Bibliography of Books by George Ella Lyon

Picture Books Autobiography Novels for Middle Readers For Adults
Books Edited Contributions in Other Works Links & Background Resources AppLit Home


George Ella Lyon is a native of Harlan County, Kentucky living in Lexington.

This booklist was originally supplied by the author in October 2001. Note that it includes information on availability and awards. Additional notes on books, background references, and updates are by Tina L. Hanlon, Ferrum College.

Photo by Ann W. Olson

See also:

AppLit Lesson Plan on Mama is a Miner

An Interview with George Ella Lyon and Richard Jackson

George Ella Lyon, Writer & Teacher. The author's official web site, with information on available and forthcoming titles, background on the author, and photos.

Picture Books (in reverse chronological order):

What Forest Knows. Illus. August Hall. A Richard Jackson Book. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2014. (9781442467750)What Forest Knows cover

"Follows the changing seasons in a forest as trees and animals are nourished and are dependent on each other."

"Stunning illustrations and poetic text fill the pages of this enchanting picture book that celebrates nature and its evocative, peaceful beauty." (WorldCat abstract) 

Planes Fly! Illus. Mick Wiggins. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2013. (9781442450257)

"Illustrations and easy-to-read rhyming text celebrate different kinds of planes, their instruments, what they carry, and what it is like to go for a flight."Which Side Are You On Cover

Which Side Are You On? The Story of a Song. Illus. Christopher Cardinale. El Paso, TX: Cinco Puntos Press, 2011. (1-933693-96-7)

"Tells the story of a song which was written in 1931 by Florence Reece in a rain of bullets.... Florence's husband Sam was a coal miner in Kentucky.... Miners went on strike until they could get better pay, safer working conditions, and health care. The company hired thugs to attack the organizers like Sam Reece. Writer George Ella Lyon tells this hair-raising story through the eyes of one of Florence's daughters, a dry-witted pig-tailed gal, whose vantage point is from under the bed with her six brothers and sisters. The thugs' bullets hit the thin doors and windows of the company house, the kids lying low wonder whether they're going to make it out of this alive, wonder exactly if this strike will make their lives better or end them, but their mother keeps scribbling and singing. 'We need a song,' she tells her kids. That's not at all what they think they need." This summary and other details, including a video clip of Florence Reese singing, are on the publisher's web site. Illustrations are digitally colored scratchboard pictures. Lyon sings some of the song in a fascinating video trailer for the book, which blends period photographs with images from the book.

Winner of the Aesop Prize for 2012 from Children's Folklore Section of the American Folklore Society.

All the Water in the World. Illus. Katherine Tillotson. New York: Atheneum/Simon and Schuster Children’s Publishing, 2011. (9781416971306)

"A lively and inspiring poem weaves together facts about water and the need for water conservation." Text and illustrations are arranged in fanciful patterns to reflect the properties of water.

The Pirate of Kindergarten. Illus. Lynne Avril. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2010. (9781416950240 1416950249)

"Ginny's eyes play tricks on her, making her see everything double, but when she goes to vision screening at school and discovers that not everyone sees this way, she learns that her double vision can be cured."

Sleepsong. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2009. (9780689869730)

"Parents get their child ready for bed as they talk about little animals that are also going to sleep in their nests, dens, and caves."My Friend, the Starfinder cover

You and Me and Home Sweet Home. Illus. Stephanie Anderson. New York: Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2009. ( 9780689875892)

"Third-grader Sharonda and her mother help volunteers from their church to build the house that will be their very own."

My Friend, the Starfinder. Illus. Stephen Gammell. Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, 2008. (9781416927389)

A little girl listens to her old neighbor's story of following a falling star when he was a boy.

Trucks Roll! Illus. Craig Frazier. Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, 2007. (9781416924357). Included in Read to Be Ready! Early Literacy Kit. #7, Trucks. Early Literacy Kits, 2009 ("A collection of five children's picture books designed to help parents and caregivers encourage early literacy skills by establishing a story time routine. Each kit includes a booklet containing nursery rhymes, songs, and finger plays.")

A day in a trucker's life with verses about things trucks bring to us.

No Dessert Forever! Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2006 (1-4169-0385-2, 978-1-4169-0385-7 ).

A little girl's doll helps her work out her frustrations and fantasies in the wake of a difficult family incident.

Weaving the Rainbow. Illus. Stephanie Anderson. Atheneum, 2004. (0-6898-5169-3). Also published in Weaving Art Kit. Art for the Fun of It. Catlin, Ill: Catlin Public Library, 2008 (2 books with weaving kit).

Explains the process a textile artist uses to gather wool from her own sheep

A Mother to Tigers. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Simon & Schuster, 2003. (0-6898-4221-X). Included in Treasures: A Reading/Language Arts Program. Grade 3. New York: Macmillan McGraw-Hill, 2007.

The story of Helen Martini, founder of the Bronx Zoo's animal nursery in 1944, and its first female zookeeper.

One Lucky Girl. Illus. Irene Trivas. DK Ink, Spring 2000. (0-7894-2613-7). Winner, Kentucky Bluegrass Award.

A gripping true story is retold in the voice of a boy who finds his baby sister after a tornado tears apart their trailer home.

Book. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. DK Ink, 1999 (0-7894-2560-2).

A poem about the adventure of exploring books, comparing them to a house, a treasure chest, a farm "sown with words," and leaves for the tree of life. Words from the poem swirl around Catalanotto's magical watercolor illustrations that follow a young girl's explorations of images that blend realism and fantasy. The text of this poem is reprinted as an introductory selection in Crosscurrents of Children's Literature: An Anthology of Texts and Criticism (Ed. J. D. Stahl, Tina L. Hanlon and Elizabeth Lennox Keyser. New York: Oxford UP, 2006).

A Sign. Illus. Chris Soentpiet. Orchard, 1998 (0-531-30073-0).

A writer tells how she thought of different exciting careers before she discovered that she was meant to "make words glow." Based on Lyon's childhood fascination with neon signs and her neighbor who made them. Bright watercolors depict the child's world in the mid-20th century, including her letter to the President after her school watches the beginning of space travel.

Counting on the Woods. Illus. Ann Olson. DK Ink, 1998 (0-7894-2480-0). Included in Houghton Mifflin Reading: Little Big Books. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001, 2006, for grade 1, and Let's Look Around!: Big Book Anthology. Houghton Mifflin reading, grade 1. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001.

Poetic lines and photographs combine counting with appreciation for natural objects observed by a child in the eastern Kentucky woods.

A Traveling Cat. Illus. Paul Brett Johnson. Orchard, 1998 (0-531-30102-8).

"Boulevard was a traveling cat. We named her after the road." A girl tells fondly and sadly of the cat's travels in and out of her small-town family's life in the 1950s. The cat leaves them with one kitten who doesn't travel.

Ada's Pal. Illus. Marguerite Casparian. Orchard, 1996 (0-531-09528-2).

A story about the friendship between two dogs, Ada and Troublesome, and between Ada and a girl who knows what to do when the dog's pal dies.

A Day at Damp Camp. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Orchard, 1996 (0-531-09504-5).

Pairs of rhyming words describe an active day at a girls' camp. Colorful watercolors layered on top of each other illustrate the busy day.

Mama Is a Miner. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Orchard, 1994 (0-531-06853-6). Lesson Plan by Brenda Muse.

A young girl describes her mother's hard work in the mine and her worries about her mother, with loving thoughts of her mother "digging for home" at the end of the day. Warm watercolors alternate between scenes in the mine and family scenes when Mama is home.

