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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 577

Tie’em If You Got’em

  1. In Edward Ahern’s “Home Fires Burning,” are the marsh lights natural or supernatural? What is their function in the story?

  2. In JD DeHart’s “The Mapmaker Parable”:

    1. What indicates that the “map” is scripture, not a literal cartographic representation?
    2. What details in the story might indicate that the “map” is the Torah?
    3. How does the story indicate that the “map” cannot necessarily be limited to any particular holy work? How might one incident in the story relate to Mt 11:12?
  3. In Ron Van Sweringen’s “A Life Without Shoelaces”:

    1. What is the irony in the title? What does Ker Benfield exchange for a life “with shoelaces”?
    2. The story begins with Ker Benfield but ends with Lacy. Why?
    3. The story depicts the consequences of moral corruption. What does the corruption consist of in Ker Benfield, Margo Parker and Walter Mansfield? What are its consequences?
  4. In John Stocks’ “Sleeping Children,” what might a reader from outside of Lichfield need to learn about the cathedral and the statues in order to appreciate the viewer’s reaction?

  5. In Lela Marie De La Garza’s “The Door”:

    1. Why does the unnamed girl persist in breaking into a well-protected stronghold?
    2. Does Gak actively seek “virgins” to eat? Does he consider them a fortuitous, tasty treat? Or does he just sit and starve?
    3. The story appears to be a satire. What might be the objects of satire?

Responses welcome!

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