Winter: A Spiritual Biography of the Season

Overview

For many, winter is a time of postponed activity-and of shoveling snow, navigating ice, and trying to keep warm. What can easily be forgotten in winter's cold and occasional dreariness is that it can also be a time of shoring up, of purity, praise, delight, and play.

In thirty stirring pieces-from translated Sanskrit and Hebrew poems to Henry David Thoreau and Basho, Jane Kenyon, John Updike, Kathleen Norris, and Annie Dillard-we share in the recognition of winter's hardships ...

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Overview

For many, winter is a time of postponed activity-and of shoveling snow, navigating ice, and trying to keep warm. What can easily be forgotten in winter's cold and occasional dreariness is that it can also be a time of shoring up, of purity, praise, delight, and play.

In thirty stirring pieces-from translated Sanskrit and Hebrew poems to Henry David Thoreau and Basho, Jane Kenyon, John Updike, Kathleen Norris, and Annie Dillard-we share in the recognition of winter's hardships and celebrate the glory of winter as a spiritual gift-a quiet time in the rhythm of life, a time of thoughtfulness, of looking forward, and of unexpected hope.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This outstanding anthology features top-flight nature and spirituality writers on the fierce, inexorable season of winter. This is not the place to seek warm fuzzy odes to sleigh rides and hot cider, though those images appear occasionally. Rather, these authors speak to the brutal barrenness of winter, its frozen tundra a witness to the manner in which spirituality requires dormant, seemingly infertile periods before bursting into life. Included are excerpts from Kathleen Norris's Dakota, in which she ruminates on the apparent impossibility of the Dakota cold, and three selections from noted spirituality writer Annie Dillard. New England resident Jamaica Kincaid reflects upon the struggles of a "winter garden," while E. B. White recalls "the winter of the great snows." White rather sheepishly confesses to liking the cold, the dark and the housebound nature of winter. Excellent essays by Ron Hansen, Will Campbell, Jane Kenyon and Henry David Thoreau are remarkably lively and warm, despite the icy subject. (Dec.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781893361928
  • Publisher: Skylight Paths Publishing
  • Publication date: 9/1/2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.84 (d)

Meet the Author

Gary Schmidt teaches literature at Calvin College. He is coeditor of Winter: A Spiritual Biography of the Season; Autumn: A Spiritual Biography of the Season and Spring: A Spiritual Biography of the Season (all SkyLight Paths). He is also author of Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy, a Newbery Honor book; Mara's Stories: Glimmers in the Darkness, a Fanfare 2002 Horn Book honor list book; Straw into Gold; and, with Lawrence Kushner, In God's Hands.

Susan M. Felch teaches literature at Calvin College and is coeditor of Winter: A Spiritual Biography of the Season; Autumn: A Spiritual Biography of the Season and Spring: A Spiritual Biography of the Season. She also edited The Collected Works of Anne Vaughan Lock and Bakhtin and Religion.

Barry Mosher, one of the foremost illustrators working today, has illustrated many books for adults and children, including The Pennyroyal Caxton edition of the King James Bible and Lewis Carroll's Alice: Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There.

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