Like many of us who experience biophilia, when it comes to our most existential lifeline—the natural world—I exist in a personal and anthropogenic dissonance of celebration and mourning, vision and blindness. I want to explore these tensions, and the questions they raise about reciprocity, through the topic of beauty. Why do we find other life and geological forms so compelling and yet not sufficiently connect their survival with our own? What does nature’s beauty have to do with us, and us with it? This presentation is from the viewpoint of a poet—not a scientist—who is attempting to go more deeply into her intertwined senses of wonder at what we are given and grief at what we are losing, and find some beauty there.
This webinar is part of the year-long Exploring Connections to and Stewardship of the Natural World talks. This series is supported by a grant through the NH Humanities Council and aims to provide a public and personal space for the examination of environmental ethics, fostering a deeper understanding of, appreciation for, and care of, our natural world. Programs are free to the public, and streamed via Zoom, YouTube, and Facebook Live.
For more information and to see the entire slate of talks, visit our series webpage.
Alice B. Fogel is the previous New Hampshire poet laureate (2014-2019). She is the author of 5 poetry collections, including Interval: Poems Based on Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” which won the N. Schaffner Award for Music in Literature and the NH Literary Award. Another poetry book is due out around the end of 2021, and she is also the author of Strange Terrain, on how to appreciate poetry without necessarily “getting” it. Among other awards, Alice has been given a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and her poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including Best American Poetry. She teaches reading and writing workshops in a wide range of areas, works one-on-one with students with learning differences at Landmark College, and hikes mountains whenever possible.