The Walk

William deBuys, Author
William deBuys, Author Trinity University Press $22.95 (155p) ISBN 978-1-59534-027-6
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Author and professor deBuys has been repeating the same journey ""up one arroyo, down another, back by the river...and up through the farm,"" every day for the past 27 years. In chronicling that daily walk and the contemplation it stirs, deBuys (River of Traps) has created another eloquent document of life in the mountain valleys of New Mexico. Bringing the Southwestern countryside to brilliant life, deBuys provides history of the wildlife that roam it, the inhabitants who claimed it and the current residents deBuys lives among, as well as more personal stories like the end of his long marriage and his friend's death from lung cancer. Each walk is a play between solitude and communion that ""lubricates the connections of thought"" and leads to unexpected insights: ""The walk is like a piece of music that I partly play and partly listen to...still trying to understand my part and how to play it."" As he ponders, mountain peaks become prayers, forests become dreams and the whole of it becomes an unfolding mystery that deBuys scours for signs of meaning, hope and the elusive connection between mankind and the wilderness around them: ""The landscape abounds with flaws, like those who walk it."" Anyone who enjoys a saunter in the great outdoors will find this memoir brimming with rich pleasures.
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