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  • Rural Husband
  • Laura Kasischke (bio)

He comes stumbling out of the barn with a lamb in his arms. 1917. It's still possible to watch the sunset from the porch—no condominium complex in that field. No TV. My rural husband is drenched in the blood of the lamb. I stand at the kitchen window unaware of the warm foreshadow I cast, unaware that the future has already come and gone and that Heraclitus long ago warned that the fairest world is but a heap of trash piled up at random. My heart inside this cotton dress is beating like a small, trapped man. My animate darkness, like a hundred billion ova suspended in time—I am energy, heat, and matter floating with a husband through space on a half-empty planet, openmouthed with desire, while inside me a numberless choir of future wives sings "The Messiah," watching my husband silently from the kitchen window, with a plan.

Laura Kasischke

Laura Kasischke has published six collections of poetry (most recently Gardening in the Dark, Ausable Press, 2004) and four novels (most recently Be Mine, Harcourt, 2007). Her work has appeared in American Poetry Review, Poetry, The New Republic, Ploughshares, the Iowa Review and elsewhere. She teaches at the University of Michigan and lives in Chelsea, Michigan.



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