Such a Gift

Over the past week, my family has been immersed in the beauty of the natural world on a road trip west from our home in coastal Maine. We started out at a remote cabin on a lake in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, then visited friends at their farm in Orange County (central) Vermont, and hiked through the vistas and rock garden of World’s End State Park in Forksville, PA, before dropping into Highland County, Virginia to visit our good friends, Don and Carolyn Williams.

There will be more to come about my time with Don in his shop, but for now, I want to share a few snapshots of the glory we’ve been basking in. Our mission at M&T includes the aim to cultivate reverence for the natural world. We do this through engaging natural materials in handcraft. In fact, last week in the Apprenticeship program was “Greenwood” week, in which we have our apprentices felling trees with axes, riving stock, and carving with a sloyd knife. At the same time, they’re reading David Pye’s Nature and Art of Workmanship, so the forums are full of discussion about the value of the workmanship of risk and engaging nature with simple edge tools. It is a glorious thing to see reverence cultivated in this way. Handcraft is not separate from nature – it is our involvement in nature.

Vista at World's End State Park

Rock Garden at World's End State Park

Central Vermont in Autumn

So, I’ve been in basking mode. Soaking up the majesty of ancient oaks and maples, I’m grateful to receive such a gift.

Do what you can to get outside. There’s glory all around you.

– Joshua


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