Strange Horizons, March 1, 2021

Strange Horizons, March 1, 2021

“Mouth” by Sasha LaPointe

Reviewed by Victoria Silverwolf

“Mouth” by Sasha LaPointe is a brief but powerful tale with the feeling of magic realism. The narrator speaks forbidden words during a romantic encounter. Authorities remove the narrator’s mouth and place it in a museum. During a visit to the museum, the banned words are revealed.

This simple plot, narrated in a deceptively calm fashion, carries a depth of meaning. The loss of one’s culture is a primary theme, but it can also be read as an allegory for the repression of emotion. The story’s modern, realistic setting adds to the impact of its premise.

Victoria Silverwolf almost ran out of gas on the way to work tonight.