Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Going green

You show up in Spring Green, Wisconsin and the entire town comes out for the party. They arrange a perfect sunset followed by a beautiful evening for sitting outside. They give you dinner. And free beer. (And then they come around with a pitcher of More Free Beer.) They time a shooting star just perfectly. 

(You'll find out later that none of this has anything to do with you, that it's just fluky good timing, but it doesn't matter. You're already smitten by the friendliest, most adorable, place on Earth.)

My reading at Arcadia Books in Spring Green was just one of many highlights of a recent roadtrip through the US midwest. Arcadia is a comfy hardwood-floored, giant-windowed, high-ceilinged bookstore and it was a pleasure to read there in the company of all the people I know in Wisconsin. (Which, until 24 hours earlier, was zero.)

Earlier that day, we visited the Circus World Museum in nearby Baraboo (don't you have to go there, just for the name alone?) as research for My Giant Project. The next day we got an insider tour of Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin, which now has me thinking about the intersection of poetry and architecture. So, even though I don't really write on the road, it was a productive and inspiring holiday. (Also Wisconsin is unrelentingly gorgeous. Go there in the fall, I recommend it.)

So here's to the good people of Spring Green and Madison. (And their wonderful, wonderful beer.)