Fantasy Short Stories Short Fiction Reviews

‘Where Gods Dance’ Short Review

Where Gods Dance paints the tragic picture of a father forever mourning the loss of his son as he attempts to recreate him using various pieces of his childhood. You can feel the sorrow buried in every word as the man desperately tries to hold on to the memories of his son. These created versions are monstrous and ethereal, never mirroring what the father wants to see. It’s a heartbreaking depiction of grief slowly overcoming a man until he no longer wishes to be a part of a world without his son.

Most interesting were the many creations depicted in the story. These facsimiles of his son are strange versions of Frankenstein’s monster. Some are childlike, pulling characteristics from his son and creating some sense of normalcy in his life. Others are horrific, pulled straight from the pages of a horror thriller. In the end, all of these creations fade away, only a temporary connection to something that can’t be regained. His final decision is his undoing and we’re left with a man so consumed with recreating the physical presence of his son that he’s forgotten him entirely.

I was floored at the emotion poured into this story. I felt the father’s grief, I imagined how overwhelming such a loss would become and I watched as he spiraled further and further into a pit of despair that would never cease. It’s a beautiful, heart-wrenching narrative, and I’m amazed that it only took 1,318 words to create such powerful emotions.

Where Gods Dance

Written by Ben Serna-Grey
Apex Magazine
March 2019

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