Five Live Bongos. Illus. Jacqueline Rogers. Scholastic, 1994 (0-590-46654-2) o.p.; school-ed. paper (0-590-46655-0). Included in Musical Instruments. Winona Storytime Kit. Winona, MN: Winona Public Library, 2007.

Five brothers and sisters drive their parents crazy with home-made musical instruments.

Dreamplace. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Orchard, 1993 (0-531-07171- 4).

A poem about tourists visiting a Pueblo city, learning about the lives of Anasazi people, who left because of drought hundreds of years earlier. Watercolors in earth tones fade in and out of scenes of the past imagined by a modern child. Sunset scenes symbolize the end of life in the dreamlike city.

Who Came Down That Road? Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Orchard, 1992 (0-531-07073-5). Included in grade 2 kit Silver Burdett Ginn Social Studies: People and Places. Parsipanny, NJ: Silver Burdett Ginn, 1997. Reprinted in 2011 by Kane Miller in San Diego (978-1-935279-80-8).

When a child asks his mother the title question, she tells him of people and animals who traveled the road back into prehistoric times.

Cecil's Story. Illus. Peter Catalanotto. Orchard, 1991 (0-531-05912-X); paper (0-531-07063-8). Lesson Plan at

The second-person poetic text follows a boy imagining how he'll have to struggle on the farm if his father goes off to the Civil War and his mother goes to tend his wounds, but Cecil is reassured that his father's strength and affection remain even if he returns with one arm.

The Outside Inn. Illus. Vera Rosenberry. Orchard, 1991; paper, 1997 (0-531-07086-7).

Children by a pond imagine squirmy, buggy meals for their make-believe restaurant and leave treats for all kinds of insects.

Come a Tide. A Reading Rainbow book. Illus. Stephen Gammell. Orchard, 1990 (0-531-05854-9); paper (0-531-07036-0).

The first-person poetic text tells of surviving a spring flood in the mountains. Grandma provides cozy shelter during the rains and then the families dig out their flooded homes. Gammell's colorful watercolor and colored pencil drawings depict with humor and warmth an array of humans and animals, floating, dripping, and coping. Video clip and teacher's guide available at New Hampshire Public TV Reading Rainbow web site. Reading Rainbow videocassette 76 by Lancit Media Productions, Great Plains National TV Library and WNED-TV, 1992 (produced by Kathy Kinsner, directed by Ed Wiseman, written by Susan Leeds).

Basket. Illus. Mary Szilagyi. Orchard, 1990 (0-531-05886-7). Winner, Kentucky Bluegrass Award.

A heart-warming story about the many uses of a grandmother's oak egg basket. She loses it when she moves and thinks she left important things in it, but after her death her granddaughter finds the basket with only one spool in it. She cherishes the basket that reminds her of her grandmother's familiar rhymes and ways. Includes a song about a spool of thread.

A B Cedar: An Alphabet of Trees. Illus. Tom Parker. 1989. Orchard, paper, 1996 (0-531-07080-8).

Tree names from A to Z are illustrated with silhouettes of the full tree and colored india ink drawings of hands with leaves, berries, and nuts.

Together. Illus. Vera Rosenberry. Orchard, 1989; paper (0-531-07047-6). Reprinted with 5 other picture books in Books, Books, Books. New View series. New York: Macmillan/McGraw-Hill School Pub., 1993. Also in Exploring Cultures Through Literature. Ed. Barbara D. Stoodt and Kathy Mitter. Greensboro, NC: Carson-Dellosa, 1993 ("Written to help teachers integrate cultural studies into a literature-based curriculum. Ethnic and cultural backgrounds represented are Hispanic-American, Native-American, Asian-American, African-American, and Jewish-American"). Included with big book and cassette recording in kit Wow!: Wonder of Words. Invitations to Literacy. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1996. Also in kit All of Us Together. Kindergarten Works, Module 1. Needham, MA: Silver Burdett Ginn, 1996.

Two girls of different races celebrate their friendship in lively rhymes and pictures.

A Regular Rolling Noah. Illus. Stephen Gammell. 1986. Aladdin, paper (0-689-71449-1), o.p.

Noah Gabbard from Pathford, KY tells about taking his first train ride to tend the neighbors' animals in a boxcar when they move to flat land in Canada. After he rides home in style, he intends to tell folks, "Be glad you have these mountains to call home." Lively, colorful watercolors emphasize Noah's friendly relations with hoboes and animals, and the changing colors of the sky.

Father Time and the Day Boxes. Illus. Robert Andrew Parker. 1985. Aladdin, paper (0-689-71792-X); o.p., available from the author.

Father Time tosses down a packet for each day from his vault in the clouds.


Don't You Remember? Motes Books, 2007 (0-9778745-6-7). A fascinating memoir based on a mysterious childhood experience and the adult journey it initiated.

Where I'm From/Where Poems Come From. Illus. Robert Hoskins. Writers' & Young Writers' Series #2. Absey Press. Fall 1999 (1-888842-12-1)

A Wordful Child. Photos Ann Olson. Richard Owen Meet-the-Author Series, 1996 (1-57274-016-7).

An autobiography for children tells of Lyon's life history, family life, and work as a writer. Illustrations from some of her books accompany insights on people and events that inspired them.

Novels and Poetry for Middle Readers and Young Adults:

Voices from the March on Washington, with J. Patrick Lewis. Honesdale, PA : WordSong, an imprint of Highlights, 2014 114 pp. (9781620917855)

"Six fictional characters, in cycles of linked poems, relate their memories of the historic day in 1963 when more than 250,000 people from across the United States joined together to march on Washington, D. C., calling for civil and economic rights for African Americans."

"The powerful poems in this poignant collection weave together multiple voices to tell the story of the March on Washington, DC, in 1963. From the woman singing through a terrifying bus ride to DC, to the teenager who came partly because his father told him, 'Don't you dare go to that march,' to the young child riding above the crowd on her father's shoulders, each voice brings a unique perspective to this tale. As the characters tell their personal stories of this historic day, their chorus plunges readers into the experience of being at the march, walking shoulder-to-shoulder with strangers, hearing Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous speech, heading home inspired." (WorldCat abstract)

Holding On to Zoe. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2012 (0-374-33264-9).

Gripping and innovative novel about a troubled teenager: "After sixteen-year-old Jules loses her boyfriend she experiences complications from the pregnancy that drove him away and suddenly, some of the people closest to her are behaving as if her baby is not real."

Sonny's House of Spies. New York: Atheneum, 2004 (0-689-85168-5).

A novel for grades 6 and up, about a thirteen-year-old boy in Alabama in the 1950s
Adapted as a play by Alec Volz, Associate Artistic Director of Walden Theatre in Louisville, Kentucky. Playscripts, Inc., 2010.

Gina. Jamie. Father. Bear. New York: Atheneum/Richard Jackson, 2002 (0-689-84370-4). See Folklore Themes in Longer Appalachian Fiction.

Borrowed Children. Bantam. paper (0-553-28380-4). Winner, Golden Kite Award. Rpt. Univ. Press of KY, 1999.

A twelve-year-old girl, who has to leave school to care for her baby brother and sick mother, discovers links between her mother's childhood and her own during a visit with other relatives. See page on this book with cover, at Univ. Press of KY.

Stranger I Left Behind Me. Troll p.b., 1997 (0-8167-4026-7). Originally published as Red Rover, Red Rover. Orchard, 1989. o.p. Published in Danish as Næsten Voksen, 1989.

Here and Then. Orchard, 1994 (0-531-06866-8); Troll, p.b., 1997 (0-8167-4207-3).

In this time-travel novel, a twelve-year-old girl in a Civil War re-enactment helps a nurse during the war.

