Posted: August 27, 2015 in katherine govier
Tags: , , , ,


At first I assume this fell out of an armful of laundry. Is there a laundromat close by? And I’m thinking it was lost on the return trip from the wash, not the outgoing. Fresh.

Either that or the elastic gave out.

But no, it looks intact.

The garment looks very clean. The curb, and the pavement too, look clean, newish, swept. Are we being put on? Is this an art project masquerading as legit Litter? And what about that Ripper-ish shadow leaning over?

I’m becoming suspicious.

It looks a little staged, like a clue. Follow the red panties…

Red underwear is alluring. It spurs the imagination to what lies up that skirt, what lies inside. In old Edo, Japan, the women about town always showed a dash of red beneath their indigo kimono.

Young women wear red panties. I used to, didn’t I? Have a few pair over the years? I remember one. A Valentine purchase. I don’t wear them, anymore. I’m not sure at what age I gave them up. Maybe there was a moment, just as this looks to be a moment, an instant, an impulse, when I thought, the young woman thought, you know what? I’m done with all that.

Katherine Govier’s most recent novel The Ghost Brush is about the daughter of the famous Japanese printmaker, Hokusai, creator of The Great Wave. It has been published in the United States as The Printmaker’s Daughter, and will appear in translation in Spain, Quebec, and Japan.

Katherine’s novel Creation, about John James Audubon in Labrador, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year in 2003.  She won Canada’s Marian Engel Award for a woman writer (1997) and the Toronto Book Award (1992). She has twice been shortlisted for the Trillium prize.

The author of twelve books, Katherine has been instrumental in establishing two innovative writing programs. In 1989, with teacher Trevor Owen, she helped found Writers in Electronic Residence. Today she is the founder and Director of The Shoe Project working to improve the written and spoken English of immigrant women.

She can be found at

**(‘red knickers’ photo by Allison Howard)


Up Next:

bennett“They cannot lie to others if they will not to themselves”

  1. I love this – what fun! – done with all that.


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