On Eagle Pond (Paperback)
A life well-lived in rural New England, through the eyes of a master essayist and poet. This collection includes Donald Hall's Seasons at Eagle Pond, Here at Eagle Pond, the poem "Daylilies on the Hill," and many uncollected pieces.
Here is Donald Hall on letter writing, possessions, the past, wood stoves, the weather, the Boston Red Sox, satellite dishes, and much more from Eagle Pond Farm - his ancestral home in New Hampshire, where he visited his grandparents as a young boy. Throughout, Hall beautifully narrates the flow of one season into then next, taking the good with the bad and moving on, knowing that the cycle always begins again. Approaching all facets of life with a sense of simplicity and love, Hall's distills the human experience so uniquely that readers will return to these essays again and again, each time learning something new.
In celebration of New England and the seasons, the poet laureate of New Hampshire records his love of place. The place is a 180-year-old farmland, Eagle Pond, the home of Hall's grandparents and now his home. "There's no reason to live here except for love," writes Hall as he describes the sight of huge Holsteins frolicking or, when impatient for the arrival of spring, he suggests pushing winter "off to a condominium in the keys of Antarctica." This collection of four essays by a close observer of the natural world is a blend of reminiscences, anecdotes and vignettes that capture continuity of family and the quiet delights of rural life in each season.-- Publishers Weekly
Hall gives us an intimate sketch of his beloved New Hampshire, where he summered with his grandparents at their homestead on Eagle Pond in Danbury: "By the time I was sixteen I daydreamed of living here as a writer; in my twenties I learned that this was impractical; in my forties I did it." All four essays lucidly entwine Hall's past and present lives. Unfortunately, they are self-consciously nostalgic and therefore somewhat oppressive; perhaps because this was the season of Hall's childhood, "Summer" is the best realized. Still, this provides yet another backdrop against which we may examine Hall's poetry, his fiction, and his plays.--Library Journal