Top of Page

For Adults (alphabetical by title):

She Let Herself Go: Poems. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2012 (0-807-14276X).

Back: Poems. Nicholasville, KY: Wind Publications, 2010 (9781893239982). ". . . poet George Ella Lyon conducts us on a journey of spiritual exploration and transcendence, convincingly invoking the anonymous voices of our recent and ancient tribal past -- among them a Gypsy, a Buddhist boy, a Sioux woman -- in a series of monologues that embody our common experience as humans." (Richard Taylor, back cover review)

Braids. Lexington, KY, 1985. A two-act play performed at Transylvania University (Lexington, KY) April 5, 6, 7, 1985, directed by Ann G. Kilkelly. The play "dramatizes the struggle of a young woman named Emma to find her own voice amid a nearly overwhelming multigenerational symphony of family voices—both those of the living and those of the dead, whom Emma resurrects through memory" (Robert M. West, "'We All Need Resurrecting'"—see 2010 article citation below).

Catalpa. Lexington, KY: Wind Publications, 1993. (0-9636545-2-7). Poems. Winner, Appalachian Writers Association Book of the Year. See cover and description by publisher.

 2nd ed. with Introduction by Robert West, 2007. (9781893239586)

Choices: Stories for Adult New Readers. Univ. Press of Kentucky, 1989 (0-8131-0900-0). See page on this book with cover, at Univ. Press of KY.

Looking Back for Words. 1989. Play that "casts the playwright as herself, telling the audience about an amazing and moving incident in her great-great-grandmother's life," when she was pregnant and went to nurse her dying Union soldier husband during the Civil War (Robert M. West, "'We All Need Resurrecting'"—see 2010 article citation below).

Mountain. Hartford, CT: Andrew Mountain Press, 1983, o.p. Poems.

Prayer. Monterey, KY: Larkspur Press, 2002. Broadside no. 16.

With a Hammer for My Heart. paperback. Kentucky Voices Series. Univ. Press of Kentucky, 2007. (9780813191751) New cover at right.

With a Hammer for My Heart. paperback, Avon/Bard, Spring 1999. (0-380-73217-3)

With a Hammer for My Heart. DK Ink, fall 1997. (0-7894-2460-6). Published as Lawandas Leben in German, 2000.

A powerful novel about Lawanda Ingles, a 15-year-old Cardin, Kentucky girl who sells magazines to earn money for college. She makes friends with a Amos Garland, a reclusive alcoholic who has made a home in two abandoned school buses since he was traumatized years earlier by wartime service. When his journals are exposed and misinterpreted, Garland is jailed. Lawanda is horribly injured in her father's angry act of revenge. Her fight to help Garland involves his estranged adult daughter and Lawanda's grandmother Mamaw, a healer who was banned by her church for telling of visions in which she saw God as a woman. Multiple first-person narratives tell this story of love that is sometimes misguided and redemption that triumphs over pain. See short review at Books about Awakenings (Favorite Teenage Angst Books,

Books Edited:

Crossing Troublesome: Twenty-five Years of the Appalachian Writers Workshop. Co-edited with Leatha Kendrick. Lexington, KY: Wind Publications, 2002. See description, cover, note from the editors, and book excerpts at Wind web site. Reviewed by Jane Hicks in Appalachian Heritage, Summer 2003.

A Gathering at the Forks: Fifteen Years of the Hindman Settlement School Appalachian Writers Workshop. Co-edited with Jim Wayne Miller and Gurney Norman. Wise, Virginia: Vision Books, 1993. Available from Hindman Settlement School, Hindman KY 41822; (606) 785-5485.

Harvest of Fire: New and Collected Poems by Lee Howard." Louisville, KY: Motes Books, 2010.

"This definitive collection of Lee's published and unpublished works, edited by her colleague George Ella Lyon, proves Lee Howard's genius, her ear for language, and her love for the place of her birth, in spite of the hurt it handed her. Here are the speech and storytelling traditions of the rural South, served up like a home-cooked meal for all the world to savor....This book includes a foreword by Kentucky Poet Laureate Gurney Norman, an afterword by author Anne Shelby, and numerous photos of Lee Howard, her family, friends and pets."

A Kentucky Christmas. Univ. Press of Kentucky, 2003. 416 pp. (0-8131-2279-1). Paperback 2012. (9780813141152 081314115X)

"A celebration of holiday poetry, fiction, essays, recipes, and songs by more than sixty of the Bluegrass state’s finest writers. Gathered here are writings from some of the legendary voices of Kentucky—and the nation—as well as original Christmas stories and poetry from some of the state’s emerging talents" (from description at Univ. Press of KY page on this book, where contributors are listed, review excerpts are given, and cover is shown).

Old Wounds, New Words: Poems from the Appalachian Poetry Project. Co-edited with Bob Henry Baber and Gurney Norman. Ashland, Kentucky: Jesse Stuart Foundation, 1994 (0- 945084-44-7).

Contributions in Other Books, Periodicals, and Other Media

The American Voice: Anthology of Poetry. Edited by Frederick Smock. Univ. Press of KY, 1998.

Appalachia Inside Out: A Sequel to Voices from the Hills. Edited by Robert J. Higgs, et al. Knoxville: Tennessee UP, 1995. Contains poems by Lyon: "Progress." Vol. I, 194-95. "The Foot Washing." Vol. II, 406-7; "Salvation," 410.

Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010. Featured author George Ella Lyon. Includes poems "If I Could Find My Edges," "Receiving," "From the Page," and "My Dearest Darling (Poem Found in My Grandfather’s Letter)," by Lyon, essay "Inviting the Voice" by Lyon, essay "Where She's From: The Mystery of the Making Place" by Kathy L. May, essay "'We All Need Resurrecting': Transformations and Restorations in the Work of George Ella Lyon" by Robert M. West, and art by Ann W. Olson including photographs of Lyon.

Appalachian Journal, vol. 37 (Spring/Summer 2010): pp. 265, 301. Special Issue on Women in Appalachia. Poems "Clearing Your House" and "Labor."

Appalachian Journal. See the journal's summary of back issues at this link to find other poems and reviews by Lyon published in the journal.

"Appalachian Women Poets: Breaking the Double Silence." American Voice, vol. 8 (Fall 1987): pp. 62-72.

"Archaeology." In I Feel a Little Jumpy Around You: Paired Poems by Men & Women. Ed. Naomi Shihab Nye and Paul B. Janeczko. New York: Aladdin Paperbacks, 1999. "A collection of poems, by male and female authors, presented in pairings that offer insight into how men and women look at the world, both separately and together" (marketed for juvenile audience).

"At Last." 2010. Poem about preparing for travel. In "For All Our Voices." George Ella Lyon Newsletter. Issue no. 4. Summer 2010.

"Blood and Coal (a Swiftian Proposal)." Coal Country: Rising Up against Mountaintop Removal Mining. Ed. Shirley S. Burns, Mari-Lynn Evans, and Silas House. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books, 2009.

Bloodroot: Reflections on Place by Appalachian Women Writers. Edited by Joyce Dyer. Univ. Press of KY, 1998. Includes "Voiceplace" by Lyon.

"Book." Poem in Crosscurrents of Children's Literature: An Anthology of Texts and Criticism. Ed. J. D. Stahl, Tina L. Hanlon and Elizabeth Lennox Keyser. New York: Oxford UP, 2006. (from the picture book listed above)

"Breakfast." Poem in Appalachian Journal, vol. 40 (Spring-Summer 1913): p. 219.

