eno Issue 4

Page 1

issue 4 | 2015

prose • poetry • photograph • a r1 t enoy magazine

Editors: Neil Matouka, Maria Klushina Senior Associate Editors: Genna Gomes, Ruxandra Popovici Associate Editors: Matthew Cicanese, Kara Grosse, Kati Moore Layout & Design: Kara Grosse, Kati Moore Faculty Advisor: Rebecca Vidra The printing of eno is generously supported by the Nicholas School of the Environment. Duke University Nicholas School of the Environment Durham, NC sites.nicholas.duke.edu/eno enosubmissions@gmail.com Printed by Barefoot Press Raleigh, NC www.barefootpress.com Printed on recycled paper with soy ink Cover Photo by Emma Biggerstaff

What is eno? eno gets its name from the Eno River in North Durham and from the Eno people, natives who occupied the land prior to European settlement. The name reflects our connection to the places we live, work, and play, and more broadly, to the Earth. To that end, we acknowledge the important work of the Eno River Association in preserving the natural and cultural legacies of the Eno River Basin and the thousands of organizations around the world that do similar work. Our Mission: To inspire a respect for our environment by engaging in thoughtful expression through the use of artistic, reflective and creative forms. This publication is available in electronic format at the website above. However, we believe print is a powerful and evocative medium, and so have chosen to print a limited number of this issue. When you’ve finished reading, please share this magazine with a friend.


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Photo by Ira Dorband

from the editors: This year, the Nicholas School of the Environment moved into our new home, the Environmental Hall - a gorgeous blend of contemporary aesthetics, environmental design and art. The building beautifully represents our relationship with the Earth. And like our new home, we believe it is our calling to promote and contemplate the environment through art. eno reaches into the soul of the environmentalist, the Nicholas School, the human and draws forth the appreciation of the sublime, the magic of reality and nature, the beauty of life. With each year, we are growing as a community. Like in nature, each year we are reborn and reshaped into something unique, building on the knowledge from the year before. Treasure this magazine; it contains the hopes, dreams, and aspirations of your fellow men and women. Neil Matouka and Maria Klushina

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Table of Contents Photography

02 04 06 09 10 12 14 15 16 18 22 25 26 28 30 32 34

Ira Dorband Megan Hayes Jessina Leonard Kendra Bridges Simon Pinter Ira Dorband Malinda Fillingim Lisa Tate Xavier Basurto Wout Salenbien James Rodgers Megan Hayes Ashley Conrad Elizabeth Hoerauf Wout Salenbien Wout Salenbien Belton Copp



Watercolor Paintings Julia Livermore

Essays and Short Stories

The Legend of Emergence Rock Zell McGee


Hanging Fog Corey Buhay


Running the Island Corey Buhay



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Photo by Megan Hayes


Holy Water Malinda Fillingim

A Poem Like a Prayer Is Someplace to Go Mary Hennessey

Winter-wrung Possibilities  Mary Hennessey

Reece Farm  Brenda Kay Ledford

06 07 10 11

Lullaby  Mark Smith-Soto


The Downstream Loop  Sam Love

Ghost Stumps & Blueberry Morning  Sam Love

The White Abalone Maya Cough-Schultz

Baby Pine Cones Dana Stone

Meditating in Marshall Gulch Maya Cough-Schultz

14 15 16

17 17

Sourwood Rick Jordan


Last Night, The Moon James Rodgers


Echo Nora Weatherby


The Old World’s Gone Laramie Graber


First Daffodil Jennifer Weiss

A Final Fall Mary Hennessey

24 24

Haikus Cakey Worthington, Christina Vucich, Paul Heine, Leslie Pardue, Nerine Constant


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holy water Malinda Fillingim Holy water rests in peace Sparkling from the sun that shines down On its translucent skin Still and calm, welcoming a troubled soul To stir things up I wade in the water, removing my clothes Inching my way down Covering my whole self with Liquid grace Until my lungs must wait to breath The leaves bow down as the wind blows Falling on top of me as I emerge Gasping for air, shaking my long wet hair Stretching my breasts toward the blueness Reaching for hope I cannot see Ripples surround me, currents cradle me Like a child who has fallen down Crying from pain and shame From not knowing how to run But not content to merely walk Holy water flows freely down the mountain Streams of silver on a journey To places I have yet to go Baptizing me as I stand bare under its umbrella Kissed by nature back to life.

