NEAR PHILOMATH, Ore. -- After the unexpected deaths of several close friends, Kathleen Dean Moore went looking for answers.
"I wanted to figure out how we celebrate lives that always end in death," said the Corvallis essayist, also a philosophy professor at Oregon State University.
She snowshoed the Cascades, canoed the Boundary Waters in Minnesota, went birding in Alaska and spent time with the snakes on her property near Philomath.
The result: Her 10th book, "Wild Comfort: The Solace of Nature."
The book explores the relationship between grief and the natural world. In writing the book, Moore said she learned that people can get through anything if they keep the proper perspective, and see the connections in the natural world.
"The frog song is connected to the bird's song is connected to the seed drop," she said. " Realizing this, you begin to have a sense of wonder. And wonder opens you up to gratitude. And I don't think you can be grateful and despairing at the same time."
Moore will give a free public reading Wednesday, April 28, at the Hult Center in Eugene. The 7 p.m. event is sponsored by the McKenzie River Trust.