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A Provocative Story for the Eyes, Ears, and Imagination

Plunge into an oceanic “heaven” and let a perverse, tentacled god challenge your trust as he guides you toward the redemption of a desolate world.

Arms from the Sea is a tangible encounter with the creative spirit. A guide for reconstructing our understanding of water and our origins.”
—Moses Hacmon


About Arms from the Sea

What kind of sea change in our ideals might we need to refashion our world for the better?

Lyle is a young man who hates his life in the State of Salt, a cultural and literal desert. He vandalizes a State icon, then swallows a poison pill that transports him not to death, but to a liminal realm—blue, aquatic, and wholly alien.

He’s rescued and shepherded by henchmen of the Polyp, god of the oceanic world they call “heaven.” A series of encounters unfolds between Lyle and the monstrous, seductive god, who gradually reveals his grandeur and mysterious purpose.

Lyle is horrified at first but soon finds himself falling for the Polyp, and the potent and bizarre creative potential he represents . . .

Whimsical and outlandish but also timely and dead serious, Arms from the Sea navigates allegorical realms of possibility, pointing to what it might mean to redeem a desolate world.

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Arms From The Sea by Rich Shapero

About the Book
A Q&A with Rich Shapero

Q: Arms conjures a dystopian future, and the hope for a “sea change” appears in the form of the Polyp, the tentacled god of an oceanic heaven. If the Polyp is a savior, he’s a perverse one.

RS: The Polyp is perverse, yes. But he poses important questions. How are the ideals of a world established? What are the values of creation and destruction that are at work in our world, and what kind of higher power rules it? Is the higher power a conventional deity or the law of fang and claw? Is it quantum physics or trickle-down economics? If you were going to refashion our world from scratch, who would you put in charge? On what basis would decisions be made about whether creatures flourish or perish?

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About the Music

Q: You’ve approached the music differently in Arms. With your previous projects, you wrote and performed everything.

RS: I was doing a disproportionate amount of the work myself, because I couldn’t think of any other way to get it done. With Arms we ran a new experiment. My relationship with Orenda spans a decade, and I felt we had the chemistry to tackle this together.

> More About the Music