Dr Gretchen Shirm is the author of three works of fiction Having Cried Wolf (2010), Where the Light Falls (2016), and The Crying Room (2023). Her criticism is regularly published in The Australian and The Sydney Morning Herald. She teaches creative writing at the Writing & Society Research Centre, Western Sydney University.
Western Sydney University
This essay argues that Jennifer Down’s two stories ‘Aokigahara’ and ‘Pulse Points’ point to the limits of referential language in conveying grief, loss and related…