Sweet Forest Maid

Publication(s)

  • First publication
    • The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, 1971
  • Wolfe collection(s)

Summary

Lenor Stacy, a businesswoman, makes a trek into the wilderness to find the "Adorable Woods Woman."

Analysis

  • Hernando De Soto, by Walter Malone, Book XXII
Rude in his manner, yet of kindly heart,
Gallegos hied him to the neighboring fields,
And gathered clusters of wild-roses ; these,
Dew-gemmed and fragrant, pale and delicate,
Back to the camp he lightly bore ; so there,
With big rough hands, yet nimble, nice and swift
From constant use in war's necessities,
A wreath he wove to circle round the brows
Of the sweet forest-maid: and all declared
That never an empress on her wedding-day
Wore sparkling diadem more gracefully
Than Lulla wore her simple wild-rose spray.
  • Stacy's lack of survival skills and preparation are obvious, but what proves fatal to her is her lack of ability to connect with others.

Unresolved Questions

  • Was it A or was it B, or was it X or Z?
  • Was it he or was it she, or was it you or me?
  • Who dunnit?
  • Did the Star Child really start WWIII at the end of 2001?

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