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Gone Back to Wild

Gone Back to Wild
By John Brantingham

Moving to western New York from California has been like a homecoming to me. I love the High Sierra, and I love the Mojave Desert, but these places have always felt exotic. We moved to our new home just ahead of a late February snow storm a few years ago, and we were racing early to keep in front of the snow. It was dawn as we drove across the state line, and I could see reeds along the banks of a creek off the side of the road. I felt a profound sense of belonging. I am filled with radical, overwhelming wonder whenever I am a part of the wild. I’m filled with that and a deep sense of belonging in these woods. There’s no way to explain that emotion exactly. I hope to do so inexactly in this collection.
—John Brantingham


John Brantingham is the recipient of a New York State Arts Council grant and was Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks’ first poet laureate. His work has been in hundreds of magazines and The Best Small Fictions 2016 and 2022. He has twenty-two books of poetry, nonfiction, and fiction. He is the editor of The Journal of Radical Wonder.
Ann Brantingham is a nature artist focusing on local flora and fauna. Her work, featured at the Chautauqua Art Gallery, the dA Center for the Arts, The Sasse Museum, and the Progress Gallery, explores leaves and other natural elements in graphite on a small scale in order to experience the physicality of a branch or single leaf. Her hope is that through experiencing the environment around them, people will see that we have more similarities than differences and that through nature, we can find our peace. You can see her work at annbrantingham.com.