21 May 2012, Hoarfrost River, northeast tip of Great Slave Lake, Northwest Territories, Canada.

Hello!  I am Dave Olesen.  As we come down the home stretch to marking our first 25 years at the Hoarfrost River, I have decided to attempt a periodic posting of comments and insights, musings and digressions, inspired by my daily life and work in this remote part of northern North America.  I will write candidly about my life and times — if too candidly at times, or too bluntly, bear with me (or go away — always an option.)

A note to aviation enthusiasts who may have stumbled here because of the title of the blog, i.e. bushedpilot.  A play on words, not a promise that this will be an aviation-centered blog.  Yes, I fly bushplanes for a living.  Yes, it is a great way to make a living here — most days.  Yes, I have opinions about airplanes and engines and floats and skis… and No, airplanes and aviation are not the focus of my writing or my thinking or my daily living.

If pressed to sum up what I am after here, I would offer these lines from an essay by the late John Haines, an Alaskan whose poetry and prose have inspired me for nearly four decades:

“From time to time, when the air has cleared around me, and I have cleared a space in my own head, I have been able to look on my own writing as one individual’s attempt to recover something of that native ground, the original and hardly comprehended thing under our feet:  the actual historical ground, compounded of rock and slime, of animal stench and human use.    

“And rightly comprehended, the theme of the writing would be constant:  a sustained effort to demolish the cliché; to understand, and then to say, as well as we can, what we feel to be true.” 

— John Haines, from the introduction to Living Off the Country, Essays on Poetry and Place,  Univ. of Michigan Press, 1981.

Further notes and links —

Comments. I have for various reasons become uncomfortable with the game of “Comments” and “Replies,” to and fro, as it seems to play out online.  I am happy to receive messages via email:

dave at hoarfrostriver dot ca

or via PO Box 607 Yellowknife NT X1A 2N5,

and I will try to answer all correspondence.

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