Part memoir, part natural history, part mindfulness guide, this charming love letter to the natural world explores the many ways animals can enrich our lives
To be alienated from animals is to live a life that is not quite whole, contends nature writer Tai Moses. Urban and suburban residents share their environment with many types of wildlife: squirrels, birds, spiders, and increasingly lizards, deer, and coyote. Many of us crave more contact with wild creatures, and recognize the small and large ways animals enrich our lives, yet don’t notice the animals already around us.
Zooburbia reveals the reverence that can be felt in the presence of animals and shows how that reverence connects us to a deeper, better part of ourselves. A lively blend of memoir, natural history, and mindfulness practices, Zooburbia makes the case for being mindful and compassionate stewards—and students—of the wildlife with whom we coexist. With lessons on industriousness, perseverance, presence, exuberance, gratitude, aging, how to let go, and much more, Tai's vignettes share the happy fact that none of us is alone and separate, and that our teachers are right in front of us. We need only go outdoors with our eyes and ears open to find a rapport with the animal kingdom. Zooburbia is a magnifying lens turned to our everyday environment, reminding us that we, as individuals and as a species, are not alone.
Illustrated by Dave Buchen with original black and white wildlife linocuts.
About the Author
Tai Moses has been a journalist and editor for many years. She has also worked as a veterinary assistant, a barista, a hotel maid, and a wildlands firefighter. Formerly a senior editor at AlterNet.org, her writing has been widely published in the independent press. Tai lives in Santa Cruz, CA, with her husband, her dog Arrow, and a number of cats.
“Moses captures ‘the human desire to form an emotional bond with other creatures’ and its nuanced shades of both glory and misery.” —Publishers Weekly
“Moses writes in an engaging style, applying self-deprecating humor, righteous anger, or even Zen philosophy as the material requires. She describes nature and animals beautifully and simply. This is the memoir of a writer who has put real thought into how she relates to the natural world, and readers will find those thoughts worth considering.” —Jeff Fleischer, Foreword
“Dog and horse, deer and mole: these are the flesh-and-blood spirits who attend Moses’ writing, metamorphosing her first-person essays into a radiant collective consciousness. We live in a zoo without cages. Moses’ book is a keeper.” —Joanna Brichetto, BookPage