Grainy footage of the Japanese rising sun. Red circles with rays of red stripes, waving in the wind. Planes crashing into battleships, camouflaged men sweating, their helmets covered in bamboo stalks.
Jessie pressed forward on the remote. Grainy white lines intersected the soldiers and explosions and physicists appeared more rapidly, until the Bikini footage.
Planes flew over a blue ocean, their backs painted yellow and black. Combined with their propellers’ buzz, they seemed incredibly waspish. Below them a fleet of warships floated, like Battleship, assembled in random orders and directions. Then a flash and a giant water droplet, like someone dropped a pebble from the sky. The cloud overtook the warships, the droplet expanding out of frame. From this distance the cloud resembled a pagoda, or half a sphere, the other half buried underwater. The explosion repeated from a different angle, like an instant replay. The repeating cloud looked like a head, with a dusty mustard gas crown. The explosion repeated again and again, each time from a new angle, each time the pure white cloud on the outside and the muddier crown inside. Then from the sea level, where the dwarfed warships floated smaller than toys, the hairy mushroom stalk falling like a volcanic eruption. Then a top-down angle, the camera capturing distinct waves as the explosion spread over the ships, covering the water in white expanding spheres. Then the ships, alone, smoking, all immobile, all stunned like beetles. Shirtless men stood on the hulls of wrecks, under a yellow-green sky. Cows and lambs, their necks tied to railings and posts, with flies eating their eyes. Then men lowering the lambs into canvas bags. New ships doused old ones with fire hoses.
Jessie leaned over her bedside table and lit a few sticks of incense.