Gender: Two Novellas in Verse, by Anne Harding Woodworth
In Gender, the sexes are everything.
Anne Harding Woodworth has brought together two novellas in verse that share a look at the role of male and female. In Martin/Martina a young woman dresses as a man, is accused of fathering a child, and as the boy’s father, raises him. In Aftermath, a member of an asexual group—among three survivor groups that have formed after cataclysm has destroyed most of civilization—becomes pregnant.
Two not dissimilar landscapes set the stage for these stories, somewhere in (perhaps) a Mediterranean place of the eleventh century, as well as one of today and of the future. Regardless of time frame, the atmosphere in both novellas lures us into lives of sex, parenting, labor, confusion, and friendship, all in a mixture of free verse, form, and rhyme.