Clark, Amy D, and Nancy M. Hayward. Talking Appalachian: Voice, Identity, and Community. Lexington, Kentucky: The University Press of Kentucky, 2013. 

"Clearing Your House." Poem. See Appalachian Journal, vol. 37 above.

"Contemporary Appalachian Poetry: Sources and Directions." The Kentucky Review, vol. 2:2 (1981): pp. 3-22.

"Contemporary Appalachian Poetry: Sources and Directions." In A Gift of Tongues: Critical Challenges in Contemporary American Poetry. Ed. Marie Harris and Kathleen Aguero. Athens: U of Georgia P, 1987. pp. 307-320.

"A Conversation with George Ella Lyon." Videocassette. Producer Parks Lanier. Director Jan Samoriski. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1989. 25 min. At the Highland Summer Conference George Ella Lyon talks about her novel Borrowed Children and her children's book A B Cedar.

"The Courtship." In Poetry After Lunch: Poems to Read Aloud. Ed. Joyce A. Carroll and Edward E. Wilson. Spring, TX: Absey & Co, 1997.

"Courtship." In Wide Open Spaces: American Frontiers. Audiobook on CD. Literature & Thought. Princeton, NJ: Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, 2005. "Contains literature that challenges the reader, promotes critical thinking, and encourages independent exploration of genres, themes, and issues." By Perfection Learning for high school English.

"Dear Body." Poem in Writing Who We Are: Poems by Kentucky Feminists. Ed. Elizabeth Oakes & Jane Olmsted. Kentucky Feminist Writers Series. Western KY University Press, 1999.

"Dearly Beloved." Essay in I to I: Lifewriting by Kentucky Feminists. Ed. Elizabeth Oakes and Jane OlmstedKentucky Feminist Writers Series. Western KY University Press, 2004.

"Digging for Home." Horn Book Magazine, vol. 82 (May/June 2006): pp. 355-357. Article that discusses "working in the picture book mine" when Lyon and Peter Catalanotto worked on Mama is a Miner. Her song "In the Picture Book Mine" appears with musical score in the Horn Book web site at

Ellis, Ron, ed. Of Woods and Waters: A Kentucky Outdoors Reader. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2005. Essays, poems, and fiction from 1889-2005, including an excerpt from Gina. Jamie. Father. George Ella Lyon, an excerpt from "The Adventures of Col. Daniel Boon,""Our Wiff and Daniel Boone" by Jesse Stuart, poems "Hunter" and "Mountain Fox Hunt" by James Still, selections by Wendell Barry, Harry Caudill, Jim Wayne Miller, and many others.

An Evening with George Ella Lyon. Videocassette. Highland Summer Conference. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1989. 42 min. Lyon reads selections from her works.

An Evening with George Ella Lyon. Videocassette. Highland Summer Conference. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1997. 56 min. Lyon reads selections from her works.

"False Carrot." Horn Book Magazine, vol. 81 (March/April 2005): pp. 141-44. Article on writing with gardening analogies and examples from the process of writing With a Hammer for My Heart and Here and Then.

"Fat Poem." College English, vol. 46.3 (1984): p. 255. Available online through library databases such as JSTOR. Poem comparing gaining weight at age 32 to rising bread.

"Finding Your Story, Writing Your Poem." In Multiliteracies and Writing. Ed. W. Douglas Baker and Kia J. Richmond. Rochester, MI: Michigan Council of Teachers of English, 2009. Language Arts Journal of Michigan, vol. 25, no. 1.

"The Foot Washing." In The Oxford Book of Women's Writing in the United States. Ed. Linda Wagner-Martin and Cathy N. Davidson. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.

"For Bruce White And, Consequently, Hume." Mississippi Review, vol. 3.2 (1974): p. 5.

"Foreword." Appalachian Children's Literature: An Annotated Bibliography. Ed. Roberta T. Herrin and Sheila Quinn Oliver. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2009.

"From the Page." Poem in which the blank page speaks to the writer. Included at the end of the essay "Inviting the Voice." See Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010 above.

George Ella Lyon. Videocassette. Highland Summer Conference. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1993. 60 min. "Author George Ella Lyon reads her poetry and prose and discusses her picture books for children, Who came down that road? and Dreamplace."

"George Ella Lyon: Autobiography Feature." Brief Biographies. Net Industries, 2015. An account of Lyon's family history, early life, influences, and life as a musician and writer, including her involvement with folk music in the 1960s. Includes a poems and excerpts from another poem, the play Braids, and the picture book Book. "Mountain * Bowl * Honeycomb" is a poem about her birthplace that turned out not to be suitable for a picture book text. The other poem excerpt is about the double vision she had as a child. A 1966 passage from one of her international pen pals contains questions about mountain culture from a man in Switzerland, drawing attention to the special status of Appalachian culture and foreshadowing her involvement in Appalachian Studies later. She discusses problems and benefits of being named George Ella for her mother's brother and sister. This appears to be a reprint from a print source, with photo captions but no photographs.

George Ella Lyon Reading from Her Works. Videocassette. Westerville, Ohio: Otterbein College, May 5, 1999. c. 60 min.

Gina. Jamie. Father. Bear. Excerpt in Of Woods and Waters: A Kentucky Outdoors Reader. Ed. Ron Ellis and Nick Lyons. Lexington, KY: The University Press of Kentucky, 2013. See Ellis, above.

"Gion Shrine in Snow Hiroshige." Mississippi Review, vol. 3.2 (1974): p. 12.

"Good." 2000. Poem published online by Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative.

Head of the Holler. Loyal Jones Appalachian Center at Berea College. Program produced by Berea College, on KY Educational Television. 26:40 minutes. Interview with Dr. Chad Berry, director of the Appalachian Center at Berea College. Lyon talks "about growing up in eastern Kentucky, finding inspiration for writing and her upcoming publications." This segment can be seen on

Her Words: Diverse Voices in Contemporary Appalachian Women's Poetry. Ed. Felicia Mitchell. Knoxville: Univ. of TN Press, 2002. Includes poems "Archaeology" and "Papaw," p. 165. Followed by essay by Roberta Herrin, "From Poetry to Picture Books: The Words of George Ella Lyon." pp. 166-76.

Highland Summer Conference, 1978-1993: An Appalachian Anthology. Transcripts from the "conversations" series, produced by Parks Lanier, 1983-1993. Also videocassette, 84 min. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1993. Conversations with Marilou Awiakta (1984), Bill Brown (1990), Ron Eller (1986), Denise Giardina (1988), David Huddle (1991), George Ella Lyon (1986), Jim Wayne Miller (1987), Gurney Norman (1985).

Howard, Lee (Beverly Lee). Harvest of Fire: New and Collected Work. Louisville, KY: Motes Books, 2010. Introduction by George E. Lyon. Foreword by Gurney Norman. Afterword by Anne Shelby. "This definitive collection of Lee's published and unpublished works, edited by her colleague George Ella Lyon, proves Lee Howard's genius, her ear for language, and her love for the place of her birth, in spite of the hurt it handed her. Here are speech and storytelling traditions of the rural South, served up like a home-cooked meal for all the world to savor" (from back cover). " Includes a brief George Ella Lyon interview with Tammy DeRidder who was Lee Howard's life partner."

"If I Could Find My Edges." Poem. See Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010 above.

"In the Balance." Poem about phoebe fledglings. See Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010 above.

"Inviting the Voice." Essay adapted from a previous address to writers, ending with poem "From the Page." See Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010 above.

