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Jane Alison

Jane Alison is the author of several novels; a memoir, The Sisters Antipodes (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009); and Change Me, translation of Ovid’s stories of sexual transformation (Oxford, 2014). “But I’ve Got Ovid” is adapted from her nonfiction novel, Nine Island (Catapult, 2016). She is Professor and Director of Creative Writing at the University of Virginia.


Illustration by Marc Aspinall

But I’ve Got Ovid

Summer 2016 | Memoir

After thirty years of disaster with men and fresh from a spanking-new heartbreak, I’m back in Miami, back in my dilapidated condo in paradise, to decide if it’s time to retire from love.

Even my mother thinks I should. When I called to tell her of the latest disaster, she sighed and said, Maybe, darling, you should give up on all that. Maybe it’s just time.

Okay, I’ve got other loves, after all. My broken-down mother. My blind old cat. A love poet who’s been dead two thousand years whose words I’m being paid to translate. A friend or two via text.