Hounds on the Mountain (Paperback)
First published in 1937, Hounds on the Mountain evokes Still's personal experiences of Eastern Kentucky through reflective folk poems describing Appalachian mountain life from birth through death. Written during the Great Depression, the collection emphasizes a collective reliance on the earth and the primacy of nature that Still observed from the seclusion of his thirty-one acre home in Knott County, Kentucky.
The "Dean of Appalachian Literature" describes the changing landscape of his adopted community as a tale of personal and environmental erosion. In many ways the author asks his readers to better protect this fragile ecosphere and set the stage for his rise to eminence in the literary field. Still's regional focus on the self-made authenticity of community artisans also reminded American readers during the Great Depression that local economies needed to be supported just as much as those at the national and global level. Both in prose and product, Hounds on the Mountain allows today's audiences to appreciate the book as both literature and cultural symbolism of Appalachian life as it exists then and now.