Patricia Foster is the author of All the Lost Girls: Confessions of a Southern Daughter, Just Beneath My Skin, and Girl from Soldier Creek. She has won a Pushcart Prize, a Dean's Scholar Award, the Hoepfner Award, the Clarence Cason Award for Nonfiction, and other prizes. Seventeen of her essays have been Notable Essays in the Best American Essays series. She was a professor for 25 years in the MFA Program in Nonfiction at the University of Iowa and has taught in Australia, Italy, Spain, and the Czech Republic.
I was a child full of cautions, ellipses, living in an insular world, always watching. I watched the physical irritation of my father, how his eyes jerked and his mouth narrowed at the slightest interruption.