The Paris Review

The Blue Jay’s Dance

Revisited is a series in which writers look back on a work of art they first encountered long ago. Here, Sarah Menkedick revisits Louise Erdrich’s memoir, The Blue Jay’s Dance.

From the first edition of The Blue Jay’s Dance.

Nine weeks into my pregnancy, in the middle of an Ohio woods lit gold with fall, I sat in a small, dark cabin and wept. I had no idea how to proceed and I also understood with a wrenching clarity that I could not turn back. I had no model for pregnancy beyond the asexual lady on the cover of , clad in neutral sweater and slacks, plain-faced in her rocking chair, an emblem of the dull, docile femininity demanded

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Paris Review

The Paris Review1 min read
Miraji
Should the gusts of wind come this way then tell them There’s nothing here that they could take away with them There’s nothing here that someone could look at and think:If only this were ours, too There’s no traveler here, no destination, There’s no
The Paris Review3 min read
Two Poems by Charles Baudelaire
After my friend and I left the tobacco shop, he carefully sorted his loose change; slipped some small gold coins in his left jacket pocket; into the right went the silver pieces; in his left pants pocket, a handful of centimes; and in the right, a si
The Paris Review24 min read
The Juggler’s Wife
The situation in itself is not unique. There was a man who hated his job and wanted a new one. There was a man who was sick of his boring job and wanted an exciting job instead. This man was depressed, but he saw a way out. He thought this way out wa