"Invocation." In Hey, You!: Poems to Skyscrapers, Mosquitoes, and Other Fun Things. Ed. Paul B. Janeczko and Robert Rayevsky. New York: HarperCollins, 2007. One of 25 poems by different authors. Book reviewed by Eliza Nevin in Children's Book and Play Review May 2007. Farnsworth Juvenile Literature Library, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University. Nevin calls Lyon's poem "short and clever...a gentle introduction to the form" of poems written to objects.

"James Still's Place in Appalachian Letters." 1997. Reprinted at BookClub@KET to accompany KY Educational Television programs on James Still.

James Stillís River of Earth: Portrait of a Kentucky Poet. Downloadable study guide by George Ella Lyon for documentary film (1997) by Kentucky Educational Television, for Reading/Writing curriculum for grades 7-adult. Biography by George Ella Lyon and photograph also at this KET link.

Janeczko, Paul B., comp. Going Over to Your Place: Poems for Each Other. New York: Bradbury Press, 1987. Contains poetry by Lyon. Published for children: "over 100 poems reflect the rich and varied experiences of life, from music lessons and a circus parade to a first kiss and other affairs of the heart." Being published in a book by Paul Janeczko before she began writing picture books is discussed in "Interview/George Ella Lyon: Tapping Her Own Roots in Books for the Young." Interview by Carol Polsgrove. Carol Polsgrove on Writers' Lives. Blog. May 2012.

Janeczko, Paul B., comp. Seeing the Blue Between: Advice and Inspiration for Young Poets. Cambridge, Mass: Candlewick Press, 2002, 2006. Lyon is one of 32 poets providing advice and samples of their poetry in this book.

"Just Add Words." In Savory Memories. Ed. L. E. Beattie. Illus. Elisabeth Watts Beattie. Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1998. Forward by Ronni Lundy and Afterword by Jim Wayne Miller. Essay about Lyon's grandmother's life and recipes in a book of personal essays by Kentucky writers about food and memories.

"Just a Mountain." Song with words and music, vocals and guitar by George Ella Lyon, keyboard by Steve Lyon. On Songs for the Mountaintop. CD with 12 songs by different artists in protest of mountaintop removal. Kentuckians for the Commonwealth. 2006.

"Just a Mountain." Public Outcry. CD. KY: Public Outcry, 2008. Also includes Kate Larken, Silas House, Jason Howard, Anne Shelby, and Jessie Lynn Keltner.

Kentucky, Land of Tomorrow. Edited by Thomas H. Appleton, Melba Porter Hay, James C. Klotter, and Thomas E. Stephens. Univ. Press of KY, 2001. A book on the history and beauty of the state. The publisher's page at this link contains an excerpt of poetry by Lyon.

"Labor." Poem. See Appalachian Journal, vol. 37 above.

Listen Here: Women Writing in Appalachia. Edited by Sandra L. Ballard and Patricia L. Hudson. Univ. Press of KY, 2003. Pp. 364-73 contain scene from With a Hammer for My Heart (introduction to Mamaw) and poems "Where I'm From," "Rings," "Salvation," "Growing Light." A biography and list of primary and secondary sources are given for each of the 105 authors in this anthology. See Thematic Table of Contents for Listen Here in AppLit.

The Little Magazine Archive. 1965-1988. Austin: University of Texas Libraries. "The Little Magazine Archive, 1965-1988, comprises the correspondence, manuscripts, production files, and business records resulting from the twenty-one-year life of the periodical" (WorldCat). Lyon was a contributor.

"Living in the River of Words: Rejection and Acceptance." Appalachian Heritage, vol. 42.3 (2014): pp. 81-92. 

"Marilynn's Montessori Memo."The Arrow Finds Its Mark: A Book of Found Poems. Ed. Georgia Heard. Illus. Antoine Guilloppé. New York: Roaring Brook Press, 2012. Based on a memo sent home from Lyon's son's school. The book "presents poems by thirty contemporary poets that were created from words found in school notes, advertisements, street signs, Twitter feeds, and other unlikely sources."

"The Meadow Does Not Know." Poem in Bunny Eat Bunny. Blog by Brenda Bowen, literary agent. Earth Day. April 23, 2010.

"Mountain * Bowl * Honeycomb." Poem about Lyon's birthplace. See "George Ella Lyon: Autobiography Feature," above.

Motif: Writing by Ear. Ed. Marianne Worthington. Vol. 1 in Motif anthology series. Motes, 2009. Contributor to an anthology of writings about music.

"My Dearest Darling (Poem Found in My Grandfather’s Letter)." Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010. Love letter as poem, 1916, from Robert Hoskins to Miss Josie Wilder. See more above on this journal issue with featured author George Ella Lyon.

"The Poet's Job" and "An Appalachian Relic: Notes on 'Swarp'" and poem "Stripped." Appalachian Journal, vol. 8 (Spring 1981).

"Possible Epitaphs." Tricksters, Truthtellers and Lost Souls. Ed. Brian Botts. Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel series, vol. 17. Nicholasville, KY: Wind Publications, 2014. 

"Prayer." Appalachian Journal, vol. 29 (Summer 2002): 459. Poem based on the Lord's Prayer, a tribute to mothers and Mother of the Universe, expressing hopes that the "children" don't destroy the world through greed, prejudice, or bombs.

Readings from Poetry, Fiction and Drama. Videocassette. Director Jan Samoriski. Highland Summer Conference. Radford, VA: Radford University Telecommunications Bureau, 1986. 45 min. "George Ella Lyon reads a variety of her works and gives some background concerning their genesis."

"Receiving." Poem in Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010, about learning to handle her first baby. See more above on this journal issue with featured author George Ella Lyon.

"Red Shoes." Poem in Horn Book Magazine vol. 81 (May/June 2005): p. 269.

"A Regular Rolling Noah." In Expectations, 1987. Ed. Jody Avery. Los Angeles: Braille Institute of America, 1987.

Review of Counting the Sums by Rita Quillen and Alchemy by Dana Wildsmith. Appalachian Journal, vol. 13 (Spring 1986).

Review of Growing Up Hard in Harlan County by G. C. Jones. Appalachian Journal, vol. 24 (Fall 1996).

Review of  Stories I Ain't Told Nobody Yet: Selections from the People Pieces by Jo Carson. Appalachian Journal, vol. 17 (Winter 1990): pp. 204-5. Lyon notes, "That the book is marketed for readers aged 12 and up highlights this possibility" of using them for "discussion, writing, oral history projects, and dramatic performance" in the classroom. "The directness of these voices, along with the intensity and variety of their concerns, make them ideal for young readers who may think poetry, or literature in general, remote and obscure" (p. 205). Lyon also observes that these poems prove that "art is necessary for life; we cannot live, or know how we live, without it. For art is life made perceptible so that we can contemplate or change or reel from the sudden blow."

"The Right to a Voice." Appalachian Journal, vol. 30 (Winter-Spring 2003).

"Rings." College English, vol. 43 (Apr. 1981): p. 373. Available through library databases such as JSTOR. Poem about her grandmothers' rings and rings of birth and death.

Settlement Schools of Appalachia. DVD video. Lexington, KY: KET, the Kentucky Network, 1995. 58 min. Contributor/author with Janet Whitaker. Aired Nov. 28, 1995.

Shiloh and Other Stories by Bobbie Ann Mason. 1982. Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1995. Lyon wrote the Foreword.

“Some Big Loud Woman.” Poem from the 2012 book She Let Herself Go. In "Interview/George Ella Lyon: Tapping Her Own Roots in Books for the Young." Interview by Carol Polsgrove. Carol Polsgrove on Writers' Lives. Blog. May 2012.

"Stripped." Poem in Appalachian Journal, vol. 8 (Spring 1981).

