Into the Woods

Whispers of old trees


Clatsop Trail in Ecola State Park, north of Cannon Beach, Oregon

Thank you for stepping INTO THE WOODS.

What you find here is peopled, weathered, and storied by the whispers of old trees, the calls of quirky crows, the howls of cunning coyotes, the yips of good dogs, the love and kindness of good people, and the songs and poetry of memories and dreams.

In my life and in my writing, I like to go places where all the ways of finding my way back would take forever. Anything may happen. My walks into the woods and wild places—both the literal and the metaphorical—reverse the curse I sometimes put on my own heart. I walk quietly into these places to take risks, to observe and reflect, to ease the uneasiness in my heart and mind, to connect with the natural world and my human communities, and to change my life for the better. That is also why I write.

I task myself with procuring wonder—from my past and present, my everyday experiences, the silence between the rumbles and the whispers, the shadows real and imagined, my longings and protracted heartbreaks, simple moments and complicated entanglements, unresolved pain and unbridled joy, and the landscape of home and not-so-faraway places.

Telling stories from the past and the present, I try to examine them closely and be honest with what they reveal to me about a place, a person, an animal, and my own nature. While the outcome is not always my heart’s desire, there is always a lesson learned or a new awareness realized. Memories and dreams slip and ooze, melancholy and optimism rest and awaken, and gratitude grows.

May you walk into the woods and be reminded that there is always more to know and feel. As long as we have breath, there is always more to listen for and learn from the whispers of old trees. Have a good visit here.

Cheryl Kuck

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