Laura Kasischke

July 9, 2014 Kasischke Laura



Suddenly, it’s over, and I hear!

And what I hear


is that stranger in the Carhart  jacket

who stopped at the side of the freeway and said,


“I got this for you, darlin’.  Just go stand

over there in that tall grass

with your baby while I change your flat.”


And I did, and he did, and forever after that…

And that’s how my life passed…


Told a little baby story.

Sang a little baby song


while the crows in the branches and the baby laughed

and the yellow butterflies in that tall grass—


and a stranger in a Carhart jacket, who might have passed

but stopped instead to change my flat, and said, “I


got this for you, Laura,” and knelt down:


And even better, I believe, that I

never really heard him until now.


Laura Kasischke is the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry, 2012. She has published eight novels, two of which have been made into feature films—The Life Before Her Eyes, and Suspicious River—and eight books of poetry. She has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as several Pushcart Prizes and numerous poetry awards. Her writing has appeared in Best American Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Harper’s, and The New Republic. She lives with her family in Chelsea, Michigan and is an Allan Seager Collegiate Professor of English Language and Literature at the University of Michigan.