Synopses & Reviews
Much the way Donald Hall's Seasons at Eagle Pond
captured New England, Sky Time in Gray's River
captures the essence of the Pacific Northwest by telling the story of Robert Pyle's life in rural Washington. One of the earliest communities established near the mouth of the Columbia River, the village of Gray's River is only tenuously connected to the world of the twenty-first century.
Although Pyle is a lepidopterist and the Gray's River region is notable for its lack of butterflies, something about the place spoke to him three decades ago, and he has lived there, in the same house, ever since. This book brings Gray's River to life by compressing those thirty years into twelve chapters, following the lives of humans, animals, and plants month by month through the seasons. By demonstrating how the village has changed his life, Pyle illustrates how a special place can change anyone lucky enough to find it and he highlights how much is being lost in a world of accelerating sameness, speed, and mobility. Above all, Sky Time shows that you don't have to travel far to see something new every day if you know how to look.
"Pyle has the ability to find wonder in the mundane and beauty in the unpretentious. His appreciation of nature helps us look at the world around us with more wonder." Library Journal
"If you love the Northwest and need a midwinter infusion of natural charm, curl up with Sky Time, brew a cup of herbal tea and dream of the coming sun." Seattle Times
"An instant classic about a little-visited Northwest place....It is the sterling capstone to the accomplishments of Robert Michael Pyle." Seattle-Post Intelligencer
An ecologist and author of Chasing Monarchs reflects on the everyday natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest as he describes the lives of plants, animals, and humans through every season of the year during his thirty years living in the village of Gray's River, near the mouth of the Columbia River.
About the Author
Robert Michael Pyle is the author of fourteen books, including Chasing Monarchs, Where Bigfoot Walks, and Wintergreen, which won the John Burroughs Medal. A Yale-trained ecologist and a Guggenheim Fellow, he is a full-time writer living in southwestern Washington.
Table of Contents
Beforetimes: Going to Ground in Grays River 1 1. The Time of Mew Gulls 8 2. Frogsong 25 3. When Echo Azures Fly 41 4. The Time of Trilliums 60 5. Arrivals 79 6. Swallowtails and Swainsons 100 7. Days of Mist and Thistles 117 8. The Time of Hay and Berries 134 9. Departures 156 10. Chinooks and Chanterelles 174 11. Tree Time 194 12. The Time of Rising Water 212 Aftertimes: Throwing the Cat on the Compost 232 Notes and Acknowledgments 243