Pop Those Bottles
In Bob Lovely’s “Scarecrow”:
- Does Jimmy’s father overstep the rule of sentimentality, i.e. unearned emotion?
- Does Jimmy confront the Scarecrow before or after he determines the historical facts behind the legend?
- “Scarecrow” blurs the distinction between illusion and reality. Does it qualify as “magic realism”?
- Why is Sheriff Peterson so relieved by what Jimmy has done? What might seem to be the moral of the story?
In Sarah Ekholm’s “I Will Eat the Ocean,” what traces of humour might be found in the poem?
In David Henson’s “Priceless,” what is the significance of the barking dog?
In Edna C. Horning’s “God Has One, Too”:
- As Cricket’s guardians, do Aunt Lucy and Uncle Sulo incur any legal liability for failing to report her as a missing person?
- Does Aunt Vera’s practical nature belie or support her mystical view of dogs, particularly Sonny and Smidge?
- Trace the theme of abandonment in the story. Who and what are lost or abandoned at some point? Why and to what effect? What happens to them?
- Is the story really about dogs? What does it say about the adequate role of parents? Do fathers — as well as mothers — play any part in it?
In Jarrett Mazza’s “Afraid To Go”:
- Does the story illustrate a case of post-traumatic stress disorder?
- How does the story avoid overstepping Bewildering Stories’ “naughty words” guideline?
In Marian L. Thorpe’s “In an Absent Dream”:
- Does Claire ever speak to her cat?
- Claire converses with two people. Who are they? How does she contact them? What conversations does Claire report indirectly? How does she seem to feel about them?
- When Claire ties her scarf to the bridge railing, why does she retrace her steps rather than proceed farther?
- Does the story overstep Bewildering Stories’ “dream stories” guideline? If not, how does it avoid doing so?
What is a Bewildering Stories Challenge?