Photos by Jessina Leonard


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a poem like a prayer is someplace to go Mary Hennessey A tower of crows Brylcream black all curves, edges feathered ineluctably. Each single bird teetering, an odd balance on the bird beneath like a circus clown on a ball moving in place. The architecture squawking kvetching a living Babel. The arc of their wing spans swells like the creek so full of itself after five inches of rain. Each bird wants to make eye contact and I can’t look away from this living avenue— that reaches for heaven where the bed sheets smell like fennel and all the rooms have ceiling fans, old and slow, and the kind of coffee God himself would start the day with if he knew where to find it.

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the legend of emergence rock Zell McGee

In the Hopi legend of creation souls in the underworld were allowed to emerge from the underworld by Taiowa, the god of Creation. Sometimes the creatures emerged through mesas. One such creature, on emerging from a mesa on the Box canyon road on Ghost Ranch, near Abiquiu, New Mexico, looked to the east and north and saw white man’s war-making activity, as well as man’s mistreatment of Taiowa’s creation. The creature was horrified and was undecided as to whether he wished to emerge into such a world. Taiowa’s impatient response was to turn the creature to stone at the point of his indecision. He is still there on the northeast side of the mesa across from the pond on box canyon road. You can see him illuminated by the morning sun (7:15AM in August) in the accompanying photograph. Because the legend has it that the spirit creature will continue his emergence as a human when white humans treat Taiowa’s creation and each other with care and respect, we can view Emergence Rock as a sign of all the work that needs doing and hope that some day there will be reports of a strange Indian walking out of Box canyon road . . . and Emergence Rock will be gone.


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Photo by Kendra Bridges

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winter-wrung possibilities Mary Hennessey 1 Near the blue window where the cold has left leaves hanging like wet dishrags pinned up with too few clothespins, one drifts off. 2 You tell me over coffee: “The dark was here first, before even an idea of light” and that “one of us could show signs of dementia and neither of us would notice.”


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3 The woman in my head— the one who has nothing and everything to say about the light, about Melville, about a silent oar in dark water— goes quiet. 4 The longleaf pines, this morning, like candles at high Mass— the creek’s pebbled shoulders bared for a nuptial celebration and now the resident heron glides wide-winged to that single spot where the creek is all sky and the yellow leaves run.

reece farm Brenda Kay Ledford Before the heat swelled, I strolled the poetry trail. Holly and ivy hugged the banks of Wolf Creek plunging from the virgin waters of Vogel Lake. A mourning dove cooed on Blood Mountain, evergreens perfumed a crisp breeze rustling the golden leaves of poplar trees overlooking Mulberry Hall: writing poetry, musing on an iron cot.

Along that trail appeared the double crib barn still containing the dignity of hard-working mountain folk. Fodder, pens for livestock, Dried mud crusted the plow, hams hung in the smokehouse.

Byron Herbert Reece heard the stories buried in the soil, carved rhymes from chips and chards resounding after the reach of song.

I caught the glow of chickens Perched on nests in the coop, Unfolded sings lifting to roost. Sunrays cut through looming clouds, a churn reflected in the spring house.

Photos by Simon Pinter

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lullaby Mark Smith-Soto Hush, now, my boy, hush now and sleep. Nothing is happening. How could anything happen? Those bears and wolves that stalk the house are shadows from a story book. We killed the last ones when we had to. We can still breathe, as long as we remain in here. The moon still rises and the sun still sets somewhere behind the cloud, even if the sea can’t rock them in its lap. True, the frogs that wove a canopy over our beds and tended our dreams lost their song long ago. That was us too. But you are safe listening to the silence outside where we can not go. Hush now, my boy, hush now. There are no monsters here but us.

