A brain-injured woman bicycles a trailer of roosters to a cock fight and finds her goodness in the dust and blood. An orphaned elk - nursed by a hermit and a disagreeable goat - fends off contenders for his herd and finally dies as a hunter's prize. An abused horse trainer frees the soul of his mother by stealing a broken stallion. A grounded spiritual and philosophical wisdom shines through each of the eight short stories and paired poems in Earthly Existentialism. In this genre-busting work, Patricia Herron, retired professor of philosophy and religious studies, brings her lifelong studies together with her poetic imagination and vivid experience of life in rural Eastern Oregon. With a lyrical attention to the inner worlds of animals and people reminiscent of Brian Doyle, Herron is every bit the artist that she is the academic. Kim Stafford, director of the Northwest Writing Institute at Lewis & Clark College says, "Earthy Existentialism will enrich you, haunt you, engage your mind and heart-like memories of resonant episodes you haven't lived, until now."The fiction conveys a sense of the profound, momentous choices made by characters whose lives go unnoticed. The characters are "nobody special", and yet Herron's writing elucidates their deep, complex and unwitnessed inner experience. Their existential plight is all of ours who are not heroes, seeking to make lives of meaning without yet Herron's writing deep and complex inner experience nobody is noticing. They are common people whose lives many might see as meaningless. Herron concludes with four essays that illuminate the philosophical ideas in her work, deftly speaking to both novice and academic alike. Through this blending, we see philosophy on the ground in a way that no non-fiction book or lecture could convey, such as how two characters separately arrive at a salve for their existential fear of death by stealing toilet paper.
Author: Gregory J. Johanson Phd, Patricia Herron Publisher: Independently Published Published: 04/09/2019 Pages: 186 Binding Type: Paperback Weight: 0.62lbs Size: 9.00h x 6.00w x 0.43d ISBN: 9781093136838