People have been retreating to the woods for quiet, meditation, and inspiration for centuries, and recent research finds that time spent in the forest doesn’t just feel good but is, in fact, good for you. Inspired by the Japanese concept of shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing, poet Hannah Fries invites readers to bask in the company of trees, whether in a city park or a rural nature preserve.
Fries combines her own reflections and guided mindfulness exercises with a curated selection of inspirational writing from poets, naturalists, artists, scientists, and thinkers throughout the centuries and across cultures, including Japanese haiku masters, nineteenth-century European Romantics, American Transcendentalists, and contemporary environmentalists. Accompanied by beautiful forest photography, Forest Bathing Retreat is a distinctive gift that invites frequent revisiting for fresh insights and inspiration.
About the Author
Hannah Fries is an award-winning poet, writer, and editor whose work has been featured in numerous publications including Orion, American Poetry Review, Massachusetts Review, and Alaska Quarterly Review. Her first book of poetry, Little Terrarium, was published in 2016 by Hedgerow Books. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, and she was awarded a scholarship from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. A native of New Hampshire, Fries is a graduate of Dartmouth College and holds an MFA in poetry from Warren Wilson College. She lives in the woods of western Massachusetts.
Robin Wall Kimmerer is the State University of New York Distinguished Teaching Professor at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse. She is founding director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment. Her books include Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses and Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants.
“I am blessed to have spent a life in the woods, but if the woods are out of reach, you can saunter through the pages here. . .. Fries invites a deeper connection to the natural world.” — Robin Wall Kimmerer, author of Braiding Sweetgrass, from the foreword
“I love this book. The thoughtful compilation of poems, photos, stories, is a beautiful reminder that our forests have contributed so much to our well-being and if we cherish them we will always reap the benefits.” — Laura Belleville, vice president of Conservation and Trail Management Programs at Appalachian Trail Conservancy
“A beautiful invitation into direct experience of the complexity and intelligence of forests.” — David George Haskell, author of The Songs of Trees and The Forest Unseen
“What a beautiful book! As relaxing and restorative as a walk in the woods itself." — Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Love and Real Happiness
“Accept the gifts of this glorious book — a gentle path through the healing peace of the forest. In the shade of the great trees, find the strength and wisdom to go forward in a reeling world.” — Kathleen Dean Moore, author of Great Tide Rising