Book Review: Kissed By a Fox

September 24, 2012 § 2 Comments


Priscilla Stuckey comes to us now with her first delicious nonfiction memoir Kissed By a Fox: And Other Stories of Friendship in Nature. I was drawn to it so intensely that I did something I have never done. I read the whole of it over one 24 hour period. You might say I steeped myself in it, and this steeping richly fed me.

It’s a personal story, and that story gains compelling depth because Stuckey offers not just her story of disaffection from nature and the long journey back into oneness with the earth. She also educates us about the historical and philosophical context of her subject: the long eons of time during which humans were one with the live world (Eden, if you will) and the eons and centuries during which we gradually separated from “that world.”

I’m impressed by the skillful way in which she moves between the two worlds, weaving a tapestry of scientific facts, philosophical and personal experience. The weaving of the two modes is artful, and utterly appropriate, for it is her purpose in this work to help us remember how to live at one with nature and thus to heal our long exile.

I tried to imagine myself wearing the scholar’s hat, then the ignorant human being’s cap, and I doubt that I could manage to integrate the two in the graceful and erudite way that Priscilla Stuckey has done.

Even her choosing the right quotations is artful, in that they are all clearly to the point in the place where they appear, and they say just enough to illuminate and forward the reader’s own thought. Kissed By a Fox is an elegant and moving work of art.

Marilyn Krysl is the author of DINNER WITH OSAMA and SWEAR THE BURNING VOW.

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§ 2 Responses to Book Review: Kissed By a Fox

  • To think that Friendship is something uniquely human is awfully clumsy and presumptuous. More accurately, its this ‘friendliness’ which is almost identical in Animals AND Humans– for the very same reasons. Much as a stray dog that has been harmed repeatedly can almost never shake loose the distrust of others (quad- and bipedal I should say) we humans too, begin with the optimistic view that cooperation and win-win relationships are possible, until we’re hurt. After all, the first ‘friends’ we make are out parents, and that relationship, generally speaking, is loving and warm ( I say this only because of the Genetic imperative for a mother to take care of her babies…this is not ‘personality’ , but DNA ). Normal functioning animals and humans are default to ‘friendly’ and have the capability for loving trusting friendships–or perhaps more aptly, ‘allies’.

  • Cannot wait to read Stuckey’s book. It sounds both humble and informative!

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