For a small town, Palmer sure has a lot of good literature. The newest we can claim is Eberhart’s keenly-observed memoir-in-essays, much of it centered on her 30 years living in and living with the unique history of an old Matanuska Colony house. Digging into the garden or uncovering hidden stairs become opportunities to examine bigger questions of nature, history, and how we make our home in the world. – Ruth
As a young adult, Katie Eberhart moved to Cabin 135, a house on a knoll in remote Alaska. Over the next decade, growing up and growing into her home, she found herself thinking through her ever-changing ideas about aging and place, a lot of which were wrapped up closely in her experience of living in the house itself. Cabin 135 provided shelter and security, and it also offered lessons on economic disruptions and how ideas of normalcy change. In these pages, we share Eberhart’s experience of digging into the past—figuratively and, in her garden, at an archaeology site, and in a national park, literally. Every layer peeled back, we find, reveals another story, another way of thinking about nature and the past—our own and that of others. In greenhouse and garden, yard, forest, and more distant places—a beach in southeast Alaska, the Arctic coast, Swiss Alps, Iceland, and even Biosphere-2 in Arizona—Eberhart engages with the world around her, and, through it, reflects on her own experiences and journey through life. Offering a journey of wonder and curiosity, through the author’s mind, a house’s structure, and other places, Cabin 135 is a deft combination of memoir and nature writing, rich with thought and full of appreciation for—and profound concerns about—the world and our place in it.
About the Author
Katie Eberhart writes with a keen curiosity about rootedness, how a lived in place reveals its stories, and how stories from past generations merge with our own. Katie has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and degrees in economics, geography, and agricultural economics. Her chapbook Unbound: Alaska Poems was published in 2013.