Photo by Ira Dorband

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Poems by Sam Love

the downstream loop Sparkling in the sunlight the little plastic bag sails from the mindless driver’s hand to drift among roadside weeds. No one bothers to retrieve it, and on county mowing day whirring blades cut a grass swath shredding the bag into gossamer slivers. The next thunderstruck downpour carries the shreds through the watershed to the larger boiling stream, to the tidal marsh, to the Atlantic ocean.

Photo by Malinda Fillingim


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The Gulf Stream’s sun and waves pulverize the slivers into tiny bits creating a perfect culinary delicacy for large schools of filter feeders. Small fish that mistake plastic globules for aquatic eggs and plankton. Larger fish like Sea Trout and Tuna cut a swath through the schools and devour the tiny fish, concentrating the petrochemicals up the food chain. For dinner we purchase the wild-caught Tuna, let the fish monger filet the toxin-laden flesh, pack it in ice, and store it in a virgin plastic bag. A bag that completes the ecological cycle.

ghost stumps My laminate counters, dirty and cracking look like an obscenity of 1980’s chemistry. Once the pinnacle of kitchen style, they now look alien in a Southern Victorian lady, crying out for restoration. The house’s Heart Pine bones stand strong, a tribute to over 100,000 square miles of ancient Atlantic forests filled with trees that rose arrow straight hundreds of feet into the southern sky. Centuries of slow growth produced a steel hard wood impervious to mold, insects and rot, but not to the boiling water powering razor sharp blades. Natives respected the forest that sustained them, but white men simply saw product. Product yielding obscene profits from the iron hard lumber.

Lumber that built: wharves, factories, homes. In mere decades the ancient woods vanished, leaving only ghost stumps watched over by faster growing soft pine. Today the old mills constructed of Heart Pine sit silent until salvagers strip the hollow factories of “antique” boards, hard enough to create a kitchen counter for my Victorian.

Photo by Lisa Tate

blueberry morning It’s a January frost-free miracle stacked in my Carolina supermarket. A two-for-one blueberry sale so I add them to my shopping cart. Secure from the freaky outside cold the Chilean bleuets look perfectly cozy in their crystal clear plastic containers. They look so comfy, I wonder if they still dream of summer in South America. As I eat my morning oatmeal I ponder the adventure stories of this well-travelled fruit. Could it tell me about the toxic sprays that made it picture perfect? Was it picked by a shaker machine or by campesinos breaking their backs? How was its 4,136-mile plane trip from the Chilean farm to Florida? Did it enjoy its 869-mile truck trip up the interstate? How many miles per gallon does a Chilean blueberry get?

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the white abalone Maya Cough-Schultz And ode to living endangered species, because we can’t always mourn. Three decades on the sea shelf: The life of white abalone in the bay. They move on the order of meters. How well they know the waves. How well they know the kelp, deep green spools of film unwound, glowing in streaky light. A reeling field of trees flowing in parabolic paths. Like redwoods for others, they stand a hundred meters high— the ocean’s skin, their sky. Abalone watch from rocky perches— rock slightly back and forth taking part in the kelp’s mad dance. They wait for food to drift by, ascetic monks with begging bowls— confident the universe will provide. How well they know the silty shade, the hitch in breath when they draw in ocean-dust. The deep relief of clear currents rolling over scalloped shells, their lifeblood, their rain. They clasp pearly sides around the oldest secret: the deep contentment of holding everything in their shells.

Photo by Xavier Basurto 16

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meditating in marshall gulch Maya Cough-Schultz

baby pine cones Dana Stone “Today, I have grown taller from walking with the trees.” Karle Wilson Baker Baby pine cones grow up to be giant trees, like these, rising before me. Their crescent tops reach skyward and cascade down, almost covering the ground. Baby pine cones, green and brown, are scattered across my path. Along the way, runners pass by. Keeping time with each other, they run in unison. Approaching is a father and his young son, the boy’s wide gaze, absorbing the world before him. Tell me, please, what do you see? Your eyes dance with possibilities. Couples walk arm in arm, while I stop to rest on granite walls, where so many others have paused. I think, “I must live here someday.” For now though, I’ll discern the view. I’ve wandered East and Westward, too, and consider this the best of all, the life I see from grey stone walls.

