“Whether she’s writing about the staccato of a hairy woodpecker echoing through the woods, tapping sweet sap from a cluster of maples during a spring sugaring ritual or mourning the loss of her ox, Tolstoy, Joan Donaldson’s sensuous prose shimmers and surprises. Her collection of essays, Wedded to the Land, peels back the skin of her blueberry farm with the precision and eloquence of a Wendell Berry, Edward Abbey, and other agrarian essayists who make us pine for the lost heart of the country.” —George Getschow, writer-in-residence, The Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism, former editor for the Wall Street Journal John thought he was building a garage when he erected a timber-frame building only a stone’s throw from the house we built on the back of our farm. While washing the dishes, I mulled over how pleasant it would be to look out our kitchen window and watch goats lounge in a paddock. If goats lived in the new shed, the walk wouldn’t be far when milking in the winter or during kidding season. Once outside, I scanned the sixteen-by-twenty-foot framework. “You know, a couple of goats would fit nicely in here. There’s room for two stalls.” John’s hammer paused. I continued. “The aspens and honeysuckle on the north would shelter an outdoor pen.” I tied on a nail apron and picked up a hammer.