Frog Run: Words and Wildness in the Vermont Woods
Author: John Elder
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
The North Woods tradition of making maple syrup serves as an illuminating backdrop for John Elder's reflections on nature, literature, playfulness, and fatherhood, as he builds a sugaring house with his sons.
The tail end of the sugaring season in New England is called the "frog run," when pools of snowmelt teem with frogs and the last run of sap good for making syrup flows from the maple trees. For John Elder, a longtime resident of Vermont, a professor of English, and a man at midlife, this moment is a metaphor of loss and resurgence.
In The Frog Run, Elder describes how he found a way to balance his passions for literature and for the outdoors by building a sugarhouse with his sons in the Vermont woods. For Elder, who also writes in this book about the resurgence of New England forests and about his life as a reader--moving from the game of Go to the Psalms and Bashō--the frog run is a time to savor and celebrate the fleeting beauties of his family's place on earth.
Moving and elegant, The Frog Run is a testimony to the value of embracing what seems lost.