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Snowy Owls, Egrets, & Unexpected Graces | Finalist in Foreword Review’s Book of the Year Awards

Posted by on Mar 21, 2017 in Featured, Gwen Media, News | 0 comments

Snowy Owls, Egrets, & Unexpected Graces | Finalist in Foreword Review’s Book of the Year Awards

Today, Hiraeth Press is pleased to announce Snowy Owls, Egrets, & Unexpected Graces by Gwendolyn Morgan has been recognized as a finalist in the 19th annual Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards. As part of their mission to discover, review, and share the best books from small, university, and indie publishers (and authors), independent media company Foreword Reviews hosts its annual awards program each year. Finalists represent the best books published in 2016, and submitted to Foreword Reviews for award consideration, and were narrowed down by Foreword’s editors from over 2,200 individual titles spread across 65 categories. A complete list of finalists can be found at: https://​awards​.forewordreviews​.com/​f​i​n​a​l​i​s​t​s​/​2​0​16/ “Choosing finalists for the INDIES is always the highlight of our year, but the choice was more difficult this time around due to the high quality of submissions,” said Victoria Sutherland, publisher of Foreword Reviews. “Each new book award season proves again how independent publishers are the real innovators in the industry.” Snowy Owls, Egrets and Unexpected Graces is a portal to an interior landscape that mirrors the natural world – the majesty of western red cedar and snowy owls, the murmurations of songbirds and the incantations of astral showers. The poet simultaneously reflects on the suffering of those living with cancer and chronic illness as well as the on-​​going habitat destruction amidst climate change, and the violence of war and poverty. This book invokes hope and gratitude in the midst of sorrow and grief, an invitation to take a breath in the midst of the turning of the wheel of the year, to pause and recalibrate to the music of the cosmos. INDIES finalists are moved on to final judging by an expert panel of librarians and booksellers curated specifically for each genre and who will determine the books who will be named Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award winners. Winners in each genre—along with Editor’s Choice winners, and Foreword’s INDIE Publisher of the Year—will be announced during the 2017 American Library Association Annual Conference in Chicago on June 24, 2017.   GWENDOLYN MORGAN learned the names of birds and wildflowers and inherited paint brushes and boxes from her grandmothers. With an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Goddard College, and an M.Div. from San Francisco Theological Seminary and the Graduate Theological Union, she has been a recipient of artist and writing residencies at Artsmith, Caldera, Into the Depths of Winter, and Soapstone. Crow Feathers, Red Ochre, Green Tea, her first book of poems, was a winner of the Wild Earth Poetry Prize, Hiraeth Press. Her poems have appeared in: Calyx, Dakotah, Kalliope, Kinesis, Mudfish, Tributaries: A Journal of Nature Writing, Written River as well as The Cancer Poetry Project 2, and other anthologies, blogs and literary journals. Gwendolyn and Judy A. Rose, her spouse, share their home with Abbey Skye, a rescued Pembroke Welsh Corgi....

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American Wild by Michael Engelhard

