If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love by Rachel Swirsky

★★★★☆ (4/5)

Read the story here

This is a very evocative and poetic short story. Its brevity defies its gravity as it pulls the reader into a whirlpool of imagination: of dinosaurs and music, of Broadway and magic, of battles and marriage, of violence and grief, of life and death.

The cadence of sentences (“Audiences would weep at the melancholic beauty of your singing”), the metaphorical analogies (“My legs would be pale stems, my hair delicate pistils”), the alliterations (“If I laughed, laughed, laughed, I’d eventually feel guilty”) all are befitting as prose-poetry. Each paragraph is awash with vivid imagery, probing through child-like innocence, murderous rage, quiet submission and woeful longing.

The tragic reveal at the end silently creeps up on the reader, yanking them from their reverie. This story echoes the struggle of a loved one combing through the senselessness of violence. An incredibly swift and haunting read.

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