"Sweet Sixteen." Poem in Poetry for Children, with her photo of her old cat (the subject of the poem) and fun facts about Lyon. Blog by Sylvia Vardell. Thursday, Apr. 22, 2010.

Teaching with a Sense of Place. DVD. Appalachian State University, 2002. 55 min. "Third program in a lecture series entitled, 'Teaching with a sense of place,' sponsored by the Hubbard Center, Appalachian Studies Program, English Department, Appalachian Journal, Interdisciplinary Studies Program, and the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership.

Tell It on the Mountain: Appalachian Women Writers. Whitesburg, KY: WMMT-FM, Appalshop, 1995. Cassette recording. "Presents a radio program featuring women writers from the mountains of Southern Appalachia commenting on their lives and reading from their works." Tape 4 (of 7) is Marilou Awiakta and George Ella Lyon.

"Tree Poem." In Falling Down the Page: A Book of List Poems. Ed. Georgia Heard. New York: Roaring Brook Press, 2009.

"Trying to Get Out of My Tree." Poem about identifying with different kinds of trees. In GottaBook, blog by Gregory K. Pincus. Sunday, Apr. 25, 2010.

"Unbelievable." Poem about poet Lee Howard, Lyon's colleague and friend. Motes Books, 2010. Published online with "Harvest of Fire" by Lee Howard, title poem of Howard's book of poems edited by Lyon (listed above).

United States of Poetry. PBS, 1996. Review by James S. Torrens of this five-part TV series mentions Lyon's reading, in videocassette of Parts 1-3. America 10 Feb 1996: p. 25. Review accessed online 12/16/03 through Academic Index ASAP. United States of Poetry also available on DVD.

"Virginia Woolf and the Problem of the Body." In Virginia Woolf: Centennial Essays. Ed. Elaine K. Ginsberg and Laura M. Gottlieb. Troy, NY: Whitston, 1983. Rpt. in Virginia Woolf. Bloom's Biocritiques series. Ed. Harold Bloom. Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publishers, 2005.

"Where I'm From," audio and print versions of poem, with discussion, in the author's web site George Ella Lyon, Poet and Writer.  See also articles by Bishop, DelliCarpini, Robinson-Cseke and Skelton below.

"Where I'm From" Poems by Ferrum College Students in this web site.

Try and other Internet sites for a growing collection of "Where I'm From" poems and videos created by many different people.

"Where I'm From." Poem reprinted at Local Learning: Poetry and Sense of Place. Lesson plan with Lyon's poem from Summer 2000 Louisiana Voices Institute.

"Where I'm From." In Rethinking Our Classrooms. Vol. 2, The Power of Words. Ed. Bill Bigelow, et al. Milwaukee, WI: Rethinking Schools, 2007. In 2001 ed. Vol. 2 is called Teaching for Equity and Justice.

Where I'm From: Poems from Students of Appalachian Literature. Ed. Silas House. Berea, KY: Berea College, 2011. Authors Steven Borsman, Brittany Buchanan, Crystal Collett, Keri N Collins, Danny Dyar,; Katie Frensley, Yvonne Godfrey, Ethan Hamblin, Silas House, Megan Rebecckiah Jones, Liz Kilburn, George Ella Lyon, Zoe Minton, Kia L Missamore, Desirae Negron, Marcus Plumlee, Emily Grace Sarver-Wolf, Lesley Sneed, Cassie Walters, Lucy Weakley. "In the Fall of 2010 I gave an assignment in my Appalachian Literature class at Berea College, telling my students to write their own version of 'Where I'm From' poem based on the writing prompt and poem by George Ella Lyon, one of the preeminent Appalachian poets. I was so impressed by the results of the assignment that I felt the poems needed to be preserved in a bound document. Thus, this little book. These students completely captured the complexities of this region and their poems contain all the joys and sorrows of living in Appalachia. I am proud that they were my students and I am very proud that together we produced this record of contemporary Appalachian Life" (Silas House).

Top of Page

Links and Background Resources:

Allen, G. Review of Many-storied House: Poems by George Ella LyonAppalachian Journal, vol. 41 (2013): pp. 165-166. 

Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010. Featured author George Ella Lyon. Includes poems "If I Could Find My Edges," "Receiving," "From the Page," and "My Dearest Darling (Poem Found in My Grandfather’s Letter)," by Lyon, essay "Inviting the Voice" by Lyon, essay "Where She's From: The Mystery of the Making Place" by Kathy L. May, essay "'We All Need Resurrecting': Transformations and Restorations in the Work of George Ella Lyon" by Robert M. West, and art by Ann W. Olson including photographs of Lyon.

Appalachian Poetry Project Papers. Lexington: University of Kentucky Libraries, 1980-1982. Archival material. Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative.

Asher, Suzanne. George Ella Lyon. 1997. Essay at KYLIT web site.

Arvidson, Anne J. and Pamela Blanco. "Reading across Rhode Island: One Book, One State, Many Successful Readers." The English Journal, vol. 93.5, Secondary Readers Reading Successfully (May 2004): pp. 47-53. Discussion of state reading program lists activity using Lyon's "Where I'm From" poem.

Baker, Karen. Whole Language is ABLE—Just Do It! Research to Practice. U. S. Dept. of Education: ERIC, 2006. "The whole language approach was used with a 'well' or successful adult basic and literacy education (ABLE) group. Literature was chosen as a curriculum for which group work could be devised that was geared to all levels of students. The book used was 'Choices' by George Ella Lyon, a book of short stories written by characters who live in a small mountain community and the choices they made in their lives....Findings included the following: nonreaders became active readers and participants with the help of other readers; reading skills, vocabulary, and comprehension improved noticeably; students began to take books home; lower-level students, who were quiet and reserved, began sharing their opinions and experiences; and students learned social skills and solved problems together. Students enjoyed having groups and began asking for group work daily.... After finishing 'Choices,' students began work on their own short stories. (One student's story is appended.)" (WorldCat)

Bishop, Rudine Sims. "Profile: George Ella Lyon." Language Arts, vol. 67 (Oct 1990): pp. 611+. Interview.

Bishop, Sharon. "The Power of Place." The English Journal, vol. 96.6 (2004): pp. 65-69. Available online through library databases such as JSTOR. Place-based education in a high school language arts curriculum includes student responses to Lyon's "Where I'm From" poem.

Black, Crystal. Page on George Ella Lyon by Virginia Tech Student.

BookClub@KET. Dec. 2004. Hour-long program on Kentucky Educational TV about A Kentucky Christmas, available for watching on the web site with video readings, other background material and links. Lyon was on the program with a group of writers and musicians.

Brandt, Julia K. Review of Counting on the Woods. The American Biology Teacher, vol. 62.7 (2000): p. 530.

Canada. Collaborative Middle School Teaching Unit, using Who Came Down that Road as a model in creating timeline for Canada. Library Media Services. Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln, Nebraska (link can't be found 12/16/03).

Cardon, Donna. Review of Sonny's House of Spies. Children's Book and Play Review June 2005. Farnsworth Juvenile Literature Library, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University.

Corum, Jennifer L. Changing Lands, Changing Voices: The Influence of the Appalachian Region on Four Appalachian Poets. Honors thesis for BA with Honors. Jefferson City, TN: Carson-Newman College, 1996. The poets are George Ella Lyon, Jeff Daniel Marion, Kathryn Stripling Byer, James Still.

Davis, Merlene. "Book Teaches Kids the Power of a Song." Herald Leader [Lexington, KY] 22 Nov. 2011. Column with photos about Lyon's picture book What Side Are We On? Includes interesting background about the song and the book.