Posted by on May 31, 2016 in Michael Engelhard, News, Previews | 0 comments

American Wild by Michael Engelhard

  Forthcoming September 20, 2016 from Hiraeth Press: American Wild: Explorations from the Grand Canyon to the Artic Ocean by Michael Engelhard. Torn between two “soulscapes”—the canyon country and Alaska—the author has roamed both for twenty-​​five years. En route he suffered snowstorms, boat-​​flips, heat, injury, bobcat tamales, upset raptors, charging grizzlies, the Park Service, heartbreak, hungry mosquitos, and honeymooners from abroad. Above all, American Wild speaks of one man’s desire to see natural wealth and our stories about it preserved. An anthropologist by training, Michael Engelhard has worked as a potter, wrangler, army officer, ship’s cook, university teacher, outdoor instructor, and wilderness guide. Among his homes he has counted an oven-​​hot bunkhouse in Moab, an unheated sauna near the Arctic Circle, a houseboat parked on a ranch in British Columbia, and a blue-​​tarp hut shaped like a Tootsie Roll on the banks of the Rio Grande. His greatest accomplishment has been a 1,000-mile solo traverse of Alaska’s Arctic, from the Canadian border to the Bering Strait. He is the author of Redrock Almanac and Where the Rain Children Sleep and the editor of four collections of nature writing. His most recent book is Ice Bear, a cultural history of that Arctic icon. Still moving often, he lives in Fairbanks, Alaska again.   Advance Praise for American Wild Alternately profound, funny, and enlightening, Engelhard manages something rarely even attempted in outdoor literature: stories focused not on the death-​​defying prowess of the adventurer, but on the wild glory of place. —Erin McKittrick, author of Small Feet Big Land and A Long Trek Home Michael Engelhard’s beautifully crafted book, dedicated to opposing lands of extremes, is an intricate weaving of poetic language and luscious imagery, of reverence and outrage, of intellect, humor, and wit. At times a Zen-​​like docent of the land, at others a curmudgeonly sage in the Abbey tradition, Engelhard doesn’t just show you around the wild places he hopelessly loves, he takes you deep into their souls, sharing the senses they evoke and the ancient stories embedded within. —Debra McKinney, co-​​author of Beyond the Bear As someone who spends her year commuting between these same two regions, I can think of no better ambassador for them than Michael Engelhard. Landscapes like these deserve such prose. Engelhard skillfully examines the threads that bind us to the land and reminds us how important it is that we protect these last wild places. —Christa Sadler, editor of There’s This River and author of Life in Stone Michael Engelhard migrates like the thrushes we northerners so envy in autumn. This has given him a perspective of rare insight. Here, he takes us with him and we are richer for the journey. —Ned Rozell, author of Finding Mars and Alaska Tracks With its exquisitely tough elegance and accordion range, Engelhard’s prose growls and sings, appropriate for a writer whose twin poles of geographic passion are the Arctic and Southwest. Read him slowly, at the speed you would appreciate any array of delights, so as not to miss one fluting wren, deftly sketched fellow traveler, or diving grebe leaving “haiku pond-​​ripples.” You will come away more ready to observe deeply and joyfully, more apt to draw thoughtful connections between your experiences and the natural world, and with a more nuanced insight into the dangers we pose to the places we love. —Carol Haralson, editor of Sojourns (Peaks, Plateaus & Canyons...

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Written River Issue #10

Posted by on May 27, 2016 in News | 0 comments

Written River Issue #10

It is with great pleasure that we announce issue #10 of Written River for release on May 31st. This issue, which marks the 10th anniversary of Hiraeth Press, also marks a change in format and release schedule. Starting with issue #10, Written River will be released once annually in paperback format. Selected pieces will be available to read on writtenriver​.com, and the back issue will be archived as a downloadable PDF prior to the release of each subsequent issue. These changes have allowed us to produce a journal twice as long as our past publications. It’s a more filling meal. Issue #10 features thirty-​​three different poets and essayists, writing on a range of environmental topics. To give you a taste, our feature essays this issue are: Return to the South Fork of Eagle River by Matthew Dickerson The Salmon Forest by Susan Double Tracking as a Way of Knowing by Sophia Sinopoulos-​​Lloyd Chasing the Memory of a Naturalist in Baja California Sur by Aven Satre-​​Meloy The Worsening Light of the Mind: Humanities and the Anthropocene by Maximilian Werner How I Defied the White Man and Out-​​Foxed Fox by Michael Engelhard Written River is a lit­er­ary jour­nal pub­lished by Hiraeth Press which focuses on poetry and non-​​​​​​fiction prose explor­ing nature and our rela­tion­ship to it. Published as an annual anthol­ogy, we strive to encour­age the dis­ci­pline of eco-​​​​​​poetics and return the voice of the poet to the body of the Earth. Eco-​​​​​​poetics is poetry in which the energy of the ecosys­tem flows through the poem, cre­at­ing a writ­ten river of words which ebbs with the cre­ativ­ity of the entire Earth commun­ity. Written River marks the con­flu­ence of many streams and many voices as they flow back into the nour­ish­ing ground of the water­shed. Written River #10 will be available for purchase on May 31st from the Hiraeth Press store, Amazon​.com, or anywhere else books are sold. We hope that you enjoy reading this issue as much as we have enjoyed producing...

