The Heart of Things

The Heart of Things

A Midwestern Almanac

eBook - 2014
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""I've never believed that living in one place means being one thing all the time, condemned like Minnie Pearl to wear the same hat for every performance. Life is more complicated than that." In this remarkable book of days, John Hildebrand charts the overlapping rings-home, town, countryside-of life in the Midwest. Like E.B. White, Hildebrand locates the humor and drama in ordinary life: church suppers, Friday night football, outdoor weddings, garden compost, family reunions, roadside memorials, camouflage clothing. In these wry, sharply observed essays, the Midwest isn't The Land Time Forgot but a more complicated (and vastly more interesting) place where the good life awaits once we figure exactly out what it means. From his home range in northwestern Wisconsin, Hildebrand attempts to do just that by boiling down a calendar year to its rich marrow of weather, animals, family, home-in other words, all the things that matter."-- Provided by publisher.
"In lyrical prose, author John Hildebrand charts the seasons, landscapes, and people of the Midwest. In the same way that E.B. White's essays documented life in Maine, Hildebrand creates a unique portrait of Wisconsin by focusing on ordinary life through the seasons. The almanac style of month-by-month chapters invites readers to approach the book from any direction, entering at whatever chapter strikes their mood at time--January if that's what month it happens to be or July if one is sick of the snow and anticipating summer. Whether describing a night ski race across Chequamegon Bay, a Friday-night fish boil at his local parish, or a possum playing dead atop his backyard compost pile, Hildebrand portrays a place both familiar and fresh. As he explains, "I've never accepted the idea that being from the Midwest meant being one thing all the time, condemned like Minnie Pearl to wear the same hat for every performance. Our lives are more complicated than that. Even when I've written about what appear to be fixed traditions, like church suppers or small town football or deer hunting--they're just snapshots in time. The essays include revised Wisconsin Trails pieces (now free of their 700-word limit) and others pieces written for magazines such as Sports Illustrated, plus a few completely new essays"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Madison, WI : Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2014.
ISBN: 9780870206733
Characteristics: 1 online resource


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