The Prairie in Her Eyes

Prairie in Her Eyes

The Prairie in Her Eyes

“Brilliantly evokes the excruciating beauty and frustration of ranching life.” —ORION
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“My father’s ranch is now a testament to the fact that cattlemen and coyotes can live in peace,” Ann Daum writes. But it wasn’t always so. Reared on her father’s thirty-thousand-acre ranch, Daum grew up to become a rancher herself, raising sport horses. And in The Prairie in Her Eyes, she captures the beauty, despair, rewards, and loneliness of ranching in the modern West.

Daum’s essays rise and fall with the undulations of the prairie and can pack a punch like South Dakota weather. She writes about actual artifacts buried in the prairie soil, as well as of what lies hidden in the lives of people who live there and the “white line” you can never go beneath without drawing blood. Warm memories of her girlhood on the ranch turn cold as she recalls brutalities both casual and calculated—the writhing of a captive coyote, a ranch hand’s predatory sexuality, and the horrors of a chicken research facility.

The Prairie in Her Eyes is the story of why one woman stayed in a place many people would consider uninhabitable, and her determination to achieve a self-reliance that is not intertwined with cruelty and in which dependence on the land does not mean hatred of the wild.

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5.06 × 8.06 × 0.56 in
10 oz

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