Laura Kasischke in her own words: "I realized while ordering and selecting the poems for this collection that much of my more recent work concerns body parts, dresses, and beauty queens. These weren't conscious decisions, just the things that found their way into my poems at this particular point in my life, and which seem to have attached to them a kind of prophetic potential. The beauty queens especially seemed to crowd in on me, in all their feminine loveliness and distress, wearing their physical and psychological finery, bearing what body parts had been allotted to them. For some time, I had been thinking about beauty queens like Miss Michigan, but also the Rhubarb Queen, and the Beauty Queens of abstraction—congeniality. And then—Brevity, Consolation for Emotional Damages, Estrogen—all these feminine possibilities to which I thought a voice needed to be given."
"Kasischke is . . .the poet of high school cliques remembered and terminal wards observed." -(Boston Review)
"Kasichke's poems are powered by a skillful use of imagery and the subtle, ingenious way she turns a phrase." -(Austin American-Statesman)