It came from Joshua Grasso

It came from Joshua Grasso

Joshua Grasso’s story “Bas Relief” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 11 November 2022. Metaphorosis

“Bas Relief” was inspired by my experience teaching college students, typically those fresh out of high school. So many of them choose the same 2-3 majors, have the same 2-3 goals, and almost all of them want to become their parents (i.e., successful, big house, vacations, etc.) as soon as possible. They don’t seem very excited about learning, or growing as a person, or taking changes that might lead to unexpected destinations. I kept thinking of them as young people quickly turning into stone, desperate to plant themselves into a suburban neighborhood as soon as possible and have the accumulated wealth of the world grow over them like moss. The more I thought about it, the basic outline of the story suggested itself, of teenagers who are pushed to ‘change’ as soon as possible so they can take their places on the hill, forming a man-made mountain of the ‘haves’ that look down at the unfortunate ‘have nots’. I originally meant this to be satire, but as I started playing with the characters, a love story suggested itself, since being young is about finding love as much as finding yourself. Indeed, your initial identity as a person is often formed by how you want others to see you, and how someone convinces you to see yourself (or imagine yourself) because they believe in you. So I wanted this story to be about more than satirizing people who grow up too fast, and a society that makes them; I also wanted it to be about how you decide to open yourself to being in love when you’re still at war with yourself, and how trust people to see the real ‘you’.

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