For nearly 24 hours now, several Lebanese villages south of Beirut have been on fire.

Wildlife, trees, homes, cars, people — burning.

But where are the headlines? The massive donations? The hashtags?

When people realized the Amazon was on fire, you couldn’t watch American television or scroll Facebook for two minutes without encountering some form of vitriol. The burning of Notre Dame moved billionaires and you-and-me’s alike to throw money toward its restoration. …

Dressed in mismatched patterns and vibrant colors, my friends and I exited the subway platform into what felt like a parallel universe.

Mermaids, everywhere.

It was the Coney Island mermaid parade — a New York City tradition of sorts. Every summer solstice, the nutty, nautical side of the city shows itself in a celebration of art and culture. The southern end of Brooklyn was brimming with people excitedly snapping photos of glittery get-ups, Nathan’s hotdogs, and amusement park rides.

After the parade crowned its mermaid of the year, many of the thousands of people in attendance flocked toward the beach…

Perhaps no country on the planet can rival Iceland’s cornucopia of natural wonders. Its harmoniously dichotomous landscape — fiery volcanoes and numbing glaciers, sublime peaks and sunken valleys— now invites tourists and Instagram likes in the millions each year.

But before the rest of the world opened its eyes to the country’s irrefutable allure, Icelandic poets were already penning their island’s sui generis beauty.

And they continue to do so today.

This compilation of poetry highlights some of my favorite examples of natural imagery in Icelandic works. Thank you to Bernard Scudder for his stunning translations.

Poem to the Sun…

It is often said that nothing — or nobody — can ever be perfect.

That is one of humankind’s greatest lies.

Everything on this planet, and everything in the universe as we know it, is perfect.

It is perfect because it is.


And beautifully.

From the tiniest zooplankton to the mighty blue whale; from wildflowers to redwoods; from grains of sand to the Grand Canyon; the Earth is teeming with perfection.

Even what we perceive as imperfections are only so in our minds. …

Climate change solutions come in two forms: mitigation and adaptation. While many proposed techniques focus on one or the other, some offer the benefit of slowing the global rise in temperature while adapting to now inevitable impacts. One such solution has been around for thousands of years.

Forests, farms, and the future

Silvopasture, the ancient practice of combining timber and livestock production, is an effective way to reduce methane emissions from livestock while diversifying farmers’ incomes. Silvo comes from the Latin word for forest, so the term literally means forest-pasture. But what does that look like?

Imagine you have a pasture: maybe some cows, sheep…

On International Women’s Day, a celebration of a few women who have fought to preserve our natural environment and all who depend on it.

Winona LaDuke

Winona LaDuke is the founder of the White Earth Land Recovery Project, a mission to retrieve 837,000 acres of land for its native owners. She also leads Honor the Earth, a nonprofit organization working on creating awareness and support for Native environmental issues. She continues to advocate for renewable energy and sustainable development.

Tanya Fields

A poem

My mind

Replete with jittery pests

Finds stillness in the oddest

Of places

Ancient piles of past

Bygone bivalves

And reefs restrained to records

To know they have been here for thousands of years

Before me

And will remain long after I am gone

But I can know neither

Only the nonce

The now

The never-to-be-met-again

And so my mind

In its benthic bath

Lets float away

Mistakes that cannot be undone

And that have not yet been made

Some time in history

A boat must have anchored where my gaze lands

A shark must have swam where I sit

The forgotten victim of Fyre Festival

Photo: Fyre Media

Last week, two new films documented the rise and fall of the now-infamous Fyre Festival, a failed attempt by entrepreneur Billy McFarland and rapper Ja Rule to host a luxury music festival in the Bahamas. And while the films make it clear that locals and other employees are now feeling the pain of McFarland and Ja Rule’s ineptitude, there is one victim of the debacle who goes unnoticed in the newly engaged public conversation: nature.

Paradise is more than palm trees

Initially, the creators of Fyre Festival envisioned the bash would take place on…

Musician Pharrell Williams has recently taken a Leo-esque foray into climate change advocacy, using his influential platform to call for better protection of the planet.

There’s just one problem.

Pharell’s songs include what many claim are misogynistic lyrics. And you can’t be pro-environment without also being pro-women.

From rhymes to climes

Last year, the hit producer debuted a new song titled “100 Years” to a super-select group of 100 people. The rest of us will have to wait 100 years — at which time the disastrous impacts of climate change are expected to take center stage if we perpetuate inaction…

smooth, soft-centered

sweet-then-sour serpent.

will I never learn?

rounded, ripened

rinded ruler of rues

subject of my yearn

gilded guise

of greenish grains

see me as I roam

bitter, biting

belligerent beauty

carry me back home

Amanda Brown

Full-time storyteller, part-time fruit connoisseur // More at

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