Many years ago in January, when I was a young writing student, a professor took me and a few classmates to an antique shop. The challenge was to find something that captured the imagination. A triggering subject, he called it.
There may have been some priceless furnishings on site, but this ‘shop’ could be more accurately described as a large barn overflowing with curiosities, crafts and stories. Throughout the room were old dolls with limbs missing or broken eyes, bears on horseback, fishermen, bobcats, wagon wheels, farm implements, mannequins, stone tools and sculptures. It was easy to get lost.
Bill Belcher is president of the Ucross Foundation.