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The Poetry of Nature

It's Often A Controversial Issue, But One Stunningly Illustrated Picture Book Handles It With Grace


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By Megan Kelley 


Teaching children about environmental issues is incredibly important, but it can also be pretty darn difficult. When some folks from Tennessee realized there weren't any good resources to educate kids about mountaintop-removal coal mining (which threatens the land and communities in the region), they decided to make their own. Here's a few excerpts from their story.


The story begins by introducing the narrator: Lone

This morning as i wake, the warm sunlight travels down my slopes
and slides across my ridges.

Good morning to you! My name is Lone Mountain.
I am a part of the Appalachian mountain chain,
which makes me one of the oldest mountains on earth!

My brother and sister mountains and I have seen many mornings together,
but not all have been as peaceful as this one,

Stay with me and I will tell you a story,



Lone Mountain discusses a typical day in its life. Birds chirp, children play in the streams, a father and daughter go hunting together, and a grandmother and grandson gather mushrooms to eat.

Then, the story takes a turn ...

But the people who loved and relied upon Lone Mountain are not quick to give in. They gather together to discuss how to save the mountain.

Want to read the rest? Check out the links below for how to get a copy of your very own.


See additional sources at:

This fantastic and beautiful children's book is being made by the Lone Mountain Book Project (they have a Facebook page that could use some lovin'). It was written and illustrated by Saro Lynch-Thomason, and we've posted it here with her permission. You can get your own copy of the book — or just support the project.