Wild Comfort: The Solace of Nature

The Rev. Wendy L. Bell reviews Kathleen Dean Moore latest book. Wild Comfort: The Solace of Nature
Wild Comfort: The Solace of Nature

Wild Comfort

By Kathleen Dean Moore
Trumpeter, 2010, 256 pages, $15.95

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Kathleen Dean Moore originally set out to write a book about happiness, to learn precisely what makes a person glad. Instead, overcome by the loss of several friends, she turned to the natural world to explore death and grief.

She looked beyond the edges of things—under scrap metal and stones, beneath the surface of water—for signs of life in unlikely places.

She found life there, and in time, as she explored rivers, deserts, mountains, and island beaches; she also found comfort in the cycles of nature and in remembering that she belongs to the Earth. Hers is an invitation to us to experience our own belonging.

Moore, a philosophy professor, shows us that the Earth offers many gifts. She recounts with descriptive poignancy how moonlight rides the waves toward shore; how a rubber boa relaxes and comes alive in the warmth of the human hand; how it can feel to sit in the sun, savoring the air with a sense that is not quite smell, not quite taste, but something in between.

The world is astonishing. Life is powerful. And there is healing to be found if only we pay attention with our whole selves.


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