“Ceremonial time” occurs when past, present, and future can be perceived simultaneously. Experienced only rarely, usually during ritual dance, this escape from linear time is the vehicle for John Mitchell’s extraordinary writing. In this, his most magical book, he traces the life of a single square mile in New England, from the last ice age through years of human history, including bear shamans, colonists, witches, local farmers, and encroaching industrial “parks.”
About the Author
John Hanson Mitchell's work is focused on a square mile tract of land known as Scratch Flat, located about thirty-five miles north-west of Boston. Mitchell has used this anomalous landscape of rolling hills, farms, forests and encroaching suburbs to explore his continuing interest in natural and human history and the whole question of place in human cultures, both native and European. Best known of this series of books is the first, Ceremonial Time: Fifteen Thousand Years on One Square Mile, a New York Times Editors' Choice. The latest book in the group is An Eden of Sorts: The Natural History of My Feral Garden. All of these books have been collected together in a series known as The Scratch Flat Chronicles.