UP Reader (Volume 6)

UP Reader: Bring Upper Michigan Literature to the World (Volume 6)

Not being from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, or anywhere near there, I wasn’t sure if I’d find anything in this hefty volume to my liking. I have to report – I was dead wrong!

Through the well written stories, both true and fictional, the essays, the memoirs, the local history and the poetry, there was so much packed between the pages here that it kept me entertained for many days.

With each page I visited another place from afar. I spent time at a booth at the fair enjoying the crocheted paradise filled with aprons, dishcloths, coasters, and more. I visited Michigan Technological University – a different world in the 1980s than my childrearing years were. Marlene’s Beauty Parlor. Iroquois Island. Wally’s Superette. I tagged along with the FBI as they followed the trail of the pasty smuggling ring. I frolicked with raccoons, opossums, red foxes, and coyotes.

So many stories. So many memories. So many tales.

Which was my favorite? Oh, such a difficult task that would be to pick just one – or two – or ten.

But, of course, after being an herb lover for so many years – even having my own small herb and garden store for three years (twenty years ago – a lifetime ago it seems), you know there was one that filled my heart with even more joy. ‘Seeds Well Planted: Healing Balm from a Keweenaw Garden’ nudged its way to the top of my favorites list.

Once I read these words, I was hooked: “The parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme intermingled like a Simon & Garfunkel harmony.”

After that, I settled in to follow along as I watched Cindi Perkins battle between Control Freak Gardener and Gin-and-Tonic Gardener, keeping me entertained with every paragraph, every page.

It turned out that I was pleasantly surprised with this volume as the stories and poems treated me from cover to cover.

June 2023

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