November 10, 2011

Wendell Berry Visits the Swannanoah Valley

The house was packed last night at Warren Wilson College for an evening reading and discussion with author and farmer Wendell Berry. Wendell, accompanied by his sweet wife Tanya and daughter Mary Berry Smith, was his usual charming self, slow to speak, intentional in word, full of joy. He read a short story written from the perspective of Martin (Mart) Rowenberry, a response, or conclusion even, to the story "Making it Home" which appears in Fidelity. It was a wonderful reading, about an hour in length, walking us through the mind and thoughts of Mart Rowenberry, 40 years after his return to Kentucky from WWII. There was a great dog/squirrel chase scene about mid-way through, appropriate for this time of year for those of us dog owners living amongst the oaks :) Don't know when he'll be publishing more Port William stories, but I'll be on the lookout. His upcoming New and Collected Poems will be out in April 2012.

And, for the smile of it, a shot of Wes Jackson of the Land Institure, Wendell, and Tanya. Photo by Dennis Dimick.

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