"I feel safe in the woods, safer when I’m alone. Some people find that solace in church, others by listening to music, or reading quietly by a fireplace. For me it’s always been nature. Yesterday I took a long walk in the woods behind my house. I’ve been there dozens of times, but each time I see something new. Nature is brutal and relentless, but it is also gorgeous and balanced. I came home dirty, wet and happy. I’ve learned more from being alone in the woods than anything else."
- Chris Offutt (author of Out of the Wood, The Good Brother, No Heroes, etc.)
I couldn't agree more.
"The World is not something to look at, it is something to be in." - poet Mark Rudman
And I'm so very glad to be back in the World.
The quote by Chris Offutt is from an interview in Salon (March, 2016). I recommend his books, for he's among the still-too-few American authors skillfully depicting rural and working class lives. His latest, My Father the Pornographer, is a memoir about his father, fantasy (and porn) writer Andrew Offutt -- who, oddly enough, I worked with years ago, having been given the assignment of editing his "Conan" and "Red Sonja" novels when I was a very young editor at Ace Books in New York. It was a strange experience, to say the least.
The poem in the picture captions is from Poems: 1960 - 1967 by Denise Levertov (New Directions, 1983), and was inspired by the Mark Rudman quote. All rights reserved by the authors or their estates.