Here we are in a new year, stepping into a new era. We’re eager to reconnect with people we love and sink our feet into places dear to us.
The cusp of change offers a fleeting lucidity. As the shape and texture of what we’ve weathered come into focus, so do the signs of resilience and growth. In the last year, hundreds of people have joined us here, as readers of these Stories From the Garden, and also as supporters of The Merwin Conservancy’s commitment to regeneration of language, thought, land and community. And as our larger community expands and evolves, so too does our community of passionate leaders and advisors. Matthew Carlos Schwartz, our Board President and son of W.S. Merwin and Paula Merwin, is stepping down after a decade of thoughtful and graceful leadership. Matt brought his parents’ vision to fruition in forming The Merwin Conservancy ten years ago; twice steered it through seasons of profound grief, when we lost Paula in 2017 and William two years later; and led the Conservancy to this very moment, when it is poised to flourish. As Matt steps into a new board role as President Emeritus and Merwin Family representative, longtime board members step into new roles, and four new directors join us, deepening our shared commitment through new ideas and perspectives.
Change is upon us all, and in many ways it always is. The Merwin Conservancy will continue to learn, grow and evolve. The new projects we’re to launch in the months and years ahead will perpetually engage the possibilities of our times with rigor and poetry.
And as recent tumult has reminded us—poetry is, as it ever was, vital.