safe inside the walls. I mean that it’s possible that the apartment exists in a bubble of spacetime where things are always going to go wrong, but they never quite do, because I don’t open the doors.
I don’t trust the other humans to make anything real. Maybe where you are, with the doors and the house that is keeping you, you are cardboard. I don’t think so, but I don’t know for sure. Even if you are on a cereal box, you sound very real to me.
Here, though, in this city with its hungry sun, I am sure that it is the other humans who are cardboard. They are thin and blurry, and I don’t think they have ever tasted caramel.