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Introduction to Wendell Berry

If you don't know him, you should.

Dorothy Wickenden, “Wendell Berry’s Advice for a Cataclysmic Age,” The New Yorker, February 21, 2022. 

I associate the name Wendell Berry with a few choice words: place, stewardship, vision, friendship, simplicity, work, family, faith. Berry hits all those buttons for me, whether I'm reading his poetry or essays.

Wickenden’s report is as good an introduction to the Kentucky agrarian as you’ll find. She relates his history and various efforts to promote a simpler and more caring and conserving way of life.

Her visit with Berry and his wife Tanya showcases the many facets of Wendell Berry's calling as farmer, writer, professor, activist, reformer, and neighbor. Berry’s example of single-mindedness in a noble but hopeless cause is an example and challenge to me. He seems to know what he is to be about, and he is able to infect others with his vision and commitment, if only on a small and local scale. 

He has been an avid and attentive learner all his life. His literary productivity is enormous - 52 books, and in his 87th year, two more to be published in 2022. He cares not a fig for public relations or personal fame, but only to succeed at a life well-lived respecting God, His creation, and his neighbors.

Berry encourage us in the areas of vision, conviction, creativity, friendship, and hard work in pursuit of our calling from the Lord. I try to take an annual dose of his essays or poetry, and I am always blessed in doing so.

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