Swimming to Fatima
A cycle of spare, sweet-sad, magical tales. A small girl dreams a house floating away. Lolly loves pink. Walter and Hank conduct a juke-box war. Tessie dances with a spectral Sidney Greenstreet. Sadie may or may not have caused Lila to be air-borne. Characters migrate between stories. Down-to-earth realism turns out to be not quite real after all. Limited and damaged lives are refracted and transformed, as in a kaleidoscope, by absurdity, by wonder, by magic and desire. As a character in one of these stories reflects, thinking of the last word in Joyce’s Ulysses, the answer to the mystery of life is YES.
Sylvia Markle-Craine lives in Guelph, Ontario. She has published poetry and short stories. One of her stories won first prize in the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival Literary Contest.
“With some basic ingredients she cooks up just enough magic to make perfect little fables from what on some level amounts to an album of small town gossip. By inviting readers behind closed doors, she reveals worlds rich in character, the quirky opinions and pursuits of those characters, and the diner-friendly language they use to communicate with one another….at the intersection of strangeness and character Markle-Craine writes her most descriptive, sensual sentences to help us tune into the smaller details of daily existence.” —”Off the Shelf”
Book design by Christian Snyder. Cover art by Amber Albrecht.