Brian Oliu


It was the right ocean but the wrong island—instead of rising suns, there was the son of islanders: wild-eyed and wild-isled, grunting in place of words—every syllable guttural, every bark signifying a smash. The monster billed from Polynesia in hopes that we would ignore geography and the limiting stretch of triangles across Oceana and concentrate on him—thick-nosed and stoic—a body so wide it looked as if it touched both guardrails as he lumbered away from something much more majestic than where he was hailed from: a certainty where there should be mystery, a forgetful scooping together as if grabbing fistfuls of salt, as if you mistook the granules for sugar. Him, eating the dough anyway: shoveling the mush into his mouth despite claims of it tasting terrible, despite having no need for any of this. Him, eater of men, swallower of everything.

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"Yokozuna and the Calling of Names That Aren’t Our Own" was originally published at Booth.