DelliCarpini, Margo and Amanda Nicole Gulla. "Sharing Stories and Developing Multiple Perspectives in Post-9/11 Classrooms." The English Journal, vol. 96. 2 (Nov. 2006): pp. 47-51. Includes discussion of teaching diverse ESL students using Lyon's poem "Where I'm From."

An Electronic Conversation with George Ella Lyon. Video available through KET, first aired May 1997 as a live seminar.

Emert, Toby. "'The Transpoemations Project': Digital Storytelling, Contemporary Poetry, and Refugee Boys." Intercultural Education, vol. 24.4 (2013): pp. 355-365. "This article describes a five-week summer literacy program designed for a group of 70 multilingual refugee boys resettled from their home countries in Africa and Asia to a city in the Southeastern USA. The students attended local public schools but struggled to experience academic success in the traditional classroom. The summer program addressed this issue by offering the students a curriculum in which they worked, alongside American teachers, in small learning groups, completing activities premised on specific twenty-first century literacies, such as critical thinking and the creative manipulation of texts and technologies. The students interacted with high-interest literature written in English and with selected productivity tools, including the filmmaking software MovieMaker. The program culminated with each student producing a digital story--a "transpoemation"--adapted from an autobiographical response to George Ella Lyon's poem, 'Where I'm From.' The students translated their own poems through a series of scaffolded steps in order to create short films for preview and critique. Working with the computer, with texts they had generated, and with images and music, the students showcased their facility with storytelling, with the English vocabulary they were acquiring, and with visual media, demonstrating a growing sense of academic confidence." 

George Ella Lyon, Poet and Writer. The author's official web site, with information on available and forthcoming titles, background on the author, and photos. Includes audio and print versions of poem "Where I'm From," with discussion.

"George Ella Lyon." Contemporary Authors Online. The Gale Group, 2001.

"George Ella Lyon." Contemporary Southern Writers. St. James Press, 1999. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: The Gale Group. 2004. Available online through Galenet library services.

"George Ella Lyon." Cyclopedia of Young Adult Authors. Vol. 2. Pasadena, CA: Salem Press, 2005.

"George Ella Lyon." Major Authors and Illustrators for Children and Young Adults. 2nd ed., 8 vols. Gale Group, 2002. Reproduced in Biography Resource Center. Farmington Hills, Mich.: The Gale Group. 2004. Available online through Galenet library services. Describes a number of Lyon's books with quotations from Lyon and reviewers, including her comment on Nancy's Willard's influential observations about the similarity between poetry and picture books. Lists many periodical reviews on Lyon's books.

"George Ella Lyon." Something About the Author, vol. 68. Detroit: Gale, 1992, 2010.

George Ella Lyon, Kentucky Author by Jan Ross, Library Media Specialist, Dixie Elementary Magnet School, Lexington, KY. Fourth-grade lesson plan with power point slide show about Lyon's life and work.

George Ella Lyon. Special Session. SAMLA. South Atlantic Review, vol. 65 (Summer 2000): p. 35. Conference session includes talks about Lyon's work by Roberta Herrin, Sandra Ballard, Robert West, and Marianne Worthington. Lyon's address as creative speaker, "The Right to a Voice," is listed on p. 45.

George Ella Lyon web page at Wind Publications web site (with photo, background, and letter from the author to young readers, but booklist is not as up-to-date as this one). Also a page on Catalpa and Crossing Troublesome in this site.

George Ella Lyon, Lawandas Leben. Essay in German on German edition of With a Hammer for My Heart.

"George Ella Lyon Sets her Latest Novel in a Homophobic, Racially Divisive Post-WWII Alabama...." The Publishers Weekly, vol. 251.27 (2004): p. 54.

"George Ella Lyon: Voices Rooted in Place," interview by Jeff Daniel Marion (1994). In Appalachia and Beyond: Conversations with Writers from the Mountain South. Ed. John Lang. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2006.

Green, Chris. "Materializing the Sublime Reader: Cultural Studies, Reader Response, and Community Service in the Creative Writing Workshop." College English, vol. 64.2 (Nov. 2001): pp. 153-74. A Kentucky writer and teacher recommends Lyon's "Contemporary Appalachian Poetry: Sources and Directions" in creative writing workshops.

Hague, Richard. "George Ella Lyon Has A Vision of Jim Wayne Miller in Heaven." Poem in Appalachian Journal, vol. 29 (Spring 2002).

Hanlon, Tina L. "Lyon, George Ella (1949- )." The Oxford Encyclopedia of Children's Literature. Vol. 3. Ed. Jack Zipes. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. p. 7.

Hanlon, Tina L. “Streams of Past and Present in Contemporary Appalachian Books for Children.” Paper presented at Children’s Literature Association Conference, Simmons College, Boston, June 2012. Includes discussion of Lyon's Which Side Are You On?

Hanlon, Tina L. "Three Recent Developments in Appalachian Fiction for Children: Regionalism in a New Century." Paper presented at Children's Literature Association 36th Annual Conference: The Best of Three, Charlotte, NC, June 12, 2009. Includes discussion of Lyon's Gina. Jamie. Father. Bear.

Herrin, Roberta. "From Poetry to Picture Books: The Words of George Ella Lyon." In Her Words: Diverse Voices in Contemporary Appalachian Women's Poetry. Ed. Felicia Mitchell. Knoxville: Univ. of TN Press, 2002. pp. 166-77. Also includes Lyon's poems "Archaeology" and "Papaw," p. 165.

Hipple, Ted. Review of With A Hammer for My Heart. The ALAN Review, vol. 25 (Winter 1998). Reprinted online. "This is a powerful novel, compelling, engagingly written, with strongly painted characters, including Lawanda’s Mamaw, who heals by the laying on of hands and proclaims that God is a woman."

Hulick, Jeannette. Review of My Friend, the Starfinder. Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, vol. 61.7 (2008): pp. 297-298.

Hurst, Carol. A Timeline Activity with Children's Books. Includes recommendation of Cecil's Story. Carol Hurst's Children's Literature Site.

"I'm From." Poem about Mexico by Olivia S., Denver, CO, inspired by Lyon's "Where I'm From," at

"Interview/George Ella Lyon: Tapping Her Own Roots in Books for the Young." Interview by Carol Polsgrove. Carol Polsgrove on Writers' Lives. Blog. May 2012. Lyon discusses her life and career as a writer, censorship challenges to her books, our relationship to the earth, her recent picture book Which Side Are You On? and other writings for children and adults. The poem “Some Big Loud Woman” is included at the end, from the 2012 book of poems She Let Herself Go.

Iron Mountain Review: 25th Annual Literary Festival: A Reunion Celebration of Appalachian Literature. Emory, VA: Emory & Henry College, 2006. "Includes program and biographical sketches of authors. Festival honorees include: Lisa Alther, Maggie Anderson, Kathryn Stripling Byer, Jo Carson, Fred Chappell, John Ehle, Denise Giardina, David Huddle, George Ella Lyon, Jeff Daniel Marion, Sharyn McCrumb, Michael McFee, Robert Morgan, Gurney Norman, Ron Rash, Lee Smith, Meredith Sue Willis" (WorldCat).

Kentucky Bluegrass Award. List at Winner's Circle link includes award for One Lucky Girl, in K-2 division, 2002, and Basket in K-3 division, 1993. Kentucky Reading Association.

Kilkelly, Ann. "'Broads' Too Tight to Sing." In Upstaging Big Daddy: Directing Theater as if Gender and Race Matter. Ed. Ellen Donkin and Susan Clement. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1993. pp. 193-209. Rpt. in Iron Mountain Review, vol. 10 (1994): 15-21. This book is reviewed by Toni-Haring-Smith in Theatre Journal, vol. 47, no. 3, Problems in Feminism (Oct. 1995): pp. 427-28.

