“‘…there is always a story inside a story inside a dog…’ With dreamlike clarity, these beautifully choreographed stories slip, delve and spiral in and out of the quotidian and the surreal with such deftness and precision that like Alice in her wonderland, suddenly you find yourself catching your breath in the light and dark of a world both familiar and yet deliciously unsettling. Pokrass has once again produced an exquisite collection for our enjoyment.”
Mary Jane Holmes
Alice In Wonderland Syndrome is very tender yet very naughty.
A sample flash can be enjoyed below.
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Mr. Figs has jelly on his hands in her dreams. He swells up with real pep when he strums his guitar. He has love for pale beer, and his favorite brand of humor is the same as hers. He likes Oolong tea. Can peel the toughest skin from her heart.
Mr. Figs protects his name, doesn't giggle, and doesn't chafe where she does, watches while she looks away and her face reddens like wine.
Mr. Figs tells her about his dog, how the dog is more than enough pets, because he sleeps little and irregularly. She’s not happy about her practical footwear, but Mr. Figs does not mind her thick-assed socks, in fact he can’t see them and has never asked to see her feet.
Also, he has recently been to the doctor who cleared him of fatal ills.
Mr. Figs has a trick and the trick is becoming Mr. Figs. A phantom here on this earth. Like her, he doesn’t read the newspaper—or if he does, says absolutely nothing about the real horrible things that happen.
"These 29 micro stories, which can be read in one sitting, are so interconnected that the effect is of one short story, told in fragments—a fitting format for a meditation on the unraveling of a marriage, with guest stars (dogs, lovers, therapists, the tiger cat, a rat). The compressed power of flash, however, combined with Pokrass’ lyricism, invites the reader to re-read each piece, and unpack each morsel line by line.[...]
"At a time when we are all living in said movie, Meg Pokrass’ new flash offering is a reminder that, while this collective unmooring is new and unsettling, our emotional lives have already pulled us through a great many rabbit holes. At times surreal, at times elliptical, Alice In Wonderland Syndrome is ultimately an earthy and poignant grouping of flash fiction for an upside-down world."
Amanda Krupman, SmokeLong Quarterly, full review here
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