A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia

Rose McLarney (Editor) Laura-Gray Street (Editor)
& 64 more


Getting acquainted with local flora and fauna is the perfect way to begin to understand the wonder of nature. The natural environment of Southern Appalachia, with habitats that span the Blue Ridge to the Cumberland Plateau, is one of the most biodiverse on earth. A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia--a hybrid literary and natural history anthology--showcases sixty of the many species indigenous to the region.

Ecologically, culturally, and artistically, Southern Appalachia is rich in paradox and stereotype-defying complexity. Its species range from the iconic and inveterate--such as the speckled trout, pileated woodpecker, copperhead, and black bear--to the elusive and endangered--such as the American chestnut, Carolina gorge moss, chucky madtom, and lampshade spider. The anthology brings together art and science to help the reader experience this immense ecological wealth.

Stunning images by seven Southern Appalachian artists and conversationally written natural history information complement contemporary poems from writers such as Ellen Bryant Voigt, Wendell Berry, Janisse Ray, Sean Hill, Rebecca Gayle Howell, Deborah A. Miranda, Ron Rash, and Mary Oliver. Their insights illuminate the wonders of the mountain South, fostering intimate connections. The guide is an invitation to get to know Appalachia in the broadest, most poetic sense.

Product Details

$24.95  $22.95
University of Georgia Press
Publish Date
October 15, 2019

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About the Author

Rose McLarney (Editor)
ROSE McLARNEY is an associate professor of creative writing at Auburn University and coeditor in chief and poetry editor of the Southern Humanities Review. She has published three collections of poems, Forage, The Always Broken Plates of Mountains, and Its Day Being Gone, winner of the National Poetry Series. Her work has appeared in the Kenyon Review, Southern Review, New England Review, Missouri Review, and many other publications.

Laura-Gray Street (Editor)
LAURA-GRAY STREET is an associate professor of English and directs the Creative Writing Program at Randolph College in Lynchburg, Virginia. She isthe author of Pigment and Fume and coeditor, with Ann Fisher-Wirth, of The Ecopoetry Anthology. Her work has appeared in the Colorado Review, Poecology, Poet Lore, Poetry Daily, Hawk & Handsaw, Many Mountains Moving, Gargoyle, ISLE, Shenandoah, Meridian, Blackbird, and elsewhere.

L. L. Gaddy (Editor)
L. L. GADDY is a naturalist and writer based in South Carolina. He heads Terra Incognita, a nonprofit company in South Carolina that does environmental consulting, research, and exploration and is president of Terra Incognita Books, which publishes work on natural history and travel. He is the author of Spiders of the Carolinas and A Naturalist's Guide to the Southern Blue Ridge Front.


Although titled A Literary Field Guide to Southern Appalachia, this book -- as much a collection of poetry as a work of science -- can be enjoyed either in the field or indoors. Small enough to carry in a backpack, it could function as a companion on an outing to wood, field, or stream. Or it could be read on a quiet winter's evening by the fire while planning the next season's hikes or simply contemplating nature's many wonders.--Chris Scott "Chapter 16 "