Welcome to February’s GMBG, my monthly book:earthling dating agency. My attempt at a good match this month is The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry and Grev.
I have known Grev since I was a teenager, although in truth I don’t know him at all. I have seen him perhaps twice in the last thirty years. We are Facebook friends. He is on my postcard list and I am never quite sure if he thinks this is a little odd or perhaps that I am stalking him. Which in retrospect will only be made worse by me sending him a random book. But I’m not, and the book isn’t random. Let me tell you a few things that I have gleaned. Forgive me if I am wrong.
Grev is a Cornishman, I thought I should mention that first, but he is also a citizen of the world. He is politically savvy; he scrabbles in the mire in an attempt to find diamonds. Sometimes he despairs of folk, occasionally he is sad but, more often than not, he is very funny. He is a musician and I have often been guided in a new direction by the tunes he shares. He cares. And I like him. And he likes poems.
Wendell Berry is a Kentucky farmer who writes poetry and prose. I cannot vouch for his agricultural skills, but his writing is exemplary. Not only does he observe beautifully, submerging into his immediate surroundings, he is also a rebel, a revolutionary, a man who observes the larger picture and rails against it. He can write a love poem to his wife, a tree or old friends and all are equally touching. My copy of this book is kept close. I delve frequently and am forever amazed by the joy his words give me.
I’m hoping they give a little joy to Grev too.