A Simple Folk Remedy
There was a fear went forth and it entered the homes of nearly all the citizens. It
passed all the way to the horizon, past the saltmarsh and the shoremud, past the seacrows
scolding it for impertinence, past the farmers first and then the fishermen and then even
the tourists with their tan corduroy jackets with patches on the elbows and their boxes
and boxes of Bermuda shorts and their culottes and their unfinished woodworking
projects and their brand new ethnic clothing. It spread even to the scuba divers who
surfaced looking for the signs of a storm and found none.
Then a hermit came down from the mountains and said, “Draw nigh.” And the
people drew nigh, for the hermit was something they had forgotten. And the hermit said,
“When I am ill, I come down the mountain to see who I really am.”
“We are not ill,” said the people. “We have simply come to see the hermit because
he does not live in a correct manner,” said the people. And the hermit laughed, but not
too hard, so that he would not offend them.
And the hermit walked out into the field where the people had gathered and began
chasing rabbits. And the people laughed.
Pretty soon the people were chasing rabbits towards the hermit so they could watch
his funny antics as he tried to catch them. Of course, the hermit never caught any rabbits,
but when most of the people were in the field chasing rabbits towards him, he stopped
and began laughing even harder than the people had laughed. And the people and the
hermit were laughing so hard at each other that the rabbits became very confused and
they caught them.
You could almost see the fear receding from the people’s hearts and the horizon
beckoning once again to researchers and Winnebagos and pup tents and executive
leadership retreats and seminars on the art of sensual massage and wilderness hiking
renewal achievers and herbalists and new age urban insomnia children.
And the hermit went back to his mountain, refusing several offers of honorary
doctorates and chairs in religious studies programs and ate berries and roots and tried
hard to live in his own inadequate body.
Fiction. Modern Abstract Fables.
(First edition, hardcover with dustjacket, 524 pages, $36.50 USD.)
Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days draws from fairy tales, a condescending of a 1938 Social Studies reader for 6th grade, an 1890 handbook on marital compatibility, numerous annoying educational advancement studies, the myths and legends of third-world countries and minority peoples, pulp fiction, a history of carnival side shows, folktales, frequent conversations with Crows, Owls and a wide variety of underground inhabitants, insects and the people who collect them, Joseph Cornell, Günter Eich, Russell Edson, the French Surrealist poets, the Quay Brothers, letterpress printing, and the author’s inability to channel his imagination linearly.
Begin from the beginning, catch up, read daily. Just refer to the Burrow Guide.