Sara Baker Michalak

The Garden Within

"Mindful observation of the natural world provides the substance for my writing, and shapes the nature of my inner journeying.  Lightscatter flashing across the chattering creek; autumn seed, wind-dispersed; old cobwebs beaded with tiny balls of snow-the valley is marbled with stories, clues, keys. These are my lines of inquiry."

From the book:

May 10

Perky juncos chat at the feeder. A deer, then a dozen more appear from the woods, silhouettes of camber and elegance sheering dawn's air. At the opening they steam, hot bodies awash in the valley's wet winter atmosphere. Fire breathers. They nuzzle the tree trunks, paw the underbrush, then trip lightly down the slope. One tentatively taps a hoof, testing the shore's cuticle. Now she raises her head, keen brown eyes and gracile lashes trembling with attention to some least thing out of place.  All at once they scatter, answering the mute call of untamed logic, and vanish.

This place leaves mystery's gradation all over me, deep enough to tangle every dead end with as many ways out, its ether the origin of my imagining. Writing, for instance: that falling, that trembling, that scattering and vanishing erupt with the same wild success that births the nuzzling muzzles and goldfinch gossip I put down on paper.

Ms. Michalak has an MA in Interdisciplinary Studies (English, Geoscience) from SUNY Fredonia, NY and has a BFA from RIT, School of Fine and Applied Arts at RIT,  Rochester, NY. She writes from her family home on the banks of the Canadaway Creek, in Dunkirk, New York, and propagates many species of native wildflowers there, as well. The Garden Within is her first published volume of essays.

The Garden Within
is a 72 page hand-stitched paper book w/spine.

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