Keith Lesmeister.png

Meet the Author
Keith Lesmeister

We Could've Been Happy Here

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

6:00 PM

Doors open at 5:30 PM

The History Center

800 Second Avenue SE

Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

Keith Lesmeister is the author of the story collection We Could’ve Been Happy Here. His fiction has appeared in American Short Fiction, Gettysburg Review, New Stories from the Midwest, North American Review, Redivider, SLICE,, and many others. His nonfiction has appeared in The Good Men Project, River Teeth, Sycamore Review, Tin House Open Bar, Water~Stone Review, and elsewhere. He received his M.F.A. from the Bennington Writing Seminars and serves as editor of Cutleaf. He lives in Iowa’s Driftless region.

In his first collection of short fiction, Keith Lesmeister plows out a distinctive vision of the contemporary Midwest. A recovering addict chases down a herd of runaway cows with a girl the same age as his estranged daughter. A middle-aged couple rediscovers their love for one another through the unlikely circumstance of robbing a bank. A drunken grandmother goads her grandson into bartering his leftover booze for a kayak. The daughter of a deployed soldier wages a bloody war on the rabbits ravaging her family's farm. These stories peer into the lives of those at the margins -- the broken, the resigned, the misunderstood. At turns hopeful and humorous, tender and tragic, We Could've Been Happy Here illuminates how we are shaped and buoyed by our intimate connections with others -- both those close to us, and those we hardly know.

Tickets: $7.00 general admission; $5.00 members of The History Center

Meet the Author series is sponsored by

Cedar Rapids Bank & Trust.