A Scattered World by Kaewkan, Siriworn

By Kaewkan, Siriworn

While a few males are cursed with immortality, they endeavour to wreck the curse and, if profitable, develop into sea animals.

A novel of magical realism and verbal magic set at the fault line of Islam and Buddhism in Southern Thailand

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It was as though the man−made cliffs of lower New York were raised scores of times their height, stretched a score of times their length. And weirdly enough it did suggest those same towering masses of masonry when one sees them blacken against the twilight skies. The pit darkened as though night were filtering down into it; the vast, purple−shadowed walls of the city sparkled out with countless lights. From the crowning arches and turrets leaped broad filaments of flame, flashing, electric. Was it my straining eyes, the play of the light and shadow−−or were those high−flung excrescences shifting, changing shape?

Like spun silk of ruddy copper; and misty as the wisps of cloud that Soul'tze, Goddess of Sleep, sets in the skies of dawn to catch the wandering dreams of lovers. Down from the wondrous face melted the rounded column of her throat to merge into exquisite curves of shoulders and breasts, half revealed beneath the swathing veils. But upon that face, within her eyes, kissing her red lips and clothing her breasts, was something unearthly. Something that came straight out of the still mysteries of the star−filled spaces; out of the ordered, the untroubled, the illimitable void.

Dureresque, grimly awful as materialization of a scene of the Dance Macabre−−and yet−−vastly comforting. For here was something which was well within the range of human knowledge. It was the light about us that did it; a vibration that even as I conjectured, was within the only partly explored region of the ultraviolet and the comparatively unexplored region above it. Yet there were differences, for there was none of that misty halo around the bones, the flesh which the X−rays cannot render wholly invisible.

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