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Simon Sylvester

Five Books About Fantastical Islands

I love the sea, but panic in deep water, and so find a happy medium on shorelines, where I can walk in land and water all at once. I’m drawn to threshold places, to landscapes in flux, to anywhere that captures two states in one space. Islands give me what I love of the ocean: a sense of magic, of otherness, of endless possibility. Islands are hemmed in by themselves, their own coasts marking their constraints, and yet they are boundless, everchanging, living landscapes. The air feels thicker on islands, dense enough to push aside and slip between, thick enough to fold. Surf rushes in your ears and salt gathers on your tongue. Anything can happen on an island. For me, at least, all islands are fantasies.

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Series: Five Books About…