This fine press edition of The West Pole was published by the Minnesota Center for Book Arts as the seventh annually commissioned series celebrating winter in the Upper Midwest. The book was designed and printed in an edition of 200 copies by Inge Bruggeman with the assistance of Jennifer Crosby, Tamara Fox and Melissa Stephens. The text is 12 point Goudy Old Style from M & H Type Foundry, of which, 160 standard copies were printed on Frankfurt paper and 40 deluxe copies were printed on handmade paper by Bridget O'Malley. The edition was bound by Campbell-Logan Bindery using handmade walnut stained cover papers by O'Malley. This copy, number 66, is signed by the author.
Selection from "SNOW"
It snowed this year on Halloween. By the next morning there was 13 inches on the ground. By that afternoon 28 had fallen.
When I pushed open the front door. Banging it several times with my weight before it would open. I knew the sweet smell of broken fir limbs. There was silence except for a high whine in trees. The birds sat on the fence to be fed. They remembered last winter. But I didn't have bird seed.
Snow drifts in the yard were higher than the 28 inches that fell. I couldn't even wade through them. The snow was packed to the windows along the front of my house. The bushes opened to the sky. I shoveled one layer from the walk at a time.
There was news of cars and buses and snowplows stuck. It was Armistice Day, 1940. The last snow anyone could remember like it.
My yard had been full of leaves before the snow. I had raked some of them and put the sacks in the back of my new station wagon. I raked the others in a makeshift pile and drove to the Compost on Pierce Butler Route the afternoon it started to snow. But the Compost was closed on Thursdays so the leaves stayed in the back of my car in the garage.
You know sometimes you're caught off guard. Especially if you're from somewhere where there isn't much snow and they call you from Oklahoma laughing. Though some are worried. Your aunt who doesn't think you should have gone to Minnesota anyway. Though it's the best job you ever had. And you say you're all right. Though a depression comes with it. You remember the time in Iowa when you were there for a year and snow fell and the cold held on and you watched the birds shivering in the bush outside your window and you suddenly found yourself crying because of the harshness of the world. And how does anyone ever survive anyway except by an almighty hand?
From The West Pole (1994). Used with permission of the author.
Back WOMEN OF SPIRIT Next
Table of Contents
Current and Upcoming Exhibits | Main Gallery Exhibits | Side Gallery Exhibits
Guestbook and Comments | Return to Exhibits Page
Return to Special Collections Home Page