Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Pinhook by Janisse Ray


from the publisher's website: "Janisse Ray, award-winning author of Ecology of a Cracker Childhood and Wild Card Quilt, writes an evocative paean to wildness and wilderness restoration with an extraordinary journey into southern Georgia's Pinhook Swamp.

Pinhook Swamp acts as a vital watershed and wildlife corridor, a link between the great southern wildernesses of Okefenokee Swamp and Osceola National Forest. Together Okefenokee, Osceola, and Pinhook form one of the largest expanse of protected wild land east of the Mississippi River. This is one of America's last truly wild places, and Pinhook takes us into its heart.


Ray comes to know Pinhook intimately as she joins the fight to protect it, spending the night in the swamp, tasting honey made from its flowers, tracking wildlife, and talking to others about their relationship with the swamp. Ray sees Pinhook through the eyes of the people who live there--naturalists, beekeepers, homesteaders, hunters, and locals at the country store. In lyrical, down-home prose, she draws together the swamp's need for restoration and the human desire for wholeness and wildness in our own lives and landscapes."

This is such a fine book. Ray looks closely at the smallest things and writes of them like a poet. I highly recommend it.

This lovely book seems to me particularly important just now when, in the name of job creation, we have politicians calling for exploring for oil in the  Everglades, dismantling the Environmental Protection Agency, easing the regulations against smog, rolling back years of progress toward a less polluted world . . .

Talk about a fragmented land.  Some people think it's laughable to worry about species extinction or air quality or global warming. 

Others of us fear that, if the anti-environmentalists have their way. we'll be on the road to a future that looks like this.
 
I'm deeply afraid of the direction things are going.  The mindset that decides to deal with global warming by denying it . . . while turning up the air conditioner, thus adding to the problem, is all  too common.

But I'm preaching to the choir, I expect. 

Meanwhile, I'll be looking for more of Janisse Ray's books. 

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13 comments:

Thérèse said...

Pinhook: a place to defend!

Ms. A said...

I don't know how you have enough hours in your day, to do everything you do, and still read, too.

Martin said...

It is scary, that in the face of all we know, there are still those who would lead us down the road to hell.

Victoria said...

I feel the same as you, Vicki. And I cannot understand why the people who think global warming is a joke just won't, or can't, get this simple message: When the earth is gone, so are humans.

I'm going to look for "Pinhook." It sounds like a great read, thanks for posting about it.

Marilyn said...

It's the same all over the globe I think.

Brian Miller said...

nice hit on the book...i am one of those that wants the planet to never look like that...

Vicki Lane said...

Mrs. A, I read while I eat breakfast and lunch and I really can't fall asleep without reading a bit first. And I listen to recorded books when I'm working in the kitchen. I almost never watch TV-- that frees up lots of hours.

Mama-Bug said...

Great info about this book. Definitely on my to read list now.

Friko said...

Politicians! what turns them into short-sighted, greedy, dishonest, almost evil beings? They must once have been ordinary,open-minded, kindly people?

Maybe not, they wouldn't have gone in for politics then, would they?

Glenda Beall said...

Vicki,
I like the review of Ray's book. We need people to speak up for our environment. So many people seem to think it doesn't matter, but they are listening to the wrong voices - most of them on a certain TV Network.

Louise said...

Definitely sounds like a book to read. Your fear is mine. We are losing the battle, I fear, and I don't know what can be done to turn the tide.

NCmountainwoman said...

Preach on, sister. Preach on.

I will definitely look for the book.

Mel said...

Thanks for the perfect book recommendation. Much of my environmental philosophy was shaped by Edward Abbey in college, and I'm shocked and angry that we are even less concerned as a whole with protecting what little we have left now. I had hoped for reason and science to win out, but it appears that ignorance and denial are in vogue in the political sphere.
For now, I take comfort in knowing that there are still a few wild places left to know. I look forward to reading Pinhook and look forward to a sea change in our collective world view.