April 22, 2017

Humility and Truth: A Conversation with Wendell Berry

As I wrote my book, Wendell Berry and the Given Life, there were many questions that came as I reflected on his work. Some were answered in continued reading, but others still lingered. With paper and a postal stamp, using his preferred mode of communication, I sent Berry six questions whose answers I thought would be helpful for readers to move from reading into the practice of creatureliness.

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God in the Garden

In the beginning, God made a garden, rich with compost and humus, a black loam that smelled of dawn. Seeds began sprouting in this soil; trees’ roots wound deep within it as their branches reached toward the sun; grass, clover, and forbs of every kind spread over the earth in a green and golden carpet. God took some of this dirt, made muddy with dew, and formed a creature from it—a body of soil. Bending down, God breathed spirit, animus, into the earth so that it became an animal—a living thing.

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