Dancing the Cows Home
A Wisconsin Girlhood
Author Sara De Luca
Minnesota Historical Society Press (June 15, 1996)
In 1955, inspired by a televised automobile advertisement, twelve-year-old Sara Hellerud and her twin sister Susie took up dancing. Like the pair of huckstering ballerinas who sailed over the Buick, they vaulted over milk cans and barbed wire. The TV dancers had provided an irresistible contrast to the workaday world of their family's dairy farm in Polk County, Wisconsin. This and other fantasies shared by the twins enabled them to dance through a tense childhood and adolescence. From the vantage of middle-age, Sara recalls her early years with pride and humor. She also explores the process through which the twins unraveled their symbiotic, almost merged, identity to become independent young women eager to investigate the wider world.
Poet and writer Sara DeLuca grew up on a dairy and sheep farm near the Williamson “homeplace” in Polk County, Wisconsin. She is the author of the poetry collection Shearing Time and editor of The Crops Look Good.
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Praise for Dancing the Cows Home:
"Early in this memoir of Wisconsin farm life, Sara De Luca recalls the way she and her sisters once played with kaleidoscopes, and she notes that in a similar way each of them has created her own shapes and patterns, small universes of their shared past. It is just this startling array of intricate color and pattern that draws us into the story. Some patterns will be familiar from the era of the 1950s and the farm milieu, others have the idiosyncrasy of De Luca's seesaw love affair with her stronger twin or the shocking brutality of farm life. Hers is not a picture-perfect 1950s family, and their triumphs often emerge long after a struggle. This is a story to read at breakneck speed,and then savor long afterward for its psychological insights."
Margot Fortunato Galt, author of The Story in History: Writing Your Way into the American Experience
- 242 pages
- 5.5 x 8 inches
- ISBN: 9780873513258