Female narratives and female bodies run considerable risks within the Lais of Marie de France. Just as stories seek to stave off oblivion and forgetfulness, bodies run the risk of being torn apart. In Laüstic, Marie de France draws a parallel between female bodies and the texts and textiles that women fabricate to tell their stories. Through skillful and subtle descriptions of blood, clothing, and color, Marie creates a sense of homology between the body of the lady and the body of the bird that gives its name to the story. This allows her to posit acts of writing and sewing as metaphors for regenerating the mutilated female body. This article aims to show that in opposition to Ovid, Marie de France imagines a poetics that can piece the female body back together. She thereby challenges and reinvents Ovid’s version of the Philomela myth. In Laüstic, the act of sewing becomes symbolic of recovering communication and of allowing Philomela’s tongue to return to her body.

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