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Mountain Thoughts | An Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

Posted by on Aug 20, 2015 in News, Previews, William Searle Media | 0 comments

Mountain Thoughts | An Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

In the words of Sir Andrew Motion (UK Poet Laureate, 1999–2009, President of the Campaign to Protect Rural England) “Lungs of My Earth evokes particular places dear to the author, sweeping them into our imaginations with a rush of delighted language to create ‘a luminous map of the sacred’. Part field-​​work and part sky-​​dreaming, it is at once exact and exultant—a vibrant song to the earth and echo chamber of the earth’s own singing.” Look for Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle in paperback and ebook on Amazon, B&N, the Hiraeth Press bookstore or ask for it in your local indie bookstore. | Visit our bookstore»  ~ Hail clinks against an iron latch-​​gate. Sheep bow to buckets of winter feed. An owl pursues a stoat down a crag. Stars bud the tips of bare branches. The half-​​moon nests amongst pine tops. Twelve rivers bleed into one black lake. A cold wind blows across the road. Sleepless walkers like I wield head-​​torches at this unearthly hour as though to gather in the lost, finding nothing but a strange, frost– frail beam of thin light weaving to and fro as slowly as the growth of bone, that stops at each thing to stitch up each thing’s heart, leaving behind traces of quiet that amount to the sound of everything breathing, and working. —Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth William Henry Searle, Ph.D., born 1987, in Dorset, UK, is a spiritual ecologist whose work draws on the world’s diverse spiritual traditions, philosophy, ecology, and personal lived experience in the outdoors to revive the sense of the natural world as inherently wild and sacred. He holds a doctorate in creative writing and environmental philosophy for which he was awarded a three year studentship to study at the Royal Holloway University of London. Lungs of My Earth is his first...

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So Ecstasy Can Find You | A First Look

Posted by on Jul 2, 2015 in Elizabeth Cunningham, News, Previews | 0 comments

So Ecstasy Can Find You | A First Look

On September 15, 2015 we will release So Ecstasy Can Find You by Elizabeth Cunningham. In her third collection of poems, Cunningham leads us on an intimate journey into forest and mountain, garden and dream, along a hidden stream bed and beside a friend’s deathbed. She also explores poetic form, drawing inspiration from ghazal, haiku, tanka, and song lyric. Eye and ear are equally important to Cunningham; her images are rich, her rhythms, sure. By turns wry and tender, awed and amused, the collection displays the emotional range of a writer whose questions have led her on a quest, whether it is following blue trail markers along a cliff or confronting her own aging and death. These poems are grounded (literally and figuratively) in Cunningham’s ecstatic connection with the earth in all its strength, fragility and mystery. Pre-​​order So Ecstasy Can Find You now in our bookstore. Praise for So Ecstasy Can Find You “This luminous book of meditations on finding ecstasy brings us into the still spaces where inner and outer landscapes converge. Elizabeth Cunningham’s grace-​​filled words deftly transform the mundane into the sublime. With senses wide open, she invites a deep, rich exploration of the natural world and of what it means to fully engage in life.” —Cristina Eisenberg, ecologist and author of The Carnivore Way and The Wolf’s Tooth “With a wise perspective and an eloquent voice, Elizabeth Cunningham probes the underpinnings of the cycles of nature and the spiritual dimensions of the ordinary and the everyday within the grander universe. She finds ecstasy in mindfulness and in the moments of her own self-​​confrontations and discoveries. This quiet but powerful and masterfully written book needs to be on your bedside table, to be read and re-​​read, to be savored, one enlightening poem after another.” —Mary Swander, Poet Laureate of Iowa, author of The Girls on the Roof “One of Elizabeth Cunningham’s poems declares, ‘It’s all poetry.’ And wherever she looks, she finds it, as well as the perfect images and phrases that allow us to share her vision of how all the world is a poem of beauty, meaning, and mystery. When you step into one of Cunningham’s poems, you understand this. And wonderfully, you too begin to see everything as poetry.” —Tom Cowan, author ofFire in the Head: Shamanism and the Celtic Spirit and Yearning for the Wind: Celtic Reflections on Nature and the Soul “Elizabeth Cunningham’s collection, So Ecstasy Can Find You shows a poet in the maturity of her art. She’s mastered her craft and knows enough of life to tell us important messages about it. And beautifully told they are. With spare and subtle rhymes and interweaving sounds, she explores life, love, art, and death. At the core of these poems, in spite of the suffering and ecstasy of living and dying, lives a deep and profound stillness.” —Judith Roche, winner of the American Book Award author of All Water All Fire and Wisdom of the Body “Poetry can be a potent portal of transcendence for both the reader and the poet. Cunningham’s So Ecstasy Can Find You is a trance dance landscape of deep emotion and reflection.  The rocky crags and crevasses of life reveal the infinite variety of mortality.   The still, moonlit ponds and snow-​​covered fields offer soft subtle glimpses of the Divine.” —J. K. McDowell author of Night, Mystery & Light Elizabeth Cunningham is best...

