Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing

Faculty Member Barbara Hurd Writes About “The Mind in Winter” This Week on the Stonecoast Faculty Blog

photo by Helen Peppe

By Barbara Hurd

Icicles at the Stone HouseLet’s agree that this enterprise we writers are engaged in can be a cheerless one and that all of us have faced the blank page, the cold rejection, a mind too frozen to start.

In the face of such bleakness, we each, I suppose, need our own version of a hot toddy. Here’s one of mine: Once, on expedition with the Department of Natural Resources, I hiked for miles through snow-crusted woods and helped pull bear cubs out of their den. As the official folks tested the mother they’d tranquilized, I nestled the infants inside my jacket to keep them warm. Whimpering, they tried to scramble up my chest, poke their heads out the neck-hole of my jacket. I remember their wet-dog smell, sharp claws, their blue eyes, widened, perhaps, by having been hauled above ground weeks before they were ready.

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