I am a personal essayist and a student of wild nature, a human animal in conversation with the more than human world.
I am a nature connection facilitator and ecopsychology student, an explorer in the science and mystery of exterior and interior landscapes.
Now available from Homebound Publications…
My second book melds my backgrounds in psychology and ecology to examine relationships with landscapes, animals, and human animals, and the myriad environmental, physiological, and cultural factors that inform those relationships. In lyric or more traditional personal essays, linear narratives or meandering musings, I follow threads of self-awareness, consciousness, solitude vs. escapism, ecophysiology, mental health, and the difficulties and rewards of connecting with all those outside our own skins. Order now from Homebound Publications —every purchase plants a tree! Also available from Wilderness Awareness School, Bookshop.org, Powell’s, or support your local bookstore.
Praise for Wolf Tree
“Wolf Tree is a richly textured mosaic that feels, as in Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, like everything belongs despite the many distinctnesses. Through a striking, openly vulnerable, and deeply personal examination of many kinds of relationships runs a tension between solitude and community. As she travels between the unpredictable, often fraught company of other people and the balm of wilderness, Durham wonders, Where, and how, might I belong? In these pages, we are able to live those questions and their accompanying aches and pleasures. Like the sea glass Durham ponders, this book is a true gift. It has over many years been stirred and scratched, scoured and smoothed into a rare and beautiful thing glimmering with so much life.”
—Derek Sheffield, Poetry Editor of Terrain.org and author of Not for Luck
“Wolf Tree is magic; not in the manner of the wide-eyed crystal-kisser, but vibrant and gritty, fecund and restrained, and layered with a forest floor of metaphor and experience revealed from a life lived engulfed in it. Durham’s magnificent, unruly world of birds and bugs and plants and people is the one I prefer to inhabit too. She reminds us we humans are noisy animals but then, time and again, reveals the truths we may discover if we approach the world, like so many of our relatives do, in silence. This is a holy book.”
-Chris LaTray, award-winning author of One-Sentence Journal
“Wow. That is the word I spoke aloud over and over while reading Wolf Tree. Heather Durham’s new book is nine kinds of beautiful. Fearless, authentic, raw, glistening, intense, wondering, wandering, untethered, highly original. In Durham’s experiences we are called to know our own authentic selves through wild connection, and to bring our most meaningful presence to the earth-community. Wolf Tree is nothing short of stunning.”
—Lyanda Lynn Haupt, author of Rooted: Life at the Crossroads of Science, Nature, and Spirit
My first book, published in 2019 by Wandering Aengus Press, is an exploration of wandering in wild nature. In these deeply personal and intellectually curious essays, I explore wild America weaving the perspectives of trained ecologist, inquisitive philosopher, and restless nomad, probing intricacies of the natural world as profoundly as I do myself. Part scientifically-informed nature writing, part soul-searching memoir, Going Feral is the story of a human animal learning to belong to the earth.
Purchase from Wilderness Awareness School, Powell’s Books, Bookshop.org, or support your local bookstore.
Praise for Going Feral
“As one way to be the restoration architects of Eden, we can kindle a saving kinship with earth through the kind of sensory immersion, and resulting engine of discovery, described evocatively by Heather Durham’s Going Feral. To go into the wild like this requires a kind of rich hurt that teaches viscerally, and Durham takes the reader through accounts of deep engagement that pay dividends in awareness, curiosity, and wisdom. She’s not afraid to be afraid, not timid about the threshold to true encounter, and we are lucky for that. Read this book as a field guide to building your own agenda for going feral for moments of insight, and a life of change.”
—Kim Stafford, Former Oregon Poet Laureate and author of Wild Honey, Tough Salt
“These essays range far, challenge comfort, reveal grace, and often end on landing-points of shocking rightness, in language as lush and right as that world it conveys. A reader could be stirred up here, could be reminded to wander a little (or a lot), could be inspired to shut up and hunker down and let the awkward perfection of the wild reveal itself. Something like hope could appear. Something like spirit.”
-David Oates, author of The Mountains of Paris: How Awe and Wonder Rewrote My Life