For the past week, I’ve been flipping through our newest issue of Camas rereading the stories, essays, and poems and admiring the photos within. This issue is the capstone to my time as Camas editor and grad school career. It’s the product of countless unpaid hours, the cause of sleep deprivation, and something I am tremendously proud of.
This issue, for the first time in Camas’ 25 years, has more women’s voices and art than men’s. Diane Raptosh, former Boise poet laureate, questions our idea of culture and language in her “Call It, Once More, A River.” Member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribe, Heather Cahoon, graces our pages with her “Horsefly Dress” using her native language to dissect the power of a name. Daqi Chen, a junior in high school, has her first ever published photo in these pages: “One of Kind.” And the natural deconstruction in Daniella Sforza’s “Fluvial Sands” still awes me with how well it fits the poem its paired with. The men have some pretty amazing pieces of work in the issue too.
In this issue, like the last, we tried to combine those images and works of traditional nature writing (the beautiful plants, rivers, and natural features around us) and the more common nature that surrounds us today (culverts diverting waterflow, cabins that allow us to escape into wilderness comfortably, and dried-up river beds that are becoming more and more frequent with a warming climate).
We forgot to put our theme on the cover before printing, but the image there by photographer Michael Anthony displays it perfectly. The snaking green surrounded by arid land is the story of rivers in the West. And the ability to take an aerial shot of it is a part of our new story.