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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 587

The Mouth Listens

Dans le poète :
L’oreille parle ;
La bouche écoute ;
C’est l’intelligence, l’éveil
qui enfante et rêve
— Paul Valéry
In the poet:
The ear speaks;
The mouth listens;
Intelligence, waking
creates and dreams

  1. In Oonah V. Joslin’s “Blizzard,” what point does the story make about the mental process of composing fiction?

  2. Is F. Hampton Carmine’s “The Great Tree’s Last Thoughts” science fiction or a fable?

  3. In John Grey’s “The Perfect Man”:

    1. In what way might the “perfect man” be viewed as a kind of Frankenstein’s monster?
    2. Why is the “perfect man” his own enemy?
  4. In Tantra Bensko’s Equinox Mirror, “Lucky’s Mother Chooses”:

    1. What has been the function of Dungeonella and the male Lucky in the story as a whole?
    2. Chapter 14 may be read as overstepping Bewildering Stories’ guideline against plots that end with “but it was all a dream” or the equivalent. Or it may be read as asking “Would Lady Lucky’s life have been worth living?” Be careful how you answer that question, because it implies another. What is the next question?

  5. In Sarah Ann Watts’ Winter Ship, “Night Has Come”:

    1. How old would you guess Kyran is? What special knowledge does he reveal in chapters 10 and 11? Why might it come as a shock to learn that Kyran has not known his homeland is a backwater? What is the “Empire,” and where is it?
    2. What is Mathuin’s function as a character? What does Kyran gain or lose from his reunion with him? Is Mathuin really necessary to the story?

    3. What is or who are the “mortali”?
    4. Razvan has not been mentioned before. What does his function seem to be?

    5. Daan, Lorcan and Naraya could have accompanied Kyran and Razvan. What is the dramatic effect of separating the two groups?

    6. What does Razvan reveal, perhaps inadvertently, to indicate he has magical powers of his own? What does he say to suggest he might not have needed Kyran’s help in crossing the desert?

Responses welcome!

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