Monday, March 11, 2013

Gretel Ehrlich on PBS NewsHour at UAlbany Tuesday

Nature writer Gretel Ehrlich, who visits UAlbany tomorrow 3/12, speaks on the PBS NewsHour about her new book Facing the Wave (2013), an account of her travels in Japan after the Tohoku earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown.

"There were moments when the grief aspect of emptiness just seemed so heavy that it was falling like rain, that it was just a deluge of sorry," she said. "I met a fireman who lost his wife, his two children, his mother and his father and was just wondering why he was alive and how he was going to begin again." Her poem "Emptiness Fall" reflects on that grief:

Emptiness Falls
Beginning. Again. But how?
Tonight's perfect moon-slice means
we are half here half gone.
Down deep sea urchins fatten on corpses
and the Missing roll on amnesia's tides.
All summer the body rains sweat and
emptiness falls from the standing dead.
Cedar. Rice field. Pine.

More on the NewsHour blog: