About the book
After a long absence from his native southern Appalachians, Thomas Rain Crowe returned to live alone deep in the North Carolina woods. This is Crowe’s chronicle of that time when, for four years, he survived by his own hand without electricity, plumbing, modern-day transportation, or regular income. It is a Walden for today, paced to nature’s rhythms and cycles and filled with a wisdom one gains only through the pursuit of a consciously simple, spiritual, environmentally responsible life.
Crowe made his home in a small cabin he had helped to build years before—at a restless age when he could not have imagined that the place would one day call him back. The cabin sat on what was once the farm of an old mountain man named Zoro Guice. As we absorb Crowe’s sharp observations on southern Appalachian natural history, we also come to know Zoro and the other singular folk who showed Crowe the mountain ways that would see him through those four years.
Crowe writes of many things: digging a root cellar, being a good listener, gathering wood, living in the moment, tending a mountain garden. He explores profound questions on wilderness, self-sufficiency, urban growth, and ecological overload. Yet we are never burdened by their weight but rather enriched by his thoughtfulness and delighted by his storytelling.
About the author
Thomas Rain Crowe is the author of eleven books of original and translated works, as well as a poet, translator, editor, publisher, and recording artist. He received the Ragan Old North State Award for Nonfiction given by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association and the Phillip D. Reed Memorial Award given by the Southern Environmental Law Center for Zoro’s Field. He lives in Tuckasegee, North Carolina.