When I sit still for long enough in the woods, I disappear— change shape as easily as in dreams. Become the maple picked out by light, branch tips curled like the fingers of a classical Indian dancer. I am the deep air that fills the canyon’s V from side to side, the white fir anchored in earth, holding up the sky, a silent giant with soft, feathered edges.

sourwood Rick Jordan “The Sourwood is a slow growing tree that has a slight curve to its branches.” – Blue Ridge Parkway interpretive trail sign I may have been expecting too much. I had you confused with a poplar. Poplars grow fast and straight and tall. One can build a home with poplars. But you are so slow to grow. Now, I know you’ll never be tall or straight. You’ll never stop in me my tracks with electric yellow leaves. You are developing a stoop, looking for a handrail, blaming the poplars for grabbing all the sun and space. Your leaves are rusting. I can wait. I can wait for you to bloom again this spring. I’ll watch the bees by-pass the poplars’ tulips for your nectar. Oh, the mountain delicacy they will make of it.

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last night, the moon James Rodgers

Last night, the moon came right in through my front door, so I offered him some tea. He was almost full, but agreed to a cup, because it was Jasmine Spice. I basked in the glow of his company and howled in delight at his brilliance. I asked him to stay, offering to make him breakfast, but he said he had to go, he had to be across the sky before morning. And with that, he disappeared through a window, but not without first thanking me for the tea.

Photo by Wout Salenbien


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echo Nora Weatherby One night the moon pulled the dark sky around her body so tight
 only the slightest hint of white
 peered out from behind the black veil. The sky was an ocean of migration and winged waves lapping hard
 at crystal constellations. “The trees must feel us touch them,” she said leaning against the dry oak bark. 
And the woods began to weep
 amber from their bark veins. Orion lay down his belt on the horizon. Two owls spoke of silence
 on dead branches by a pond.

One night the moon pulled the dark sky around her body so tight
 her eyelids closed and the night opened on the round earth. Every month she starts again
 new from where we stand
 but that moon is an echo in heaven.

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Watercolor Paintings _________________________________________________________________________________________________

BY Julia Livermore


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Photo by James Rodgers eno magazine



Laramie Graber


the new’s torn, ravaged. Small rivulets cross in swirling scars.

Dark, rich soil’s gone hardened clay remains.

Once proud and strong Trees lie uprooted.

He looks blankly Down a sheer cliff-face.

Lashing wetness stings are remembered. Now it drizzles mist coating the land.

Mixing with salt Running down cold cheeks. Thunder rumbles Fading to the distance.

Sunlight seeps in Stark against dark gray. It spreads slowly A calm, soothing white. Clouds start to fluff Their power leaving.


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Color’s arcing Red to violet.

Birds peek out heads Singing out all clears.

Newly awake Flowers flash brightly. Conjured by dreams Childish laughter lilts.

Quiet echoes Touch a place raw, buried.

first daffodil Jennifer Weiss

The first daffodil bloomed today. Brave yellow majorette, she peered awkwardly behind for other members of her troupe, and espied a cluster of emerald shoots beneath a barren tree. Perhaps tomorrow she will have company on her march towards spring.

A strangled cry Forces its way out.

He’s transported, White walls, lights flicker.

Weak hands, squeeze tight “Stay strong, little man.” A flash far-off Fury bringing light.

More green saplings In new-found sunshine. He looks up now Eyes finally clear.

Hands stop trembling He backs from the edge.

a final fall Mary Hennessey

A bumblebee hangs in the stunned air— a wash of tea olives and ginger lilies. A black swallowtail cruises not near enough. The mockingbird swings his hoe in a careful line and ivory butterflies spiral in tandem. The writer-spider, her summer crib of web, petal and gaze is empty now. She switches from vertical geometries to a cooler, more diffident prose strung between the beautyberry and moon vine. She writes— my bed is full and lacks nothing and beautiful, I feel that more than I did when I was.