Kupitz, Gabriele I. Review of Counting on the Woods: A Poem. Children's Book and Play Review Sept./Oct. 1998. Farnsworth Juvenile Literature Library, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University.

Lang, John, ed. George Ella Lyon Issue. Iron Mountain Review, vol. 10 (Summer 1994).

Ley, Terry C., ed. "Parents and Parenthood Prominent in New Paperbacks." The English Journal, vol. 79.7 (1990): pp. 80-83. Available online through library databases such as JSTOR. Includes short review of Lyon's Borrowed Children.

Local Learning: Poetry and Sense of Place. Lesson plan with a copy of Lyon's poem "Where I'm From," from Summer 2000 Louisiana Voices Institute.

"Lyon, George Ella." Entry by Harriette C. Buchanan in Encyclopedia of Appalachia. Ed. Rudy Abramson and Jean Haskell. Knoxville: Univ. of Tennessee Press, 2006. pp. 1070-71. There is also discussion and an illustration from Mama is a Miner in the entry "Children's Literature" by Roberta Herrin, p. 1053.

McKernan, Llewellyn. Review of Dreamplace, Who Came Down That Road?, The Outside Inn, Cecil's Story, Basket, Come A Tide, Together, and A B Cedar: An Alphabet of Trees. Appalachian Journal, vol. 21 (Winter 1994).

May, Kathy L. "Where She's From: The Mystery of the Making Place." Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010: 13-18. Biographical essay in issue with George Ella Lyon as featured writer. See Appalachian Heritage above.

McKernan, Llewellyn. Review of Father Time and the Day Boxes, A Regular Rolling Noah, Borrowed Children. Appalachian Journal, vol. 15 (Summer 1988).

Miller, Jim Wayne. "A Heart Leafed with Words Like a Tree: The Poetry of George Ella Lyon." Iron Mountain Review, vol. 10 (Summer 1994). pp. 6-8.

Muse, Brenda. Lesson Plan on Mama is a Miner in AppLit. 2001.

Mystery of the Making Place. George Ella Lyon: Writer in Residence, 2001. Shepherd College, WV. Web site by Sarah Alouf with a variety of resources by and about Lyon.

Newton, Joanna Barnes. Review of With a Hammer for My Heart. Appalachian Journal, vol. 25 (Summer 1998).

Nolan, Charlotte. "Hometown Author Has Written a New Book." Harlan Daily Enterprise [Harlan, KY] 2 Nov. 2011. Review of Which Side Are You On? by a writer who has known Lyon and her family since her childhood. Nolan helped the illustrator Christopher Cardinale tour Harlan to see what the coal mining camps looked like.

Olson, Ann. W. Photographs in Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010. Includes photographs of Lyon. Essay by David Edwards on p. 115 discusses Olson's photographs and collaboration with Lyon.

Paul, Pamela. "Protest Songs for Young Dissenters." The New York Times Sunday Book Review 26 Oct. 2011. Favorable review of Lyon's Which Side Are You On? and Blowin' in the Wind by Bob Dylan and Jon Muth. Excerpt: "The story is a good and important one, and it is well told for an elementary-school audience....Told from the point of view of the songwriter’s fictionalized daughter, 'Which Side Are You On?' is styled like a graphic novel rather than a picture book, which makes sense given the sophistication of its message and brutality of some images (for instance, gunshots being fired into the bedroom). An author’s note and bibliography adds historical detail and context. Cardinale’s folksy, woodcut-style paintings include several memorable images.

Reading Rainbow: Come a Tide. Activity suggestion for Come a Tide. Summary of book: "This delightful book tells the story of one quirky family's adventure during a spring flood." 

Roberts, Tracy L. and George Ella Lyon. "An Interview with George Ella Lyon." Spring 2001. In AppLit Articles section. Presented at Children's Literature Association Conference, Buffalo, June 2001.

Robinson-Cseke, Maria. "The Negotiated Identity of the Artist/Teacher: Research As Video Art." Canadian Review of Art Education: Research and Issues,vol. 34: pp. 101-8. "The author's autobiographical poem [inspired by George Ella Lyon (1999)], marked the beginning of an arts-based inquiry into a question of identity that took further shape through a video-artwork, 'The Evolution of an Art Teacher: Where I'm From.'"

Skelton, Sheri. "Finding a Place for Poetry in the Classroom Every Day." The English Journal, vol. 6.1 (2006): pp. 25-29. Available online through library databases such as JSTOR. Discusses Alaska students' responses to Lyon's "Where I'm From."

Smith, Jennifer S. Mining the Mountain of Appalachian Children's Literature: Defining a Multicultural Literature. Thesis (Ph. D.). The Ohio State University, 2002.

Stan, Susan. Review of Come a Tide. The Five Owls May-June 1995, p. 95.

Stippich, Sarah. "Legacies for Kids: Book Reviews." Review of  Which Side Are You On? The Story of a Song by George Ella Lyon, iIllustrated by Christopher Cardinale, and other children's books. Pennsylvania Legacies, vol. 14.1 (2014): pp. 36-37.

Strassman, Barbara K. "What You Know by Heart: How to Develop Curriculum for Your Writing Workshop." Review of book with this title by Katie Wood Ray. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy 47 (Sept. 2003): pp.102+. Review discusses how Ray uses Lyon's Cecil's Story.

Sullivan, Sarah. "A Stone to Stand On." Journal of Children's Literature, vol. 32.1 (2006): pp. 22-26. ERIC Database. "In this article, the author explores what a sense of place is and how various authors convey that in their work. She states that writers imbue their work with a sense of place through longing and distance from that place, distilled through imagination.... She describes a writing exercise in a picture book workshop led by George Ella Lyon at the Carnegie Center in Lexington, Kentucky where she was asked to visualize a childhood place where she had always felt safe and then write a poem about it. This exercise eventually led to the 2005 publication of the author's picture book titled Root Beer and Banana."

Talbott, Michelle Justus. Southern Writer: George Ella Lyon. Essay. Buchanan Public Library, VA.

Teacher to Teacher: Trade Book Teaching Ideas from the OLRC Reading Group: "Choices." Ohio Literacy Resource Center. Kent State Univ., OH.

Thurman, Susan (Henderson College, Kentucky). Literary Kentucky from A to Z includes notes on Lyon. In U. S. Literary Map Project. American Literature Resources. Masterpiece Theatre's American Collection Educator's Site.

Visiting, with pictures and review excerpts on Lyon's books.

West, Robert (Wake Forest Univ.). “George Ella Lyon’s Catalpa.” South Atlantic Modern Language Association Annual Convention, Birmingham, Alabama, November 2000.

West, Robert M. "'We All Need Resurrecting': Transformations and Restorations in the Work of George Ella Lyon." Appalachian Heritage Summer 2010. Essay on the best previous criticism of Lyon's writing and "a recurring focus on resurrection and birth" in a variety of works by Lyon, including her plays. See more above on this journal issue with featured author George Ella Lyon.

Worthington, Marianne. "'Pleasure Out of Telling': Voice Poems in George Ella Lyon's Fiction for Adults." Appalachian Journal, vol. 32 (Fall 2004). pp. 100-13.

Worthington, Marianne. Review of She Let Herself Go." Journal of Appalachian Studies, vol. 20.1 (2014): pp. 85-86. 

Young, Cathy. Books about Awakenings. Favorite Teenage Angst Books at Short review of With a Hammer for My Heart.

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