This issue explores the extremes in nature—from the terrifying peaks of the mountains and the towering peaks of ocean waves to storms capable of wiping out an entire group of soldiers. The stories, poems, and art here all remind us of the awe-inspiring power latent within the earth, water, plants, and rocks that surround us. The Earth has seen it all. As Zeke Braman writes in his poem “Mountain”:
The footprints that have faded leave their story,
The birds have an article that they will share,
The trees have old legends
Of kings and queens and knights,
The ground has an account
The Earth holds and remembers our stories—in the form of fossils and artifacts, of course, but also in the landscape itself, which we have so drastically changed. We have transported plants and animals from their natural habitats to new ones. We have dug lakes and built mountains and created snow. And now, through climate change, we are causing fires to rage, oceans to rise, and storms to flood our cities. What “account” will the ground have of us in the next decade, the next century?
This month, I encourage you to explore the landscape around you—however ordinary it might seem—and to find the extreme, and also the beauty, within it.
Till next time,