Photo by Megan Hayes eno magazine


Photo art series by


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Ashley Conrad

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Writer Spotlight Short Stories by Corey Buhay

Photo by Elizabeth Hoerauf


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was interminable. The mist had reduced length of a sheppey (the weather‐dependent unit of measure defined as the minimum distance at which a flock of sheep appears picturesque) to a hand’s breadth. It was thicker than sheep’s wool and whiter than a newborn lamb, anyway; I could have had a face‐full of flock and not known it. I crept to the edge of Hanging Rock, gripping the slick, lichen‐covered stone with rigid fingers. I was six inches from death, yet blind to it. I couldn’t see anything. It was the kind of blindness that makes you hyper‐aware of your surroundings, the kind of terror that throws everything into sharp focus, making you painfully aware of just how alive you are. My friend Filip, who ventured to the edge despite his fear of heights, said not being able to see the distance made the elevation all the more terrifying. My feet dangled into the mist. I was enveloped in white. Above me there was nothing. Below me, nothing. Beyond me, nothing. John, a friend who’s hiked glaciers west of the Rockies, said the pervasive white was reminiscent of the snow‐ blown haze that could veil the scenery there. “It’s like being on the inside of a ping pong ball,” he said. John took a seat on the ledge. His loose shoelace dropped into the thick vapor, the tip of it swirling the mist and already beginning to fade. He took a bag of trail mix from his pack and picked out a dried papaya. “Don’t eat these – they taste like soap.” I took it from him and hurled it into the void. It spun away in an arc and vanished silently into the fog.

This was what it must look like when you die. Silent. Empty. Comforting in the close press of the woolly air. Terrifying. Exhilarating. Alive. Only when you’ve experienced death can you know how alive you were. There is no light without darkness; there is no life without death to compare it to. A stunted tree clung to the ledge behind us. From it darted a bird. It swept over our heads in a nose dive and plunged over the edge, spiraling down, braking with one wing at a time, a dark stain of ink on white tissue, dissolving in a milky pool. We watched it go. When it disappeared, the world was blank again. I could see tiny white specs floating through my vision. John said they were white blood cells cleaning up the area around the retina. Seeing them is a phenomenon called Flying Corpuscles. “Gnarly,” he said. “Just think – each one of those is a cell.” We spent a minute in silence watching them, tiny cells motoring around on the inside of an eyeball, tiny street cleaners keeping the way clear so that we could see the great big quantity of nothing in front of us. There was so much nothing to see that the inner workings of the eye had become visually manifest in front of us. There was so much nothing to crowd typically stimulated thoughts that they turned inwards: to life and death. Light. White blood cells. Fear. Filip had shuffled back from the edge and now stood behind me. I had agreed when he’d said it was more frightening not to be able to see the bottom. I agreed with him now when he said it was almost better that way: “It’s just as beautiful as if there was a view. It’s just a different experience.” eno magazine


Running the Island Corey Buhay

Photo by Wout Salenbien


lived in a small green shoebox. It was a windowless rectangular room painted like a lime with a singular light bulb and a tin roof.

It did have a door and its own shower spigot, which was more than the rest of my host family had. Ludys, Manuel, and their daughters, Lisseth and Luisa, all shared the other bedroom in the house, separated from the living and dining area by a curtain. For showers they had a plastic pail.

I had run earlier that day, and I was tired. I ran a lot while I lived on the island; there wasn’t much else to do after dinner for a penny-saving student uninterested in going to the discotech. Some of these runs were good.

I got special treatment because I was a study abroad student; in addition to paying the family for feeding me and talking to me in Spanish, the University was renting out the green room.

I jogged barefoot in the shadow of the Sierra Negra Volcano under a sunset red enough to make it seem active. I traced a cliff ’s edge and watched Frigate Birds glide by just ten feet from my face, regarding me out of the corners of their eyes. The water roared far below, smashing itself against the sheer promontory in reaching for my toes. I climbed a hiking trail, tripping over fat marine iguanas camouflaged on the dark rock. Once I was chased by a territorial male sea lion on a beach at night.

