I remember the fire; the fire was something that happened only in the cartoons when a mouse lit a bomb, or the cat lit the rocket, and each would place it at the end of each other’s tail. Then they would skyrocket to space and turn into stars.
“Pet Sematary” by Stephen King, if passed on as a story around a cosy fireplace must be done when the fire is ablaze and the night is young, for when the embers have died and the cold wind whistles through the woods, even the slightest rustle can make your heart leap out of your chest.
What I have now is a salmagundi of photographs. To gather them all on the floor, to look at them in a new light, to guess their order of arrangement and place it back in the box constitutes the act of remembrance. And every time the act is repeated, a slightly different version of story blooms.
All forms of art—literature, movies, plays, music, dance, etc.—will be created by the “cultural committee” which will adhere to guidelines issued by the leaders. The work then produced will be approved under five stages of reviews from individuals set up by the leaders.
Romesh Gunesekera’s “Sun-Catcher” is an ode to curiosity and the joy of learning. It is a story of the convergence of lives that would continue in parallel lines, if not for the sudden appearance of Jay in Kairo’s life, one June afternoon, challenging him to a bicycle race.
He does not notice the small station with its board sign wearing off. He does not spot the old man waving the flag. The old man is my father. I am trailing behind him, barefooted, squinting to glimpse the passengers.
The train does not stop here.
In the year 2040, we will eat money, and in the night, we will hear the clink of coins and ruffle of notes inside of us.
To read John William’s “Stoner” is to regard a decrepit building by the sidewalk, falling into disrepair. It is a study of slow decay, sometimes propelled by external forces in its neighborhood until it collapses under its weight. We are, with our hands tied, forced to witness an act of destruction upon a man who remains undeterred until the very end, characterized by his endurance, faith, and extraordinary grace.
Shoot those who dare rise against you, those who raise their voices to resist you. Shoot those who speak not in your mother tongue. Shoot those who chant a different prayer than yours. Shoot them, their wives, their mothers, their children. Shoot them all.