For more than a decade, Margie Patlak spent summers and falls on the Schoodic peninsula in Down East Maine. Each year when she returned to Philadelphia’s cityscape, what she missed most were those astonishing Maine moments of natural beauty: fog lumbering down the bay at dawn, erasing all boundaries and imparting a sense of the unknown; morning dew anointing each pine needle and flower petal with sparkling pendants of water; a solitary loon swimming in the bay trailed by its glistening wake.
These surprising encounters in nature disrupted her normal frame of reference, restoring a childlike sense of wonder about the world around her. Wanting to capture these fleeting but meaningful times, Margie started carrying her camera with her wherever she went in Maine and snapped away.
Wild and Wondrous: Nature's Artistry on the Coast of Maine is the end result of her attempt to encapsulate the ephemeral, to imprint on paper impressions of something much more profound. The ten chapters in this book focus on what makes Maine particularly unique, including its unusual light, many islands, omnipresent rocks, frequent fog, startling wildlife, vast forests, and striking intersections and tides.
Nature is the ultimate artist. Margie is merely a scribe trying to record her beauty and share her wonders. As Rachel Carson once asked her readers to do, she asks of you: “Drink in the beauty, and think and wonder at the meaning of what you see.”