Voices in Verse welcomes the poet Susan Kinsolving. She is the author of three books of poems: "The White Eyelash," "Dailies & Rushes," which was a finalist for The National Book Critics Circle Award, and "Among Flowers." You’ll find abundant praise for her work here, including a New York Times review of "Dailies & Rushes" written by one of our friends and favorite writers, Carol Muske-Dukes.

Kinsolving has taught poetry at Bennington College, University of Connecticut, Southampton College, Chautauqua Institute, Willard Men’s Prison and California Institute of the Arts. As a librettist, her works have been performed by Glimmerglass Opera in New York and the Baroque Choral Guild in Italy and California.

The recipient of several international fellowships, she was poet-in-residence in 2007 at The Camargo Foundation of France.

Her poem "Under House Arrest" breaks ground in a way that the world associates with prose. It is both brave and gentle, searing and serene. It is the work of a consummately honest woman, something WVFC stands for, applauds and supports in all our readers. Beyond that, it begins the conversation about where we learn, from whom and when. The poem begins after the jump.

Under House Arrest

Now that my infant is almost an adult,
I will admit how one midnight I lifted
her tiny body out of the crib and carried it

far into a field. There I abandoned her
in the deep grass, alone with the blinking
fireflies, moth wings, owl cries, one wild

chance for fear or freedom. It seemed
a long time that I walked away, believing
in an intimacy of earth and innocence,

some Edenesque extreme so lost before
it was ever found. I had to give her those
orphaned hours under a cloud-swept moon,

in the pine-scented air. When I returned,
her eyes were wide, fixed on a galaxy,
her arms outstretched, not to embrace me

but reaching for that first mother, the one
beyond my absence who will always be, distant
as the heavens, instinctual as memory.

– Susan Kinsolving

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