This review essay offers an enthusiastically positive review of Branka Arsić's Bird Relics: Grief and Vitalism in Thoreau (2016). Arsić gives us a Thoreau who is a pondside Pythagoras, learned and disciplined, with roots deep in Greek and Ionian and Persian and Hindu thought. Her Thoreau is a prophet with a freshly thought‐out message about how perpetual mourning drives the perpetual renewal of life, about the importance of disindividualizing, and about the persistence of life at its most basic and elemental level. Arsić shows how, once we learn to see and hear and walk and sit without filters, without metaphors, and without other preconceived containers for pure experience, we can come to see, with Thoreau, that at the most important level, there is no death.

You do not currently have access to this content.