Flat Rock Journal: A Day in the Ozark Mountains

Flat Rock Journal: A Day in the Ozark Mountains

by Ken Carey
     
 

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"A Thoreau-voiced memoir of a day off spent recharging the author's batteries by his lonesome in the Ozark woods. "A model of moss-velvet nature writing, quite possibly a classic."--Kirkus Reviews  See more details below

Overview

"A Thoreau-voiced memoir of a day off spent recharging the author's batteries by his lonesome in the Ozark woods. "A model of moss-velvet nature writing, quite possibly a classic."--Kirkus Reviews

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Thoreau-voiced memoir of a day off spent recharging the author's batteries by his lonesome in the Ozark woods. With his wife Sherry and three teenagers, Carey (Return of the Bird Tribes—not reviewed) lives about 12 miles from the nearest Missouri town, which itself has upward of only 600 people. For the first seven years he lived on his Ozark hilltop, he went without radio, television, newspaper, plumbing or electricity, and, with his wife, spent 110% of each day raising and canning vegetables for their year-round food supply. Their kids were utterly amazed when after seven years a huge secondhand gas-burning refrigerator arrived and helped cut down on chores. Meanwhile, the author spends this yearly day off at a mossy limestone hollow called Flat Rock and tells us much about his yarrow tea, the wildly fluctuating weather, the fierce joy amid the jagged forks of a thunderstorm, and climbing a tree in the bone-chilling rain, and the weather within, a kind of spiritual animism that sees life as a cross- species experience to be shared by those who can shed their material form—a thought not distant from Emerson's transcendental Oversoul: "We come here, all of us, seeking a balance between energy and form, spirit and matter, between this sunlight and this clay... [A] part of me remembers these hills when they were dressed in virgin pine." Carey describes a mating romance among a trio of five-inch lizards as a battle of the dinosaurs not unlike the battle of the ants in Walden, and a nest of poisonous copperheads is allowed to propagate indoors under the refrigerator's gas flame. Most delightful is Carey's whistling a ditty from Handel to a pond of singing frogs, then a littleLed Zepplin and a few Grateful Dead riffs: "The frogs just eat it up." A model of moss-velvet nature writing, quite possibly a classic.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062502759
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
04/28/1995
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
4.53(w) x 7.96(h) x 0.75(d)

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