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Praise for Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 in News, William Searle Media | 0 comments

Praise for Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

What does it feel like to be a part of the living, breathing earth?  And how do these experiences contribute to the sense that the earth is sacred, holy? In prose that is at once lyrical and vividly profound, the author intimately recounts–from childhood to the present day–his experiences of being carnally drawn into the life of the earth through six particular landscapes that open out towards the ineffable, the sacred, which does not gleam beyond the earth’s horizon but beats, from within, the very heart of life. In Lungs of My Earth, William Henry Searle pens a powerful memoir of place and connection. Readers and critics alike are entranced by this beautiful song of the wild. Look for Lungs of My Earth in paperback and ebook on Amazon, B&N, the Hiraeth Press bookstore or ask for it in your local indie bookstore. | Visit our bookstore» Praise for Lungs of My Earth “In a breathless torrent of vivid impressions–most strikingly those of touch and feel–William Henry Searle ignites our own senses, brings us to life. Those of us, like me, who glibly speak of the living Earth as our larger body, are jolted awake to a wilder, more awesome reality.” —Joanna Macy, author of Coming Back to Life “William Searle’s book, Lungs of My Earth, is an inspiring and heart-​​​​warming read. The author has been able to weave together a sense of the sacred with a sense of the place. Here in this book the love for the landscape meets the imagination of the intellect. The resulting prose is a beautiful narrative. It is a pilgrimage through life as well as through the land.” —Satish Kumar, founder and director of Schumacher College, editor of Reurgence Magazine “Lungs of My Earth evokes particular places dear to the author, sweeping them into our imaginations with a rush of delighted language to create ‘a luminous map of the sacred’. Part field-​​​​work and part sky-​​​​dreaming, it is at once exact and exultant—a vibrant song to the earth and echo chamber of the earth’s own singing.” —Sir Andrew Motion, UK Poet Laureate, 1999–2009, President of the Campaign to Protect Rural England “William Henry Searle guides us through six particular landscapes, richly described and wisely reflected upon. As we journey through forests, marshlands and wind-​​​​scoured mountains, we discover what modern humans are most starved for: an embodied connection with a numinous world. This lyrical and potent book deserves a permanent place in the bookshelves of anyone interested in bridging the false divide between outer and inner nature, Earth and soul.” —Mary Reynolds Thompson, Author of Embrace Your Inner Wild: 52 Reflections for an Eco-​​​​Centric World and Reclaiming the Wild Soul: How Earth’s Landscapes Restore Us to...

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Look for Hiraeth Press Titles in Bank Square Books

Posted by on Jun 5, 2015 in News | 0 comments

Look for Hiraeth Press Titles in Bank Square Books

Both Hiraeth Press and Homebound Publications, now have a section in Bank Square Books in Mystic, Connecticut. Let’s hear it for the local indies! Come visit the store and explore historical downtown Mystic or, if you aren’t in the area, visit Bank Square Books online at...

