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Fun & philosophy from the pages of Woodlands & Prairies

If you want people to know about your past, run for public office.

Ole thinks about places to go

Ay haff been to a lot of places, but Ay’ve neffer been in Cahoots. Apparently yew can’t go dare alone. Yew haff to be in Cahoots vit anutter guy – or girl.

Ay’ve also neffer been in Cognito, eider. People tell me dat no von recognizes yew dare.

Ay vould like to go to Conclusions, but Ay hear dat yew haff to yump to get dare.

Ay haff, however, been in Sane. It does not haff an airport; yew haff to be driven dare. Ay haff made several trips, tanks to my friends and family.

Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft, and it’s the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor. Wernher von Braun

Humans need continuous and spontaneous affiliations with the biological world, and meaningful access to natural settings is as vital to the urban dweller as to any other.---Dr. Stephen Kellert, Yale University

Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.---Mahatma Gandhi

Hospitality is making your guests feel at home even when you wish they were.

There are worse things than getting a call for a wrong number at 4 a.m. Like it could be the right number.

A paleontologist is the best husband a woman can have. The older she gets, the more interested he is in her.

A diplomat is someone who tells you to go to hell in such a way that you look forward to the trip.

There's no trick to being a humorist when you've got the whole government working for you.---Will Rogers

If we had no faults, we should not take so much pleasure in noting those of others.---Francois VI, Duc de La Rochefoucauld

Preview the Winter 2011-12 issue. Vol. 8, No. 4

  • Readers’ stories fill this special issue, which we call “Letters from the Land.” You’ll find their stories to be as diverse as the land itself, but tied together with the common thread of personal experience.

  • Betty Hall provides a rare look at the “frost flowers” that appear magically from the roots of native plants growing in her back yard in Lexington, Kentucky.

  • Kayla Koether takes you on a journey to the steppe of Mongolia where she lived for five months with nomadic herders in this historic but threatened grassland.

  • You’ll read how Roger Maddux and Cindy Hildebrand are on a mission in the heart of the Corn Belt to save prairie remnants that made the Corn Belt possible.

  • Then there’s Linda Gurgone, who practices yoga in the savanna she and her husband, Terry, restored on the three acres where they live in Woodstock, Illinois.

  • Stan Meyer tells how the waterfowl and other wildlife are returning to the wetlands he’s restoring on his 440-acre ranch in Montana.

  • “Let’s plant trees!” urges Peter Bundy, who writes about the need to air-condition the point where three major biomes converge in northern Minnesota.

  • Alice D’Alessio, a published poet, turns to verse in reflecting on a controlled burn of a prairie on her land in southwestern Wisconsin.

  • Betty Moffett also writes about fire on the prairie as she spins a tale about the ritual burnings of an old quilt and a wedding dress. The cast of characters includes her grandchildren and her brother.

  • Bill Witt finds spiritual renewal in the prairie and other native ecosystems. An accomplished photographer and writer, he celebrates the intangible benefits through his creative photos and words in his book, Enchanted by Prairie, reviewed in this issue.

  • Dave Bartemes dreamed of retiring among the trees in the mountains of West Virginia, but he settled for a tree farm in southern Iowa. You’ll read how his children and grandchildren gave him 15 good reasons for doing so.

  • As a professor of analytical chemistry, John Walters is trained to look for changes in a “sea of data that would signal a waiting discovery.” And that’s how he came to take this memorable photo of a bashful black-eyed Susan.

  • Corn-and-soybean farmers aren’t exactly in the vanguard of the ecological restoration movement. However, Rex Gogerty bridges the gap with filter strips of native grasses and forbs that protect a creek running through his crop fields in central Iowa.

  • Editor Rollie Henkes introduces this issue, noting that pioneer settlers touched off the first revolution on the tallgrass prairie and other native lands in America. And another revolution is underway, led by the likes of the letter writers in this issue.

    ------------~ Mrs. Woods

    Betty Hall
    Kayla Koether
    Roger Maddux and Cindy Hildebrand
    Linda Gurgone
    Stan Meyer
    Peter Bundy
    Alice D’Alessio
    Betty Moffett and grandchildren
    Bill Witt
    Dave Bartemes
    "Our industry is committed to the environment. All of our lobbyists are 100% recycled congressmen."
    Bashful Suzy
    Rex Gogerty
    Rollie Henkes

    Midwest Woodlands & Prairies is published four times a year by Wood River Communications.

    © by Wood River Communications. Reproduction prohibited without written consent