Volume 4, Issue 5

Issue 5 of Volume 4 centers nature and the environment. The natural world is at times nurturing, at times dangerous. We, too, spring from our environment: how alike we are, and yet, how dissimilar.

Collage artist Kathy Bruce addresses some of those similarities in “Homage to von Humbolt,” imagining a fantastical portrait of the naturalist Alexander von Humbolt.

Similarly, in her untitled mixed-media artwork, Despy Boutris explores a relationship–to nature, to self, and to another–the excitement and fear that arises like wildfires.

Beth Copeland’s poems, “Owning a Hawk Feather is Illegal,” and “Lady Bug, Lady Bug, Fly Away Home,” also explore relationships through the lens of the natural world: how can we work together in this time of environmental crisis?

A small town in Tennessee must grapple with a young woman’s disappearance in Robert K. Pearcey’s woods-dark mystery, “The Disappearance of Sara Lang.”

Lastly, the lyrical “Cloudeater” by Srijani Ganguly follows a child with an independent streak and a strong curiosity about the world around him.

The Disappearance of Sara Lang | Fiction

“The first diver tumbled into the water with a loud splash. Two more followed. Greg wondered if the divers were afraid, swimming so far under the lake, lanterns falling across a gloomy landscape of decaying buildings. And ghosts. And, somewhere, Sara.”

Cloudeater | Fiction

“From time to time, he stopped and looked up, wondering what it would be like to actually be in space, see all that he had eaten today face to face. Would it be scary? Would he feel smaller and more insignificant than he already felt? Or would he want to stay there, floating in nothing, never wanting to return?”

Two Poems | Poetry

“Later, as I walk down the hill to the mailbox, I ponder
the meaning of those warnings, of black wings beating
against a common threat and wonder if we’ll ever learn
to work together to save our planet from destruction.”

Homage to von Humbolt | Visual Art

“What interests me most is the way in which the human body/anatomy corresponds to structures in nature, plants, trees, and the landscape. This can manifest itself either internally or externally in the form of patterns, designs, or metaphorical context; the subtle yet enchanting similarities between the inner life of plants, trees, and humans. What are humans if not plants, trees, and fungi, themselves made-up of organic material?”

Untitled | Visual Art

“Untitled. Mixed-media. Uses text, found images, tape, paint, and plant detritus to capture a feeling.”

Book Reviews

Interviews

Art & Photography

Two Abstract Paintings | Visual Art

Two Abstract Paintings | Visual Art

“Earth in Distress is an abstract fluid painting that I created, in order to symbolically emphasize the impact we have on our earth such as nature, wildlife, the gradual decrease in resources, as well as the relationships with each other as human beings; given the past several months of chaos we’ve endured together. I used an analogous color scheme with cool colors to represent land and sea along with black for contrast and balance. Each color was mixed with floetrol and water, poured into circular layered shapes onto the canvas, balanced for even distribution, and tilted back and forth to achieve the desired design.”

Easing Restrictions | Visual Art

Easing Restrictions | Visual Art

“I like the edge of things. Edge as in poignant and slightly threatening and edge as in interconnection. I like things that already exist. It’s not just about my ecological stance and the future but about mystery and the past. This piece, however, is really all about the now.”

COVID Lungs: A Trilogy | Visual Art

COVID Lungs: A Trilogy | Visual Art

“The first image, COVID 1, depicts the brewing storm driven by the wet-markets in China where trafficked animals are kept in conditions of bio-insecurity which were (and remain) ripe for zoonotic events. It depicts the warning by scientists from thirteen years ago that SARS emerged from these conditions and the next deadly pandemic will likely do so as well.”

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