Appalachian Newground is Lee Pennington's twentieth book and the first book he has published after a 23-year hiatus. His books of poetry, essays and short stories have won two nominations for Pulitzer Prizes, earned him the title of Poet Laureate of Kentucky in 1984, and the prices of his former titles have "gone through the roof," as they have been small editions and have never been reprinted.
In this book, as he did in his former publications, Lee Pennington addresses the world of nature and spirit in a unique way, born in him and nurtured by his Eastern Kentucky birthplace among the hills and "hollers" of a mountainside farm. With no running water or electricity, he found the beauty and wisdom of his environment inspiring him to write poems on birch bark and leaves before finally publishing books on paper. His close friend, Jesse Stuart, was his best critic and inspiration throughout the years of Jesse's life.
Pennington's 39 years of teaching Creative Writing in colleges brought him not only masterful skill, but thousands of adoring students, many of whom have become well-known writers themselves.
In this volume you will find the distillation of Pennington's creative genius in his poems in their quiet, passionate intensity, as well as a treatise on his childhood and a screenplay contemplating the past, present and future as seen by humanity and all-pervasive nature in the form of "Ragweed."