illogical landscapes

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Here's a quote from Charlotte Gill's Eating Dirt, which I just read for book group.  It was amazing! I will limit myself to only one quote right now, but I could seriously quote something off of every page. The subject made it a 4 star book for me  (set in PNW, forestry, weird subculture, etc.) but her writing elevated it to 5 stars.

"Clear-cuts are illogical landscapes, lunar in their barrenness yet bristling with big texture. The bucked limbs, the twisted trunks, and the rotten heartwood. The logs worth less than the cost of the haul to market. Traveling through clear-cuts is an unstable, three-dimensional affair. Imagine a field piled thick with car parts, knitting needles, coat hangers. Imagine climbing through hurricane wreckage. Add slope and cliffs and waterfalls and weather. Our technique for walking is like jujitsu, performed with both the hands and feet. Slash is a forest's post-mortem revenge, a sharp-toothed terrestrial sea. It's not our fault, but it might as well be. Every day the land takes a bite out of us."

okay, I lied. Here's a second quote from page 101

"Perhaps our fatal flaw is inquisitiveness. We don't know how to let an opportunity go by. If an object exists in this world, it can't stay intact, unexamined, unused. We're biological capitalists. If it lives we've got to make the best of it. We've got to hunt, cook, and taste it. Whatever it is, we've got to harness and ride it, pluck it and transform it, shave it down and build it up. We just have to glue, mold, freeze, and melt it into something else that hardly resembles that thing in its virgin state. We've got to get our hands on every last scrap and transform it into something useful, even if we have a million of those things already. We've got to cut it down and wring it out until that final ounce is gone. "
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