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Eastern Washington

Cover of Dove Creek
Fall 2012

Dove Creek

9850062
Paula Marie Coomer
Booktrope, 2010

While more known for her short stories, Paula Coomer takes the novel form to tell the story of Patricia Morrison, the daughter of Kentucky hill folk who leaves her hardscrabble life in Appalachia to discover a new existence in the West. After an unpleasant divorce, she lands on the Nez Perce Indian reservation to work as a nurse. The book, told in the main character’s voice, incorporates an exploration of … » More …

Power lines over a field on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation
Summer 2012

Coyote

Pronunciation: kī–ō’–tē, chiefly Western kī’–ōt

After years away,
I met you again on the tongue
of an old friend from home. Kī’–ōt.

Trotting through sagebrush. Wild
by any name. I’d moved to a green isle city
that pronounced you kī–ō’–tē

and abandoned you by the side of the road.
I’d forgotten your silver, slope-shouldered form
and gaze.

You’re not a citizen of language or memory,
but I am. Changing your name
was a betrayal of home

born of living among outsiders,
born of looking back through outsiders’ eyes
at interchangeable houses landscaped

with wishing … » More …

Summer 2011

Murder at Foxbluff Lake

freels

Jesse E. Freels ’99
Gray Dog Press, 2010

Cougar fans of all ages will enjoy reading Jesse E. Freels’s first book, Murder at Foxbluff Lake, a Coug Hawkins mystery. The novel tells the story of Coug, the teenage son of a WSU football legend, who goes on a camping trip with two of his buddies only to find a body and wind up entangled in an illegal drug deal.

The book is set in north- central Washington … » More …

Winter 2003

Pacific Northwest sagebrush steppe

Though it is the most widespread of plant ecosystems in eastern Washington, covering 24,000 square miles, the sagebrush-steppe is probably the least understood, and therefore the least appreciated, especially among gardeners. By nature, gardeners like to make things grow, and by the looks of things, not much grows in that desert-like region, except sagebrush. But the sagebrush-steppe region is home to some of most adaptive and intriguing plants on earth, and gardeners can learn much here to apply to eco-friendly rock gardens and xeriscapes.

The region is most strongly defined by its dryness. Lying entirely east of the Cascade Mountains, it receives only eight to12 … » More …

Spring 2007

Just like it was yesterday

“We were living a good life,” said Albert Redstarr Andrews in a meditation concluding the second Plateau Conference, “and we were disturbed.” What might be taken as gracious understatement also resonated with profound loss.

In spite of a generally liberal sensibility and Native great-grandmother, I confess there have been times upon hearing Native Americans speak of the injustices of manifest destiny and conquest, I’ve wondered when they will finally accept, no matter the past injustice, that this is simply the way things are. Having attended the conference in October, however, I find I am still capable of learning.

The focus of this year’s conference was … » More …

Winter 2001

SR 26 Revealed

“The task is not so much to see what no one yet has seen, but to think what nobody yet has thought about that which everybody sees.” —Arthur Schopenhauer

THERE ARE LANDSCAPES that move us and landscapes through which we simply move.

State Route 26 has always been considered one of the latter: a notoriously dull 133 miles between Vantage and Colfax that has for decades been the main transportation link between the West Side and Washington State University.

It’s the asphalt welcome mat for more than 10,000 WSU students who travel this highway between their homes in Western Washington and WSU, along with thousands … » More …

Winter 2005

Windfalls

To be a mother or an artist? Or both?

Anyone interested in women’s quest stories that explore these central questions will find Jean Hegland’s second novel, Windfalls, to be essential reading. Readers who know the Palouse will enjoy her vivid descriptions of Spokane and eastern Washington. Indeed the entire book seems to cast a golden-red glow on the lives of its struggling main characters, Cerise and Anna, like the “last ruddy light. . . , burnishing the fields and illuminating the roses, deepening the crimson” in a Palouse sunset.

Hegland (B.A. ’79) earns a solid place for Windfalls in the tradition of women’s quest novels … » More …