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Fox and I by Catherine Raven

This is a searingly beautiful account of Catherine Raven’s journey from alienation to healing through the ministrations of an unusual wild fox.  Raven is a survivor, a hardy soul from a dysfunctional family, highly intelligent, acutely sensitive, and brutally honest.  Trained as a biologist, she rambles through an eclectic sampling of natural history and her own observations while attaching them to carefully chosen if idiosyncratic selections from literature: Mary Shelley, Herman Melville, Lafcadio Hearn, and, especially, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, whose Little Prince she reads aloud to the fox (!).  Why, she asks, is mankind so detached from the natural world?  Why do we push it away, relegating it to “scientific scrutiny” (and too often wanton destruction) instead of viewing and nurturing it with the totality of our humanity?  A question ever more relevant as we stand on the brink of losing so much of this world…  Raven’s helplessness in the face of a wildfire from which she cannot save Fox seems emblematic of our present struggles.  Her ability to move past his death and pull together the fragmented strands of her life should give us hope and, perhaps, suggest a way forward.













The Best of Sandy and Rocky

  • 035 King of the Universe
    Sandy was a year old when he came to us in 2013 as a scrawny stray with one misshapen eyelid. A few months of hearty eating transformed him into a sandy-haired beauty, extraordinarily gentle and extremely fond of cuddling and schmoozing. About that time we adopted three-month-old Rocky, mischief-maker and comedian-in-chief. Where Sandy never saw a lap he didn’t like, Rocky never passed up a box or a bag if he could possibly get in it. When, in 2015, our permanent move to Mill Brook House enabled the cats to go outside, Sandy proved himself a fearsome hunter while Rocky fell in love with wild turkeys and domestic chickens. Sadly, at the end of his first outdoor summer, Sandy disappeared. Days of calling, searching and alerting neighbors turned up nothing. Devastated at first, Rocky eventually recovered his moxie, and he continues to romance the chickens across the street, play pirates in the claw foot tub, and fall asleep on the hand-hewn beams in the attic. This album commemorates our “cat years.”

Charlemont at 250

  • 027 Balloon Rides
    This year marks Charlemont's 250th Anniversary (incorporated 1765). See photographs here and read more at: For permission to reproduce any of these photographs, please contact Steven Sternbach:

Shelburne Falls' Bridge of Flowers

  • C014
    The Shelburne Falls trolley bridge, connecting the villages of Buckland and Shelburne, was built in 1908 to carry freight and passengers on a 7.5 mile line to Colrain. With the advent of the automobile, however, trucks began hauling freight, and in 1927 the company that built the bridge went bankrupt. Turning the abandoned bridge into a flower garden was the brainchild of Antoinette and Walter Burnham, who, with the Shelburne Falls Women’s Club, raised $1000 for loam, fertilizer and plants, and made this unique, historic landmark a reality in 1929. Then, as now, all the labor to start the garden and keep it going was donated. This album is a month by month chronicle of the ever-changing spectacle the bridge presents to tourists and residents every year from April to September.

Western Mass.

  • 018 Charlemont Fairgrounds Grandstand
    Steve can be reached at


  • MassMoCA, Exterior
    The photographs in this album record exhibits at MassMoCA in North Adams, MA, on January 1, 2011. All of these photographs are copyrighted by Steven Sternbach; for permission to reproduce them, contact the photographer at
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