|A memoir of changes in the land and people|
|A serues if essays about grassland: great science and cadenced poetry all in one|
Reading two awesome books by a contemporary (just five or six years older than me), you can hardly blame me for wanting to talk to Joe, to contact him and let him know how much appreciated his work his prose. I was hatching a secret plan to see if we couldn't invite him to speak, perhaps at a lecture series. I was savoring the possibility that we might walk together around Denver Botanic Gardens, or on Mt. Goliath: For me, books are a kind of tangible friendship--alas! Most of my favorite authors are classics whom I shall not meet in this life. But Joe lives only down the road in New Mexico! Heck, maybe I could drop in on him this summer?
Google search makes everything so much faster than it used to be: I punched in his name and the town he lived in and Google provided a long list of valuable information about Joe: there are several publications by Joe you can download off of various websites (just click on that link to see them)...and there was (here's the sucky part) his obituary and a wonderful tribute to him by the Wildlife Society.
In Circling back, Joe describes the pathway that took him back to his roots, and the appreciation of traditional American agrarian life practiced by his parents and grandparents. It is sobering when people more or less contemporary with you pass away like this, all the more so since I felt I had not only found an author I admired intensely, but someone who could be a friend.