How to live in rural Maine? How--in the 1980s, when descendants of Maine's settlers wonder about our coming out of the Rust Belt in search of work, in search of a life? They were not bitter about our coming here, where jobs were already scarce--they were incredulous.
Why did we come? Sometimes I answered, "God." God brought us, the formerly middle-class inept, to live among these most hardy and canny of make-do people. God brought us to experience life in Maine, where my spouse sometimes worked turning and trimming four thousand boards a night, waking to drive one hundred miles round-trip to finish our undergraduate educations with the aid of loans and grants. So I studied the place where we came to live. And I forgot where we came from. Rural Maine was ragged, rugged, hardscrabble, and wild--but full of the most visible, vital, natural creation. I've tried to express that aspect of Maine life in The Green and Blue House. And there is the metaphor, also.