My Life with Trees
Born in northeast Newfoundland to a family with deep roots in forestry, trapping, and guiding, Gary Saunders’ love of the natural world developed early and stayed with him throughout his life.
Originally trained as a boots-on-the-ground forester, Saunders’ passion for painting and writing led him to also study the fine arts and to take a job writing and editing for the Nova Scotia Department of Lands and Forests, producing newsletters and educational material for the general public.
Later, as a freelance writer, his illustrated articles about trees and rural living would become a regular feature for over three decades in several regional magazines.
At heart, this book is an unconventional memoir. While organized by tree species like a reference book, Saunders’ essays actually impart equal parts natural and personal history.
And like the best sylvan essayists of earlier generations (Thoreau, Leopold), Saunders draws greater truths about our relationship with nature–and with each other–out of what on first glance might appear to be recitals of botanical facts or yarns about adventures past.
A close reading of this book promises not only to expand one’s understanding of the ecology of the forest, but also to offer a rich, evocative model for how we might better live our lives with trees.
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