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October 9, 2017
Gas wells meet wilderness - 4DEE2E32-DE55-4CC9-B0C8-9CE3C5AEC7B3

In most forests in eastern North America, humans’ imprint has shaped the land beyond even what we can imagine. I have just returned from western Pennsylvania, where I visited the edges of the Allegheny National Forest, the United States’s first oil-boom area starting in 1859.

The Allegheny National Forest is a land where old-growth forests, logging, Wild and Scenic rivers, and...

September 14, 2017
Step forward onto the land: starting new writing - dscf0448

Wendell Berry knows Kentucky, where he has lived, written, and done some farming for most of his more than eight decades on earth. When one knows a place deeply, one writes about it well. In 2015 while being inducted into the Kentucky Writers' Hall of Fame, Berry said he'd lived and worked for two years in New York City in his late 20s. But decided to leave and go back to his home landscape of Kentucky.

Not all writers live and work with that sense of peace about where they...

September 5, 2017
Ideas come from trees - IMG_1717

 I started walking in the woods as a way to write more honestly about 15 years ago, after my father died.  I already knew at that point that getting onto a forest path, alone, helped me sort out what I think. But I was still in the mode then of putting off the time in my life when I would act on thoughts.   The day my father died, he told me about a conversation he’d had with someone at work who’d asked him—because Dad was always telling stories—if he had ever done much writing. “No, but my daughter is trying...

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