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The Book of Walden | An Excerpt from Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman

Posted by on Jun 5, 2015 in Diane Freedman Media, News, Previews | 0 comments

The Book of Walden | An Excerpt from Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman

  Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman is now available in paperback and ebook wherever books are sold! | Visit our Bookstore» This is a book about writing as righting. At midlife Diane turns to the books of Thoreau, not to mention his landscapes. Practicing the nature cure and the narrative cure, she  writes, in poems, essays, and journals, about family, feminism, and literary history, loss, divorce, dating, accidents, animals, waterways, local landscapes, and teaching environmental literature in ruburban New Hampshire. She sojourns with books and domestic beasts, tramps brambles and trails, and basks in language, love, and lake-​​front sun. Thoreau loved a “broad margin” in his life and Whitman, another influence, “a certain free margin.” Out of these, Carl Bode maintained—and Freedman shows—poetry could grow. Taking direction also from new environmental writers such as Ian Marshall, John Elder, Janisse Ray, Sandra Steingraber, and Amy Seidl and from other hybrid or narrative and autobiographical critics, this is a book of intense observation, advocacy, lyricism, sweetness, and sadness. Enjoy an excerpt from the book below: I don’t think I actually read Walden until I was a college graduate and a teacher at a boarding school for young dancers and artists. I basically failed in trying to excite my eleventh graders with Walden alongside Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. These books were long, complicated in vocabulary and reference, and not in focus for that group (though had I tried it with my seventh graders at the time, who knows? They were the brightest kids I have ever taught, I think, in my thirty-​​five years of teaching all kinds of students. Why they were so wise, one might speculate. They were attuned to symbols. They still lived in the world of digression and imagination.) I read Walden as I lay on a tan corduroy couch in a small Massachusetts town near Concord, reading and chuckling and exclaiming aloud to my long-​​ago young spouse, sure that my punster dad would love him, too, and surprised we had not together read and discussed this genius. Later, I read more of Thoreau’s writing out on the west coast, while in graduate school. The seminar instructor was, however, from the eastern U.S., and I was perhaps his one student that term able to conjure easily the apples, trees, and landscape described in “Wild Apples” – as I read it again under old Gravenstein apple trees in my new Seattle backyard. Again, the puns and general crankiness of the narrative made me think of my father, himself ever resistant to modern life, fondest of a walk in the woods, hunting the wild edibles or enjoying an arboretum, plantation, or planting field of trees. I read it again now, twenty-​​five years later, by a New Hampshire lake, also under trees, sometimes sticky pines. I read it by candlelight in the living room at home after a tropical storm took out the power. Reading Thoreau brings me back east, to New England, binds me to my father, informs my teaching, endorses my own daily walks in nature and forays into nature writing or at least the kind I tend to write: place-​​based, familial, teacherly, elegiac. —An excerpt from “The Book of Walden,” Midlife with...

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Reflections from Hope Cottage | An Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

Posted by on May 30, 2015 in News, Previews, William Searle Media | 0 comments

Reflections from Hope Cottage | An Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle

Our first offering of 2015 is Lungs of My Earth by William Henry Searle. In the words of Sir Andrew Motion (UK Poet Laureate, 1999–2009, President of the Campaign to Protect Rural England) “Lungs of My Earth evokes particular places dear to the author, sweeping them into our imaginations with a rush of delighted language to create ‘a luminous map of the sacred’. Part field-​​work and part sky-​​dreaming, it is at once exact and exultant—a vibrant song to the earth and echo chamber of the earth’s own singing.” Look for Lungs of My Earth in paperback and ebook on Amazon, B&N, the Hiraeth Press bookstore or ask for it in your local indie bookstore. | Visit our bookstore»  ~ Low-​​light lit boughs of Studley Wood. Cold golden air. A treecreeper flurried up an ash trunk, soundlessly merging into ivy. I breathed in fistfuls of dead leaves, again, again, and again. It was as though in that bouquet of last year’s autumn leaves I inhaled the sweet and damp aroma of every forest and wood on earth. ~ In the entangled woodland of time there are hollows, clearings, as natural as the woodland itself, continuous with it. One comes across them, steps into them unexpectedly. If I knew how to find them, read the map of the wood, of time, more thoroughly, read between the lines of leaves and branches as it were, then I would be led into more of those clearings, those breathing places of the Spirit, a lit spot of eternity amidst what grows and fades. In one of those clearings, Hope Cottage was built. My roof is a tile-​​work of clouds, leaves, and stars. Do we not all need time to relax our grip upon the world in order to sink back into the arms of where we are? —Excerpt from Lungs of My Earth William Henry Searle, Ph.D., born 1987, in Dorset, UK, is a spiritual ecologist whose work draws on the world’s diverse spiritual traditions, philosophy, ecology, and personal lived experience in the outdoors to revive the sense of the natural world as inherently wild and sacred. He holds a doctorate in creative writing and environmental philosophy for which he was awarded a three year studentship to study at the Royal Holloway University of London. Lungs of My Earth is his first...

