from Pain Studies

words: Lisa Olstein
pictures: Lauren Haldeman

A set of questions, I suppose: How do we feel and why? Play in the open, the parasite says, and he mouse complies.
He left the truck and rode. Near a gate, the horse slipped on some ice and fell. His father's back and arm were broken; the horse spooked and took off running."
Over how much and what do we exert control? Influence is probably a better word, control being out of the hands of the gods even, if you read the primary texts.
Excerpt from Pain Studies. Copyright © 2020 by Lisa Olstein.
Bellevue Literary Press: www.blpress.org.
Reprinted by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Lisa Olstein is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Late Empire. Her book-length lyric essay, Pain Studies, will be released on March 3, 2020. She teaches at the University of Texas at Austin.

Lauren Haldeman is the author of Instead of Dying, which was the winner of the 2017 Colorado Prize for Poetry, Calenday, and The Eccentricity is Zero. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Poetry, Tin HouseThe Colorado ReviewThe Iowa ReviewFenceTupelo Quarterly, among others. A graphic novelist and poet, she’s received an Iowa Arts Fellowship, a Sustainable Arts Foundation Award and fellowships from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. You can find her online at laurenhaldeman.com.