“What are you doing now? he asked. ‘Do you keep a journal?’ So I make my first entry today.” Henry David Thoreau penned these words in 1837. One of America’s great writers, and not coincidentally one of the most astute observers of nature who ever lived, Thoreau made a point of observing the physical world around him and keeping a journal in which he recorded what he saw. Thoreau thought deeply about his experiences. “Both place and time were changed,” he wrote of one of his first nights under the stars, “and I dwelt nearer to those parts of the universe and to those eras of history which had most attracted me.”
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