Winter / Spring 2020
Letter from the Editor
Thank you for taking the time to read the works of creative and academic writing in addition to the artwork that we have gathered here.
I initially drafted a letter about how we have been turning to reading, writing, and the arts as a tonic to the isolation of socially distant times, necessitated by the Covid-19 Pandemic. But the tragic killing of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and too many others, has made it clear that there is another crisis that urgently demands our attention and action. It also demands our words. At Clamantis, we condemn violence against the black community—the recent police brutality but also the long history of systemic violence dating back to the founding of this country. Moving forward, we will look for ways to further elevate black and brown voices in our community—an academic community with an exclusionary past it is still struggling to overcome.
As writers and artists and students, this is a reminder that our journal must be critical—a place where we name the ills of our society and analyze them. And it must also be creative: our work is also to imagine our world anew.
The pieces in this edition examine the difficulty of existence and moments when this difficulty tips over into loss—a daughter who cannot accept the death of her mother, the irreversible depletion of the world’s sand, the coopting of ancient knowledge by the neoliberal order. But as a collection, these pieces also speak to the potential joy in our existence: the renewal of the seasons reflected in a park bench after a springtime rainfall, the crust of a loaf of freshly baked bread, the immensity and tranquility of the stars overhead as life on the earth continues, in perpetuity, to change. These pieces are deeply interested in the natural world and the place humans occupy in it.
These authors didn’t know what the coming months held in store. They were just trying to convey something true about human experience, and that is what we have to offer to you in these pages.
Words are a way of finding connection, when we are in our homes during a quarantine and when we take to the streets with cardboard signs. They are a way of calling for change where it is desperately needed.
We are grateful to the writers and editors for generously offering their work to make this edition of the journal possible during unprecedented times and under unprecedented conditions.
The production of this journal would likewise be impossible without our faculty advisor Anna Minardi’s unwavering support and guidance. Thank you, Professor Minardi, for being a constant champion and friend of this journal.
We hope that you enjoy this edition of Clamantis.
When the Baker’s Bread Breaks
Sometimes in Spring
Every Journey Begins with the First Step
Timothy Poisson and Dom Bull
The humblest of them all
Calling the Stars Home
The Owl Outside Our Window