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The Canyon Wren is the continuation and beautiful punchline of the full tale of Martín Prechtel’s trilogy, The Story of My Horses, and picks up right where The Wild Rose leaves off. This third book in the trilogy brings the story far away from all those troubled times, ins and outs, and hardships and betrayals involved in the author’s effort to gather up those old style Indian Ponies of his youth, and heads us back out into the wild land and the beauty of ranchito New Mexico, where as an integral part of the lives of his new family, their family herd of rare Spanish/Native New Mexico horses play out a series of unexpected peculiarities and surprising horse antics that push the envelope of what mainstream culture has come to assume defines horses and the people that have them. If the first book, The Mare and the Mouse, is like finding a closed treasure chest, and the second book, The Wild Rose, is the retrieval of the lost keys to that chest, then The Canyon Wren is the treasure itself. Everyone wants life to be simple, but a simple life cannot be lived in a simple way: it takes a lot of simple skills. To see the humor and beauty in the world is one of those skills.
About the Author
A leading thinker, writer, and teacher in the search for the Indigenous Soul, Martín Prechtel is a dedicated student of eloquence, history, language, and an ongoing fresh approach. In his native New Mexico Martín teaches at his international school Bolad's Kitchen: a hands-on historical and spiritual school of language, music, ritual, farming, smithing, architecture, clothing, tools, story, and humor to help people from many lands and backgrounds to remember and retain the majesty of their diverse origins while cultivating the flowering of integral culture to grow a time of hope beyond our own.
"Martin Prechtel’s book is beautifully written and wise…he offers stories that are precious and life-sustaining. Read carefully, and listen deeply." —Mary Oliver
"[Martín is] a short kind of pony that gallops through the fields of human possibility with flowers dropping out of his mouth..." —Robert Bly
"It's a precious thing, this book. I've never known another like it. It's a great encyclopedia of beauty... Like some poems of Neruda's, it is a treasure house of language, in service to life." —Robert Bly (author of Iron John, Morning Poems, and 42 other books of prose and poetry)
“Martin Prechtel’s genius takes many forms: painting, music, a continuously evolving learning community, and thank God, books like this one. I get so excited reading it, I cannot stay in one place. I sit reading on my porch…then back to my living room to make a fire and watch Martin’s gorgeously alive prose burn inside me. His ideas and language are so enlivening my impulse is to quote great sections of it. I’ll just touch on a few of his brilliant insights around how animals help us to grieve, and to make our way out of grief into the beauty of praising. As he says, animals help us grieve our loss of naturalness. And we have mostly forgotten ‘the very old worldwide tribal custom of having a “grief relative” from the wild living together with us in our houses.’ Caring for animals is a sacred responsibility. To truly grieve and to weep deeply is something the animals really do help us with. And O they help us praise too, to accomplish that most marvelous art of turning the grief into praising. Martin tells us, ‘Let the world jump up and live again,’ and he makes that happen with his delicious sentences. Read this necessary, very beautiful book, and then read it again.” —Coleman Barks, author of Rumi: Soul Fury
"This wonderful book, The Smell of Rain on Dust, not only addresses this culture’s lack of grief but it discusses in poignant ways how our inability to grieve has created many of our culture’s delirious, fast paced, toxic, constant state of emergency symptoms where depression, addiction and mediocrity reign. As a mother, daughter, teacher, and farmer I found this book to stir up a deep prayer, that as a people we might one day through being with the depths of our grief find so much love and deliciousness in being alive that we praise this life so genuinely nothing is left unloved." —Melanie MacKinnon, teacher, farmer/owner ‘Frog Belly Farms’
"I love Martín’s book. It was amazing reading it aloud to the Ocean. At one point I moved up the coast assuming the listening birds, seals and whales would stay, but they moved with me. The waves listened and the wind. Read this magical book as it takes you into the courtyard of the heart." —M. Bacon, International Award winning documentary films, director, producer
"Once again, Martin Prechtel is up to his old tricks… 'Making medicine out of poison.' Taking grief, pain, strife and other elements of a society in distress and concocting a potion that actually heals those who have ears to listen. The Smell of Rain on Dust does exactly that. In a world that needs to grieve its wrongdoings but has lost its ability or forgotten its ancient wisdom, Mr. Prechtel has been selected as a spokesman to reunite modern man with ancient wisdom. Not an enviable position!" —H. Bruce Coslor, Vietnam Vet, Nebraska Cattle Rancher, Songwriter, Musician and Grandfather
“Prechtel[’s] storytelling is intricately woven, densely layered and beautiful.” —Carolyn Burdet (Bath Chronicle, UK)