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Evidence of Love in a Case of Abandonment: 11/01/08
Whenever I see a Mary Rickert short story in FSF, I catch my breath knowing that ahead of me is a well written but emotionally gut wrenching story. "Evidence of Love in a Case of Abandonment" goes above and beyond the previous Rickert stories I've read and two days later I'm still shuddering.
"Evidence of Love..." takes the current state of affairs (assuming a Republican win) and plays connects the dots arriving at a near future that is a mixture of Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" and Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale.
The story is told from the point of view of an "abandoned daughter" at a time when women are publicly executed for having had abortions. The daughter doesn't know if her mother has fled to escape her fate or if she has been disappeared. Whatever the reason behind her mother's vanishing is of little interest to the daughter beyond her own brainwashed take on the current treatment of women in her society. It is the daughter's own lack of empathy for her mother that I found the most chilling.