kaylakwest

Joined: Sep 08, 2020 Last Active: Oct 27, 2020

Consider this: if learning to embrace the complexity and the differences in our ecosystem can lead to greater understanding of the space around us, do we not have an obligation to try? This sentiment is not unique, it is simply one that continues to be glossed over for more glamorous solutions. In fact, looking back at the work of Aldo Leopold, it is clear that the ethical relationship between man and land has been a struggle for at least a century.

While I am not a botanist, I spend my life studying the art of telling a story. By this, I mean that all writing tells stories of what we value and how we believe others should see the world. I always claim that each piece of writing is an argument. My interest in moss stems from a sentimental understanding of the complexities of bryophytes. However, this extends to my passion for the stories that nature tells. If we take some time to understand the complexities of something, then we are drawn to preserve it. As an amateur in the field, I am motivated by a few sentiments:

"We must never forget the forest under our feet" -Dale Kruse

"Keyboards should be tapped by those with soil under their fingernails and wilderness in their heads" - Paul Kingsnorth

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe." - John Muir

By day I teach writing and rhetoric. In addition to that, I try to find the stories in the plants. Yes, they tell stories. They speak of resilience, community, and sacrifice. They speak of beauty and ruin. We have to understand their stories. Why? Because narrative grounds our experience. Experience informs our truth. Truth is what binds us together or pushes us apart.

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