YESTERDAY WAS a banner day for mid-March in Minnesota

YESTERDAY WAS a banner day for mid-March in Minnesota. So after the day’s chores I decided to take the motorcycle out for the first spin of the year. I stopped on a bluff across the river and was immediately struck by the view. Through the bare deciduous branches of shrubs and oaks, I was able to look straight down the

THIS MORNING the Pine Point Woods

THIS MORNING the Pine Point Woods and the old cabin are coated with a strange substance. It appears to have fallen from the sky, although that is uncertain. In any case, the fluffy coating—not seen much this winter—is lovely, and makes it possible to track some of our friends of the forest. This morning we see evidence of the nighttime

LAST NIGHT it rained

LAST NIGHT it rained here on Pine Point. In February! Despite the misplaced timing there was a certain satisfaction in awakening at 3:00am and hearing the soft moaning of trees and the steady rhythm of raindrops on the old cabin roof. As I lay there I was reminded of the many nights I have fallen asleep to the lullaby of

IF ONE OWNS or inhabits a piney woods

IF ONE OWNS or inhabits a piney woods, it is incumbent upon you to go for walks in the woods. It is a sin, in fact, if you do not. At least according to the Church O’ The Pines rulebook. And when you go for a walk it is only good form to take a walking stick. An old one.


WHEN WE FIRST CAME TO PINE POINT and the old cabin, the forest was choked with buckthorn. Had to literally fight and chop my way through it. Bought a machete! Along with chain saws, brush cutters, weed wrenches, etc. Even the main lot under the century white pines was bad, and the red pine lots nearly impenetrable. Better now. These

When you are in love with a place

WHEN YOU ARE IN LOVE with a place, you are in love with all the times and people, creatures and plants and stones, all the history and memories that make it unique and treasured. That make it your place, of all the places in all the world. The place where memories and dreams, laughter and tears and unspoken feelings come

The Oriole and The Eagle

THE ORIOLE AND THE EAGLE… Today we awaken back in the Pine Point woods—the Church O’ The Pines—after a week leading Road Scholars through the bluffs and valleys of SE Minnesota. In exploring the great Mississippi flyway we encountered scores of bird species, vast numbers of warblers, including the ever-sought Prothonotary—or the Swamp Candle, as I like to call it.

Wonderful Hours with My Grandparents

wonderful hours with my grandparents

WHEN I WAS a little boy, I spent a lot of time with my grandmother and grandad. And loved every minute of it. They lived in a small house in a deep but narrow lot, on a green and leafy street in Alton, Illinois. It was my favorite place in the world. And my favorite part of my favorite place