Monday, September 26, 2016

Reader's Diary #1389- Taqralik Partridge: Igloolik


The time will come, I don't doubt it, that I will have lived longer away from Newfoundland than I actually lived there. And, I suppose, I've made my peace with that. I'm no longer sure that I'd fit in anywhere but St. John's at this point, and I quite like living in the North. I might remain where I am, I might live there again, I might even wind up somewhere else. Who knows? Still, there are certainly things I miss about Newfoundland. The smell of the ocean is perhaps one near the top of that list. My wife, not from Newfoundland but with roots there, understands this. And while I won't suddenly break, suddenly need to return, I think she, above anyone else would understand and even be supportive. In this, the narrator of Taqralik Partridge's "Igloolik" reminded me of my wife.

She [the narrator] has been newly dating a guy and though she doesn't come right out and say it, falling in love. And though there is no reason to doubt that his feelings are mutual, it is also clear that he has another love: Igloolik (a town in Nunavut, far north of the Montreal setting of this story). At one point, one that she immediately regrets, she claims not to understand, though it is apparent that she really does and is just lashing out at the situation that threatens to pull them apart. It ends on an ambiguous but optimistic note.

It's a beautiful story, a story fighting hard to not be tragic.

3 comments:

Eric P said...

John -- I might suggest that the second sentence of the second paragraph be revised to say "She [the narrator] has been newly dating a guy..."

John Mutford said...

Eric: I nearly sprayed coffee when I reread that sentence. Thanks for the heads up! So funny, I have to include the original below:

In this, the narrator of Taqralik Partridge's "Igloolik" reminded me of my wife. She has been newly dating a guy and though she doesn't come right out and say it, falling in love.

Ah, the importance of grammar,

Eric P said...

I had to read it twice myself. Technically, it is more correct to infer the narrator is the subject of the second sentence (as well as the first), since it makes it a parallel construction, whereas "my wife" is an indirect object. But the placement definitely makes it blurry, and removing ambiguity is generally for the best...