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This essay collection by Pulitzer Prize winner Snyder (A Place in Space) contains the latest thoughts of a great poet with a lifelong devotion to the world, humanity, and literature. Snyder discusses his ideas of nature as process, energy exchange, and wilderness and how people should relate to the world, to deep history, and to each other from many different approaches. The focus of his interests is the Pacific Rim area, from the western United States to China and Japan. Snyder's personal and academic lives—he grew up in the West and has homesteaded in the Sierra Nevada since 1970—are used as touchstones of knowledge and enlightenment. Writers, nature, the myths of the Japanese and Native Americans, government fire policy, animals, plants, and language are all discussed and interwoven. Some ideas and thoughts Snyder had as a young man have changed throughout the years, which he interprets as part of the joyous nature of life. Poets Allen Ginsberg and Philip Whalen are briefly bid farewell. Snyder's visit to his great-grandmother's grave is especially wonderful, and the memorial statement to his wife on the last page is beautiful. Perfect reading for our troubled times; highly recommended.
—Gene Shaw Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information