Paperback. Singing Horse Press (2013).
Following the trail he set out on in From the Arapaho Songbook, the poems in Andrew Schelling’s A Possible Bag takes us further into the recesses of the Southern Rocky Mountain bioregion, tracking the remnants of the Arapaho language that was once the native tongue of that terrain.
“Translator, scholar, poet Andrew Schelling works from linguistic roots both East (Sanskrit) and West (Arapaho) to imagine how we might relate to earth differently since we can now see human inhabitation as a limited engagement. According to the glossary, a “possible bag” is a sack for holding anything. These poems hold a miscellany of prized items: vocabularies, vistas, verses, dreams, love tokens, bones, beadwork, weathers, flora, fauna, landmarks, pottery, books, rants, maps, dates, medicines, jerked meat and letters. The poet allows himself to be moved by each encounter and does not place his emotion outside the range of this lapidary writing. Flashes of feeling illuminate the lines connecting facts of geography, history, botany and 21st century social life. Here is an engaged mindfulness both personal and planetary.” —Kit Robinson
About the Author
Andrew Schelling lives in the Southern Rocky Mountains, dividing his time between Boulder, Colorado, and a former mining camp in the Indian Peaks. He has worked on land use in the American West, ecology, and wolf reintroduction. Recent books include A Possible Bag (Singing Horse Press, 2013), From the Arapaho Songbook (La Alameda Press, 2011), Old Tale Road (poetry; Empty Bowl Press, 2008) and Wild Form, Savage Grammar: Poetry, Ecology, Asia (La Alameda Press, 2003). For thirty years he has studied Sanskrit and Indian raga, and published seven books of translation from India's early poets, most recently a revised edition of Dropping the Bow: Poems of Ancient India (White Pine Press, 2008). He teaches at Naropa University's Jack Kerouac School and at Deer Park Institute in India's bird-rich Himalayan foothills.