LIT­ER­ARY LEGACY

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How co­in­ci­den­tal that on the very day I read Jef­frey McCarthy’s ar­ti­cle The Thoreau Ap­proach (Oc­to­ber) I flipped my day-by-day cal­en­dar of mean­ing­ful quotes and en­coun­tered this one by Thoreau: “He is the best sailor who can steer within the fewest points of the wind, and ex­tract a mo­tive power out of the great­est ob­sta­cles.” My grand­fa­ther was a Maine farmer and a fan of Thoreau’s writ­ing. He was a “jack of all trades” who ap­pre­ci­ated ef­fi­ciency, econ­omy and na­ture. I read some Walden ex­cerpts at his fu­neral. He never sailed, but I be­lieve he would be proud that I do.

— Jim Ouel­lette MD, Colch­ester, CT

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