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Delve into the Introduction to Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman

Posted by on May 20, 2015 in Diane Freedman Media, News, Previews | 0 comments

Delve into the Introduction to Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman

  The latest release of Hiraeth Press is Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman. This is a book about writing as righting. At midlife Diane P. Freedman turns to the books of Thoreau, not to mention his landscapes. Practicing the nature cure and the narrative cure, she  writes, in poems, essays, and journals, about family, feminism, and literary history, loss, divorce, dating,accidents, animals, waterways, local landscapes, and teaching environmental literature in ruburban New Hampshire. She sojourns with books and domestic beasts, tramps brambles and trails, and basks in language, love, and lake-​​​​front sun. Thoreau loved a “broad margin” in his life and Whitman, another influence, “a certain free margin.” Out of these, Carl Bode maintained—and Freedman shows—poetry could grow. Taking direction also from new environmental writers such as Ian Marshall, John Elder, Janisse Ray, Sandra Steingraber, and Amy Seidl and from other hybrid or narrative and autobiographical critics, this is a book of intense observation, advocacy, lyricism, sweetness, and sadness. Look for Midlife with Thoreau by Diane P. Freedman in ebook and paperback on Amazon, B&N, and the Hiraeth Press bookstore or ask for it in your local indie bookstore! | Visit our Bookstore» Delve into the Introduction below: Introduction: Essais d’après Thoreau At midlife I turn to the books and moods of Thoreau, not to mention his landscape or thereabouts. He died at what should have been but midlife for him. I am at that place on the road now. Walden: or, Life in the Woods was published, neatly enough, 100 years before I was born. In 2017, it will be 200 years since Thoreau was born. Like Thoreau, I am an inveterate walker. Unlike Thoreau, I am still on the road. This book is in fact a chance to, sauntering, take a good look at place-​​based writing, the meaning of life in the woods – by pond, by college, even. Walden, The Maine Woods, Thoreau’s journals, and the essays “Walking,” “Wild Apples,” and “Civil Disobedience,” among others, repeatedly urge me to the large view while still being quite grounded: “We hug the earth, – how rarely we mount! Methinks we might elevate ourselves a little more” (“Walking”). Robert Finch and John Elder, in their compilation The Norton Book of Nature Writing, describe contemporary nature writers’ “excursions,” the term borrowed from Thoreau, as walks through landscapes of association, beginning with observed phenomenon and moving to its personal meaning for them. A hallmark of the modern nature essay, they continue, is “its insistent open-​​endedness” (26). Here I join the wandering, word-​​pondering, nature advocacy work of Thoreau and his centenary celebrant E.B. White (see “A Slight Sound at Evening”) – or so I hope. I sojourn with books and domestic beasts, tramp brambles and trails, and bask in language and lake-​​front sunshine. Thoreau loved a “broad margin” in his life as Whitman did “a certain free margin.” Critic Carl Bode maintains that out of this, poetry – that is, any work by a poet, including prose – could grow (21). I like to think of the margin a bit like the inter-​​tidal zone, fluid and recurrent, the resultant prose returning and advancing in memory and time. Or I see the margin as a musical scale, these notes going up and down in time and memory. It was Thoreau who advocated time in nature and who anticipated, among myriad other movements, nature and narrative “therapy,” that nature and personal writing, together, can be healing. Practicing...

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