Rain dripped outside, and I heard humming insects and barking dogs. I could not shake the humidity from my clothes. It clung to the threads like cigarette smoke, but this time I liked the smell.

This last time, I was out hunting for the Milky Way. I found myself overlooking the water, across the bay from the port. The clouds kept my eyes on the twinkling city lights rather than on the stars. Lit-up


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boats looked like pieces broken off from the sparkling mainland. The waves’ landward facets caught the gold and rocked it gently from side to side. Most people think of the Galapagos as a paradise, an untouched wonder of the world full of flowers and finches and giant tortoises roaming free. When friends ask me about the beauty I must have seen there, I admit to the flourishing hibiscus and orange trees, but I’m wary about calling it paradise. The islands are a bit of a mess. On the wall of the university lab hang photographs of an illegal shark finning operation. In them, hundred of shark carcasses lie stacked on the deck of the impounded ship, slack-jawed and bleeding. There were problems on shore, as well. One of the marine biologists noted that sea lions got better healthcare than the people on the island. A grad student who worked in the lab next door studied fecal contaminants in the drinking water. The islanders want amenities, resources, and education. They want more tourists to increase business even though there isn’t even enough fresh water on the islands for the expanding population of residents. They want to have dogs and cats even though their pets eat iguana hatchlings. They want to keep chickens so they don’t have to import expensive meat from the mainland, but chickens spread diseases to the finches. The National Park and the people are at odds. Most of the time I went running, I ran through town. Roosters scratched at the gravel-filled cracks in the road. Stray dogs stalked my heels. Tiny shirtless children played in the dirt while their mothers called them in rapid Spanish, shouting over the sounds of bad soap operas and clattering dishes. Most of the homes sported naked cinder block and twisted rebar. Laundry hung from the iron skeletons of uncemented columns. Tax breaks for buildings labeled “under construction” meant these would never be finished. I crawled out of my shoebox at midnight to refill my water bottle from the blue five -gallon jug in the

kitchen. My host family’s miniature poodle, Ludiño, woke up and sat in the dark, looking at me and wagging his sleeping tail. Moonlight fell in white palm fronds across the belly of a rusty propane tank in the corner. The dog tether pulled against a crack in the weakened metal. I folded my legs into the corner between his box and the door to my room, and soon had a heap of puppy asleep in my lap. He was clean again, I noticed. Ludys must have scrubbed him twice a day to keep him so spotless, particularly since he escaped and bounded through piles of loose volcanic dust and brambles at least once every afternoon. Fortunately he was a good sport about baths, just as he was about getting pummeled by Lisseth and threatened with Ludys’s flip flop if he was under the table at dinnertime. I sat in the floor, playing with the curly down on his neck and ears, watching the world sleep on the other side of the screen door. The moon was so bright the sky is deep blue rather than black, and the leaves were silhouetted against it. The cinderblock buildings and rusty roofs, laundry lines and netless basketball hoops, boulders and twigs and heaps of rusting auto parts all cast gentle in moon shadows. I could hear Manuel come in the front door after his usual 12-hour shift. He captained a water taxi, boating merchants and tourists from their larger boats to dock in the shallow port. Ludiño kicked in his sleep. I could hear the radio coming in muffled from the house next door. It played American pop music interspersed with gruff Spanish commentary. The auto-tuned voice of Katy Perry was fractured by Manuel’s snoring.

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Mountains to Sea________________________________________________


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Cakey Worthington Topographic bliss... Crags to plains to blue abyss. Let us find the trail.

Christina Vucich Nature’s soft heartbeat Mountain whispers to the Sea and both fall asleep

Paul Heine Rock weeps lake is born water drops steep canyon rise ocean lies in wait

Leslie Pardue Beside the Eno Walking a white blazed tail My hope was renewed

Nerine Constant From mountains to sea tannic leaf to salty hue flowing green and blue

Photo by Wout Salenbien

Photo by Wout Salenbien eno magazine 33


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Tripp Burwell in Oceana rapid, Tallulah Falls, Georgia Photo by Belton Copp

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