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A collection of transcendent, lyrical essays on life in the American West, the classic companion to Gretel Ehrlich’s new book, Unsolaced
“Wyoming has found its Whitman.” —Annie Dillard
Poet and filmmaker Gretel Ehrlich went to Wyoming in 1975 to make the first in a series of documentaries when her partner died. Ehrlich stayed on and found she couldn’t leave. The Solace of Open Spaces is a chronicle of her first years on “the planet of Wyoming,” a personal journey into a place, a feeling, and a way of life.
Ehrlich captures both the otherworldly beauty and cruelty of the natural forces—the harsh wind, bitter cold, and swiftly changing seasons—in the remote reaches of the American West. She brings depth, tenderness, and humor to her portraits of the peculiar souls who also call it home: hermits and ranchers, rodeo cowboys and schoolteachers, dreamers and realists. Together, these essays form an evocative and vibrant tribute to the life Ehrlich chose and the geography she loves.
Originally written as journal entries addressed to a friend, The Solace of Open Spaces is raw, meditative, electrifying, and uncommonly wise. In prose “as expansive as a Wyoming vista, as charged as a bolt of prairie lightning” (Newsday), Ehrlich explores the magical interplay between our interior lives and the world around us.
Gretel Ehrlich is the author of This Cold Heaven, The Future of Ice, Heart Mountain, Facing the Wave, and The Solace of Open Spaces, among other works of nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Ehrlich studied at Bennington College and UCLA film school. She lives in Wyoming.
Romanticize the wild west? Ehrlich's ode to her love for Wyoming will indulge you. Cowboys, open skies, long drives and big weather - it's all here, delivered in her spare, beautiful prose.
~ recommended June, 2013
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: 12/02/1986 - 12:00am
On Sale: 12/02/1986 - 12:00am