Monday, February 19, 2007

Wendell Berry

One of my favorite writers is Wendell Berry. His short stories are really super (Watch With Me and Fidelity are two collections) . I was given his newest book of poetry and a book of his agriarian essays for Christmas. I don't agree with all he has to say but quite a lot and I love his stories. Watch With Me is a collection of stories about a farming community in Kentucky during the Depression. It sounds like the stories would be very boring and depressing but they are very hopeful and refreshing. Here is a portion of a four page poem I really liked from his new book.

"And just as tenderly to be known
are the affections that make a woman and a man,
their household, and their homeland one.
These too, though known, cannot be told
to those who do not know them, and fewer
of us learn them, year by year,
loves that are leaving the world like the colors of extinct birds,
like the songs of a dead language.

Think of the genius of the animals,
every one truly what it is:
gnat, fox, minnow, swallow each made
of light and luminous within itself.
They know (better than we do) how
to live in the places where they live.
And so I would like to be a true
human being, dear reader- a choice
not altogether possible now."

No comments: