in david suzuki‘s piece, forest temple, he and the kids went fishing. to get to the fish, they took logging roads and saw ‘a combat zone’. but then they entered the primeval forest, ‘a church … [that] was an entity far beyond our comprehension and was worthy of respect and veneration.’ is the forest and nature in general a church or a combat zone? making the connection is deciding not only which is holy and sacred, but also which is profane and evil.
the terrible beauty of blair braverman‘s story, ice and ashes, contrasts the immediate worship of a dead man with the forever of life ongoing: ‘a man lives his life, falls in love and marries and dies, only to be carried by a stranger across the alaskan wilderness. his ashes [packed in snow] would melt into the ice with the next rainfall, then creep downhill for a decade or more before calving into the sea in great white boulders.’ he concludes, ‘i thought about what makes us human, our shared truths, our deepest hopes, the peace that comes from understanding that we are not alone.’ image by dave brosha.