“Energy,” said William Blake, “is Eternal Delight.” And the scientific prognosticators of our time have begun to speak of the eventual opening, for human use, of “infinite” sources of energy. In speaking of the use of energy, then, we are speaking of an issue of religion, whether we like it or not. For Wendell Berry, … Continue reading The Eternal Delight Of Decay
Islay. The name conjures salt water-spray off the North Atlantic, peat bogs rich with all that decays, limestone, spring water, geese and thrushes. And whisky. Laphroaig, Lagavulin and Ardbeg on the southeast shore of the island. Bunnahabhain and Caol Ila to the northeast. Bowmore, Bruichladdich and Port Charlotte around Loch Indaal in the middle of … Continue reading Terroir And Smoke: Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2007 And Smoked Catfish Étouffée With Readings From Sir Albert Howard, Aldo Leopold and Eliot Coleman.
In Chapter Three of The Unsettling of America, “The Ecological Crisis as a Crisis of Agriculture,” Wendell Berry pointedly defends the primacy of “wilderness” within the conservation movement in America. What has to be acknowledged at the outset is that wilderness conservation is important and that it has a place in any conservation program, just … Continue reading Wilderness, Good Oak, And Moby Dick
Ah, REO Speedwagon back in the early eighties. I had traded in my Britannia Bell Bottoms, silk shirts and platform shoes for thin black ties, Guess jeans, and high tops. The air bristled with “Roll with the Changes” and “Time for Me to Fly,” (the latter became the song for my 1981 graduating class) well … Continue reading You Can’t Tuna Fish, But You Can Smoke It!
Grant Wood’s 1930 painting of a pitchfork-wielding farm couple heralds our return to Wendell Berry’s The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture. How to interpret this portrait? How to interpret American Gothic, which to my mind means the short stories of Edgar Allan Poe. Through the lens of The Unsettling of America, an interpretation becomes … Continue reading Unsettling America
Two years ago I fell into reading Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma and this act opened the books of Joel Saladin, Carlo Petrini, Sir Albert Howard, Aldo Leopold, Daniel Barber and many others. And, of course, I read Wendell Berry. Poet and farmer, Berry coined the key sentence for all of us who understand there … Continue reading And Now For Something Completely Different . . . And Yet There’s Always A Bone.