The Earth That Holds Us

He used the rake as if a gondolier, pushing the long wooden pole out into the briny water until he drew its flat blade backwards, pulling white crystals free of the shallow pond. The salt pan glimmered and shone in the fierce September heat of Andalucía, its crusted white surface blindingly bright. Flamingos cut a … Continue reading The Earth That Holds Us

An Uncertain Country

To listen to an audio version of 'An Uncertain Country' click the play button To near the coast in April is to stray into uncertain country. At times a hot sun bathes the orange groves until they glow. Then the lashing rains return, hurled by the wind across the hills like ragged grey sheets. Mist … Continue reading An Uncertain Country

Faith in a Forgotten Place

"Where there are borders, there are bridges." I'd been researching a cross-border eco-tourism project on the Albanian side of the lake when Myrsini Malakou, director of the Society for the Protection of Prespa, suddenly said this during an interview. Her words crystalized for me a vague idea that I'd been carrying around throughout the time I'd spent in … Continue reading Faith in a Forgotten Place

The Light of Birds, Evros Delta

To listen to an audio version of 'The Light of Birds' please click on the play button. They're returning, wave after wave of them spilling over the delta of the Evros River. The sky is streaked with sharp-winged falcons, with storks whitening the meadows when they descend, with flocks of ibis that close like black umbrellas on … Continue reading The Light of Birds, Evros Delta

The Wonder of Ordinary Places

To listen to an audio version of 'The Wonder of Ordinary Places' click the play button. Many of the world’s landscapes are lost to us. They’ve vanished from our lives, become extinct. But they’ve disappeared not because of urban sprawl or the pressures of tourist development. They haven’t disappeared due to deforestation or a toxic accumulation … Continue reading The Wonder of Ordinary Places