L’homme semence translated from the French by
Collection Main de femme
Parution : 20 octobre 2019
In 1852, Violette Ailhaud was about to get married when the govenment’s repression of the republican uprising of December 1851 suddenly wiped out all the men of her village in the Lower Alps. For two years, the women lived in total isolation. They promised each other that if a man came along some day he would be husband to them all, so that their wombs could bring forth the next generation.
“It came from the farthest depths of the valley. Long before it forded the river, long before its shadow interrupted the gleam of water between sandbars like a slow blink, we knew it was a man. Our empty, husbandless women’s bodies had started thrumming in a way there was no mistaking. In unison, our exhausted arms left off stacking hay. Glancing at one another, each and all of us remembered our oath. We grasped hands, squeezing each other’s hands so hard that our knuckles fairly snapped – our dream, icy with fear and burning with desire, had been set into motion.”