Winona Johnson :: “Laputa”

There is something green living here which does not live anywhere else. We dream of reds. But red is too many things.

I’ve seen the riots so many times that they all look the same now and I’ve forgotten entirely what I was supposed to be looking for on the other side. It’s somewhere in the cornfields I believe. Or maybe it’s the strawberry fields, where I’ve been hurt before, but not more than twice. I swear I smelled peppermint this afternoon, or something else, sweet as rain. They say it’s a place you come from once, but that’s all they say. I know it has something to do with silk, and graffiti, the big messy pieces which pool into the grass and melt along the cobblestones. I know this is a place with weeds and dandelions, too, but I am also certain you could pile all the terrible things together and soak them in chamomile until they dissolve like sugars, little invisible outlines which used to be forms and substance but which started as only shapes. Only as little silhouettes, little liquid performers in need of new spots for rendezvousing every other century.

We dream in red. But red is too many things.


Winona Johnson is on a balcony somewhere (wishing you were here). They live nomadically, probably think too much, and prefer their nights with candlelight tinkering around art projects. Their stories have appeared in Papeachu Review, Jupiter Zine, and their debut chapbook is forthcoming with Ghost City Press. Empathy and freedom are important to them, and they are obsessed with the kind of storms that rattle the windows.