Close observation and wise reflection
In Litchfield County Journal: Note on Wildness All Around Us—Washington author Edwin Matthews explores our relationship with the natural world one essay at a time.
“The existential predicament of all life on earth is that we are together, all refugees on this solitary planet spinning in space, and that there is no other place,“ he writes. “This predicament is no less descriptive in my comparatively domesticated corner of northwestern Connecticut than it is in the most remote wilderness on the earth. It is no less true now when I program my smart phone than it was when our ancestors picked up that first stone tool. So, I have sought to learn from, and to find wonder in, the wilderness around me. “
It’s as if, in a year when Connecticut has experienced macrobursts, Miami-style heat, random deluges, and windstorms, we’ve received an alarming wake-up call. In the face of an atmosphere drugged and pumped with CO2, Matthews zeroes in on fundamentals.
A Northern Idaho native, he has long been a luminary in his field, founding Friends of the Earth, a global environmental organization and remaining a life trustee of EarthJustice, a not-for-profit environmental law firm. He practiced law in New York, Paris, and San Francisco, but now calls his Washington farm home.
“Close observation, wise reflection, careful and supple writing—this book belongs on the shelf of anyone who loves New England’s pastoral and wild beauty,” Bill McKibben, author of “The End of Nature,” writes.