This sense of mystery, of close communion with all of nature, this sense of seeing more than appears at the surface, this continuance of the sense of wonder and awe, this delight in all natural phenomena is perhaps the most precious thing you have. The movement of a cae is like a reed in the wind , he writes. Superbly illustrated with 38 black-and-white drawings by Francis Lee Jaques, The Singing Wilderness is a book that no lover of nature will want to be without. This is the price excluding postage and handling fees a seller has provided at which the same item, or one that is nearly identical to it, is being offered for sale or has been offered for sale in the recent past. The essays are ordered by season, from canoeing in the summer to snowshoeing in the Winter. It was alive, almost fluid and pulsating, and as I watched it sink I thought that I could feel the earth turning from it, actually feel its rotation.
Our long evolutionary background proves that we are at one with all forms of life. Access codes may or may not work. They do not join him in the outdoors. On June 10, Olson sent the introduction, four sample chapters, and the table of contents to Rodell. The narrative below, an excerpt from A Wilderness Within: The Life of Sigurd F. Paddling a canoe, therefore, becomes much more than a way to get from one point to another. In short if I can in some way touch this order then I will be accomplishing my purpose.
What a beautiful mood you caught. The House at Coates- about 15 chapters — 4-5 pages each of 300 words per page making 1200 to 1500 for each chapter totalling 18,000 words. An owl hooted somberly in the timber of the dark shores, a sound that accentuated the quiet on the open lake. Through Yvonne, Sigurd belatedly discovered that Robert shared his philosophical and cultural interests, and he began opening up intellectually to his son as well. Start with ordinary things, what kind of a book would you want to read.
I like to use it too. With this knowledge you can broaden your selection. I have traveled there many times, and Olson perfectly captures the sense of awe this place inspires in me and many others. It was a release for him, and possibly a relief, to have someone he could talk to about the search for meaning, that driving force of his life which few seemed to understand. They can find it in all of these things in different ways. Like most books of the sort, The Singing Wilderness imparts a vivid sense of place, contains affectionate descriptions of the flora and fauna encountered in that place, and is organized episodically, employing a standard seasonal format. We are in receipt of your valued missile of current date and are taking this opportunity to return same.
There must be something more, something of your own best thinking, something that will contribute a thought or two in everything you write. On the prairie those sensations are different. The Indians had it and felt it strongly. Who can gather into notes and measures the song of the forest, the cyclic tides of verdure, the dance of the hills and mountains, the metric march of the seasons? Olson also limns essays that show the brutality of nature. Begin at once, working your outlines, your approach will crystallize. Your job this summer is to try and write a chapter of the book.
But the bumblebee does fly. Olson 1899-1982 was one of the greatest environmentalists of the twentieth century. And much more, with something to satisfy every taste for wilderness experience. There is a moment of suspense when the quiet can be felt, when it presses down on everything. Work and rework these chapters and make them so good that this book will set the stage for others, bring calls for speaking, so that you will know that this is it.
You cannot vary an iota from the main purpose of your choice. The formula is so simple. You have enough material for a book right now if it is organized and put in some sort of a sequence, have some sort of thread running through it. I judged from your reactions that you thought readers would be more interested in my personal natural history observations and adventures in the wilderness than my abstract philosophy and feeling. To see these documents in larger context, read. His essays both describe the experience of traveling in the wilderness, and relate lessons Olson gleaned over the years of studying the landscape and its many diverse inhabitants, from As a writer, Sigurd Olson is a lyrical evangelist for wild places. For twenty years agents and editors had told him there was no market for his essays, but after six years of traveling the country as a professional conservationist, he was convinced they were wrong.
Undated, February 1954 Suggestion for the Book It is not enough to recount the things you have seen or experienced. We might as well go over his letter point by point. You have enough now if you want to stop and polish. Acute natural perceptivity and a profound knowledge of the relationships to be found in nature combine here in vivid evocations of the sights, the sounds, the vast stillnesses, and the events of the wilderness as the seasons succeed each other. Olson was born in Chicago in 1899, and educated at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Illinois. Pages can include considerable notes-in pen or highlighter-but the notes cannot obscure the text.