After a near-fatal stroke and a separation, amidst a global pandemic, Rick Van Noy decided to go for a paddle. In Borne by the River, he charts the story of discovery, and healing that came from this solo canoe journey. Paddling two hundred miles on the Delaware River to his boyhood home just upriver from Trenton, New Jersey, Van Noy contemplates his fate and life, as well as the simple joy of sitting in a small boat floating down a large river with his dog, Sully.
Deftly combining memoir, natural and local history, and engaging reportage of his encounters with other paddlers and river enthusiasts, including members of the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania, Van Noy reveals deep and shifting layers of environmental, historical, cultural, and personal significance of the Delaware.
Borne by the River reckons with the way that rivers braid into one's own life—thrilling rapids, eddying pauses, and life-changing rifts and falls. Van Noy rediscovers and shares how river journeys can scatter anxieties, wash away regrets, and recreate the spirit in its free-flowing currents.