JSNH&B home • Fall 2010 • vol. 3 no. 2

“The Ark of the Sierra"

Gary Snyder, from Back on the Fire, 2007

Gary SnyderGary Snyder (1930- ) is most famous for his Pulitzer Prize–winning poetry, but he is also a prolific essayist. His themes often touch on “our place in space,” the human impact on society and the environment. Snyder’s philosophy is holistic—that all elements that we encounter in our lives are interlinked and dependent on each other for value and existence.

In this essay, “The Ark of the Sierra,” from his collection Back on the Fire (2007), Snyder examines our relationship with fire and urges us toward responsible stewardship of this unique and irreplaceable region.


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Dan DeFoeRead by Daniel DeFoe, Professor of History, Sierra College