When this Kentucky novelist, poet and essayist takes on our national social and moral malignancies in lectern-cadenced forensic, his prose has a sturdier ring than in his fictional endeavors where he tends to meander. Again Mr. Berry expresses his commitment to and affection for the dignity and order of nature and the cleansing power of human love and human social responsibility, one sustaining the other. He angrily, and effectively, denounces the current destruction and/or vilification of living things, from the effect of war to the waste of human and natural resources. He speaks out against Vietnam, strip mining practices, American bureaucracy's ignorance of the craftsman's need for self-sufficiency, the incursion of mechanization in the country where nature, seen from a power boat, is only ""a painted landscape without life or sound."" Man is not a political animal essentially, yet there is a nobility in unifying the private and public moralities. Meditative essays of a Wordsworthian, inspirational, conservationist bent.