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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 12, Number 2, June 2018
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Bruce Ross
Hampden, Maine, USA


Biodiversity

Starting a few summers ago, more and more I could not find the grasshoppers that signaled the season. Two winters ago I identified a variety of fox that was never recorded this far north. It was under our bird feeder. Overpopulation seems to be pushing species to extinction and warming trends are both erasing traditional feeding grounds and opening up new ones. The anthropologist and ethnobotanist Wade Davis in a collection of essays on travels in various worldwide natural landscapes returns again and again to biodiversity, as if to a kind of mantra, as if the lack of it is dismantling the natural world. Some older Japanese man once noted many years back that the seasons are no longer regular. For him, probably, this reflects a deconstruction of the traditional kigo. I am reading about the ”Flower World,” a synesthesia-like apprehension of the world in a higher state of consciousness, beginning with the Aztecs and proliferating upward to the Hopi. One wonders if such a state is possible now. I look up through the oldest New England tree at parts of the blue sky.

late summer clouds
sleeping in the birthplace
of Johnny Appleseed

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