Thoreau and the Language of Trees

Friday, April 28, 2017
Campus Center Room 103/104

Arbor Day Lecture by Richard Higgins

Friday April 28, 12:00 noon - Campus Center Room 103/104 - lunch provided for the first 30 people

Trees were central to Henry David Thoreau’s creativity as a writer, his work as a naturalist, his thought, and his inner life. He once wrote that the poet loves the pine tree as his own “shadow in the air.” It is perhaps no exaggeration to say that Thoreau spoke and understood the language of trees. In this illustrated talk, Richard Higgins explores Thoreau’s deep connections to trees. Pairing Thoreau's words with his own black-and-white photographs, Higgins looks at Thoreau’s keen perception of trees, the poetry he saw in them, and how they fed his soul. The talk demonstrates that trees were a thread connecting all parts of Thoreau’s being—heart, mind, and spirit.
Followed by a booksigning.

Richard Higgins is a writer and editor in Concord, Massachusetts. His most recent book, Thoreau and the Language of Trees, will be published in April by the University of California Press. A former longtime staff writer for the Boston Globe, Higgins’s writing has appeared in the New York Times, Atlantic Monthly, Christian Century, and Smithsonian.

A Smith College Tree Committee Event.