the rat who (tried to) steal christmas

this year -- 2020, the chinese year of the rat -- has felt like a pest swept through 
and upended everyone's preparations and expectations for the future. christmas feels 
no different, and so a story unfolds. the rat who (tried to) steal christmas. 
through 16 postcard scenes, the story of the rat who (tried to) steal christmas 
depicts the rat's curious yet mischievous antics and santa claus' reaction to the chaos.
1 the rat peeks out of his hole on christmas eve.
2 the rat eyes the christmas tree.
3 the rat notices gifts pleasantly wrapped.
4 the rat imagines that the christmas gifts are cheese.
5 the rat investigates the christmas gifts for cheese.
6 the rat finds no cheese after unwrapping.
7 the rat sniffs something sweet.
8 the rat scurries to the table with cookies.
9 the rat eats santa’s cookies!
10 the rat feels full + fat after eating santa’s cookies.
11 the rat hears a jingling sound.
12 the rat scurries to hide after hearing a jingle.
13 the rat sees santa claus, who sees the rat’s mess.
14 santa claus chuckles in jolly cheer.
15 santa leaves a tiny gift for the rat.
16 inside the tiny gift: cheese! what the rat wished for all along.
ps the back of each postcard features a scene description and year of the rat stamp


i'd strung you up in twine and fine branches and
imagination fragments
your voice followed suit in feathers which i tied to
that crooked ring hanging up
how ridiculous to chain compression waves
when they are in fact like wings
in your throat

to pin you down in dreams was a fucking waste
like taking life from a gull
or serenading the soul of some captain
hoping he'll stay and listen
and peer through the torrents of rotating face
and open his lips to sound
like water

but your voice cast open webs
capable of trapping my lids so i could
drift off in something immense
something wider than wind and sharper than spit
i saw you in those depths as
tides realigned and i casted the net
i listened