Pancake Hollow Primer

A Hudson Valley Story

By Laurence Carr

Subjects: Literature, New York/regional, Spirituality, Fiction
Imprint: Distribution Partners
Paperback : 9781930337596, 180 pages, May 2011

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Table of contents

A Brief History

The Old Trunk
Passing Through: a partial list
Deed The First
Deed The Second
Funtz’s Last Walk
“And All The Contents Within”: a partial list
Househould Tales Part 1

The Possessed
Taking Stock
One Day Only
Diary Part 1

Wood and Water
Behind the Barn
Her Falling Time
The Road Long Traveled
When to Stop Filling the Feeder
tall flowering stalks by the barn
The Yard Sale
Goddess of the Vine
Vegetable Recipe
November Night Songs
Neighbor Ladies
Winter North Wind
Household Tales Part 2

The Call
The Knock
Coming In Second
Cat’s Paws
Diary Part 2

Landscape With Barn
Past Perfect
Jimmy’s Lament
Nest Parts 1 and 2
Household Gods

Household Tales Part 3

The Hill

An insightful and often humorous tale of rural life and how an old house and its land can bring a broken person back to wellness.


Winnerof the 2012 Next Generation Indie Book Award in the First Novel Category (under 8,000 words)

Pancake Hollow Primer is the story of Gulf War vet and drifter Frank Closky who finds himself on a physical and spiritual journey after he inherits an 1820s farmhouse in New York's Hudson Valley.

At first indifferent to his ownership of "seven acres with a house, outbuildings, and all the contents within," Frank discovers a land where nature speaks its ancient history, where ghosts and seers hold the past, and where he comes to find his place in a rock-laden piece of property and a house with no square corners.

Inspired by writers like Sarah Orne Jewett, naturalist John Burroughs, and poets Gary Snyder and Mary Oliver, author Laurence Carr weaves together fiction, essay, and prose poem to create an insightful and often humorous tale of rural life and how an old house and its land can bring a broken person back to wellness.

Laurence Carr teaches dramatic and creative writing at SUNY New Paltz where he created the SUNY Playwrights' Project and was honored as a Teacher of the Year. Over thirty of his plays and theatre pieces have been produced in New York City, throughout the United States, and in Europe. His prose and poetry have been published and performed throughout the country.


"Original in conception and design … Readers familiar with the region are bound to derive extra pleasure from its local references and particulars. " — Hudson River Valley Review

"Laurence Carr has written a spellbinding story of a house and its occupant, Frank. Pancake Hollow Primer moved me deeply, with its elegiac tone and touches of humor, as Frank discovers new life in objects left in the barn, and in the process, rebuilds his own life. " — Barbara Block Adams, author of The Stone Man and the Poet

"A marvelous book, Laurence Carr has found magic where few would look. We've all seen those old country homesteads haunted by time and by junk rusting in the grass. In such an unlikely setting Carr has written an appealing fable about the healing power of place, using poetry, prose, and a bit of witchcraft. " — Will Nixon, coauthor of Walking Woodstock: Journeys into the Wild Heart of America's Most Famous Small Town