ABOUT THIS BOOK
As it erupted in 1980, Mount St. Helens captured the attention of the region, nation, and world, and it continues to fascinate us today: a constant reminder that we live in volcano country. In lucid prose and poetry by some of America's leading writers and scientists, In the Blast Zone explores this story of destruction and renewal in all its human, geological, and ecological dimensions. Most popular accounts of the momentous eruption have focused on the devastation it caused. More recent scientific work on Mount St. Helens tells a story of unexpectedly rapid and varied ecological and geological change.
In the Blast Zone is the first book to present a cross-pollination of literary and scientific perspectives on the mountain's history of cataclysm and renewal. Most of the contributors to this volume camped together on Mount St. Helens for four days, hiking, observing, and sharing ideas. They asked the question: What can this radically altered landscape tell us about nature and how to live our lives? In the Blast Zone collects some of their answers. While introducing ecological and geological insights, it also tells compelling stories about how science and literature inform our lives and our relationship to nature.
These writings will startle readers with new recognition of the matchless gifts of Mount St. Helens: the gifts of beauty, of illumination, of hope. The Contributors Gary Braasch, John Calderazzo, Christine Colasurdo, Charlie Crisafulli, John Daniel, Jerry Franklin, Charles Goodrich, Robin Kimmerer, Ursula K. LeGuin, Tim McNulty, Kathleen Dean Moore, Nalini Nadkarni, Robert Michael Pyle, Scott Russell Sanders, James Sedell, Gary Snyder, Kim Stafford, Frederick J. Swanson, Tony Vogt, Ann Zwinger, Susan Zwinger
Charles Goodrich is Program Director of the Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word at Oregon State University and the author of The Practice of Home: Biography of a House.
Kathleen Dean Moore is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Oregon State University and co-founder and senior fellow of OSU’s Spring Creek Project of Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word. She is the coeditor of the award-winning Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril and the author of Wild Comfort, Riverwalking—winner of a Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award—and The Pine Island Paradox—winner of the Oregon Book Award.
Frederick J. Swanson is a Research Geologist with the USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station, in Corvallis, Oregon. He is co-editor of Ecological Responses to the 1980 Eruption of Mount St. Helens and has spent his career working on interactions of geological and ecological forces in mountain lands.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Coming Back to the Lady, Ursula K. LeGuin 2
Change, Survival, and Revival: Lessons from Mount St. Helens,
Charlie Crisafulli 10
The Way to Windy Ridge, Tim McNulty 17
In Endless Song, Kathleen Dean Moore 22
Volcanic Blues; or, How the Butterfly Tamed the Volcano,
Robert Michael Pyle 28
Mount St. Helens, John Calderazzo 36
On the Ridge, Robin Kimmerer 41
In the Zone: Notes from Camp, Tony Vogt 47
To Mount St. Helens, John Daniel 52
A Gardener Goes to the Volcano, Charles Goodrich 56
Evolutionary Impacts of a Blasted Landscape,
Jerry E Franklin 62
Mountains and Mosses, Nalini M. Nadkarni 70
Everlasting Wilderness, Christine Colasurdo 77
Science Tribes on Mount St. Helens, James Sedell 84
Two Stones, Scott Russell Sanders 92
Nature's Shaking Keeps Me Steady, Susan Zwinger and
Ann Zwinger 99
What if I Chose? Kim Stafford 104
Languages of Volcanic Landscapes, Frederick J. Swanson 105
Pearly Everlasting, Gary Snyder 114
For Further Reading 118
By Way of Thanks 123