A Week Up North

Does anyone outside of Wisconsin know what the term “Up North” means?* To me, Up North is the northern third of Wisconsin where residents of the lower two thirds go to fish, hike, boat, hunt, and water ski. The city of Wausau is not far enough north to be Up North,...

The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius

Last week’s blog was about the book Suttree. Recalling the challenges of reading that book brought up memories of other books that have given me a tough time. Anything by Emerson fits that description. Also it reminded me of the following bizarre little story: Many...

Reading Suttree

Three weeks ago I was deciding whether to make the effort to read something by Charles Bowden. After several easy-to-read crime novels, I was looking to challenge myself a bit. I got thirty pages into Blues for Cannibals and returned it to the library. I was not put...

What Do You Suppose I Planted?

I have a good view of my garden from the window in Clare’s bedroom. Ordinarily I’d have no reason to be in her room, but she  has moved to Madison and left me responsible for her aquarium. The only reason she even has an active aquarium is that she took pity on a half...

Pembine

I may have added a new element to my daily routine. Prior to last Wednesday, most of my days started with two+ hours of writing, followed by a walk with my dog (on which Manyu usually came along). Later in the day I took a long bicycle ride. Fishing, hiking, reading,...

Reading

I am drawn to good simple writing (e.g., William Saroyan, Willa Cather, John Steinbeck, Ivan Doig, James Lee Burke), but once or twice a year I take on an author who I consider complicated. The catch with complicated writing is that I must decide, sometimes in as few...
Steven Simpson