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Absence And Light: Meditations From The Klamath Marshes by John R. Campbell

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By John R. Campbell

A set of forty four prose meditations encouraged via the transitory and bird-rich surroundings of the Klamath marshes at the Oregon/California border. "In order to simply accept the large accountability that comes of being on this planet, we needs to first conceive, inspite of all of the hindrances, the country of truly being the world." it's therefore that John R. Campbell got here to the Klamath marshes, a wetland in southern Oregon shaped through 3 historic, shallow lakes, an enormous vacancy that's sarcastically domestic to an awesome range of existence, of untold millions of birds either migratory and resident, of the entire interconnected existence varieties that make up one in all North America's richest common environments. Absence and light-weight is Campbell's account of his exploration of the marshes and a meditation at the international he chanced on there, on his growing to be realizing of the actual, emotional, ethical, and aesthetic that means of that global, on his personal development as a guy. via Campbell's eyes, we realize the stirring and remarkable great thing about the marshes and their creatures, and the utter poignancy in their fragility earlier than the heedless objectives of humankind. this is often nature writing at its such a lot profound and relocating, writing that during analyzing and defining the area of nature is helping us to appreciate the very advanced and contradictory realities of being human. Campbell's luminous descriptions and mystical insights will lengthy linger within the reader's reminiscence.

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Whole worlds can shimmer in layers and folds just above the marsh. Whether or not one ever visits the Klamath Basin, one can inhabit this place as spirit, whether a political presence, a moral presence, or a purely natural presence. One can realize the impossibly Romantic notion of the individual as it is actually borne out in nature: we are each nodes in a vast and intricate web that vibrates subtly, everywhere, with every local movement. Is this notion the impetus for driving so many miles to witness a ¦at and soggy landscape, to notice the birds oblivious to the rain?

Water and grain attract them as they stage for their journey. If we allow it, a few inches of water can contain all of history. Whole worlds can shimmer in layers and folds just above the marsh. Whether or not one ever visits the Klamath Basin, one can inhabit this place as spirit, whether a political presence, a moral presence, or a purely natural presence. One can realize the impossibly Romantic notion of the individual as it is actually borne out in nature: we are each nodes in a vast and intricate web that vibrates subtly, everywhere, with every local movement.

My father’s gift takes the form of the gaps between us, constantly šlled and constantly emptied. This evening, a violent front is moving in from the sea. Each of its šngers crosses the roads with shadow and then dissolves and falls to earth. The wild geese settle in, the rain and tiny hail rolling off their backs. The cormorants close their wings and look to the clouds, their prehistoric gestures and their reptilian faces benign. It’s been this way always—generations severed at some crucial nexus, and other life moving into the resulting void.

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