A neighbor of ours – he lives in Bloomington, Indiana – writes books that are deep as well as effortless, planting ideas as smoothly as dropping stones gently into a pond.
Scott Russell Sanders, whose work I did not know, was the keynoter at the Mercantile Library’s Late-Blooming Writers Conference this year. After hearing him speak, taking life’s particulars to general understandings and then back again, I bought two of his books of essays: Force of Spirit (2000), and Secrets of the Universe – Essays on Family, Community, Spirit and Place (1991).
These are just eminently satisfying books. In Secrets, he is in the midst of raising children, loving his wife and making his way, and the essays reflect that. By the time he wrote Force of Spirit, he still loved his wife, loved his place in the world, and needed to include essays to each of his children on the occasion of their marriages.
Daily wisdom, a free-ranging mind, fearless and gentle – he dares to explore his thoughts, stand back and look at his own mind, and share with us what he sees.
He’s following a very human path to wholeness, and it’s a pleasure to take the journey with him.
p.s. I’ve not read his fiction, but will – the next time I get to the Mercantile.