Marilyn Krysl’s work has appeared in
The Atlantic, The Nation, The Pushcart Prize Anthology, Best American Short Stories 2000 and O. Henry Prize Stories. Warscape With Lovers won the Cleveland State Poetry Prize 1997, and her collection of short fiction, Dinner with Osama, won Foreword Magazine’s 2008 Book of the Year Bronze Medal. She has taught ESL in the Peoples’ Republic of China, volunteered as an unarmed bodyguard for Peace Brigade International in Sri Lanka, and tended to the needy at Mother Teresa’s Kalighat Home for the Destitute and Dying in Calcutta.

While serving as Artist in Residence at Dr. Jean Watson’s Center for Human Caring at the University of Colorado, she wrote Midwife, a collection of poems describing the lives and work of caregivers, and Soulskin, which showcases alternative healers. She has taught writing and performed her work at nursing conferences across the U.S. and abroad, and most recently at The Healing Art of Writing Conference at Dominican University in California, and at Watson’s World Caring Conference sponsored by the Watson Caring Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado.
I’m on the Boulder mall half an hour before my herbal wrap appointment, shopping for an eye-liner not tested on rabbits, when I get the idea: why not ask Bin Laden over for a glass of Chardonnay and something light but upscale. Me, Sheila, your average liberal neocolonial with a whiff of Cherokee thrown in way back when. more...
Critical Acclaim ............................................................................................

A strong story collection from Krysl (How To Accommodate Men, 1998) showcasing a feminist, leftist, postmodernist, funny voice.

Colorado’s own Sheila, in the title story, is PC in extremis, besotted by a Boulder where you “can order arias sung for the spleen tailored to your personal astro printout and, if the acupuncturist recommends it, get a liver massage.” Her sister’s son is killed in the Towers, she’s grieving, but also scheming for nothing less than world peace. Her plan: to seduce Osama bin Laden with a meal of “Alaskan Salmon a la Tetsuya marinated in fresh basil, coriander, thyme, and grape seed oil.”  Sure enough the Evildoer, complete with dialysis machine and Koranic quotes, arrives at her place for din-din. And even while he blusters—“I’m Islam’s version of The Rock”—so smitten is he with the eats and the chef that he actually contemplates a talk with George W. Bush. If Bush will meet his requests, including backing out of Saudi Arabia, bin Laden will “call off jihad and send our women to college.” Krysl has a thing for Boulder, even more so, a life with allusions to the paintings of Mary Cassatt, and “Cherry Garcia, Pistachio Cream” is a beauteously real portrayal of mother/daughter bonding. The more political Krysl gets, the bleaker the results—think William Burroughs without the Misogyny. Her piece “Welcome to the Torture Center, Love,” concerning a night journey through the inferno that is war-torn Sudan, is a dazzler.
A compassionate and incendiary work.


                     —Kirkus Reviews

Now in print:

Obsession
Sestinas in the Twenty-First Century

Published by
Dartmouth College
Press and edited by
Whitlow and Krysl,
this anthology is available in hardcover,
paperback and Ebook.

Click here for more information.

Krysl is
funny, fierce,
and feminist
in the best
possible way,
and a technician
of variety and
resourcefulness.
I read her
short stories with
considerable pleasure, surprise, and admiration.

 —John Updike

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