The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: The Last Glacier at the End of the World by Vivian Faith Prescott

Top Ten Signs of Climate Change

  1. My father tells a story of a severe winter that lingered through
    March: The earth shook; my cousin was swept away by a tidal
    wave. That winter, my father dug up a frozen sewer main by
    hand to unthaw it. Fishermen had a good salmon catch that
  2. I inhale too many mosquitos now.
  3. The salmon berries are rotten from the sun.
  4. The thimbleberries are rotten from the torrential rain.
  5. My father goes out trolling and doesn’t catch a salmon.
    My father goes out trolling again and doesn’t catch a salmon.
  6. We don’t eat shelled sea creatures: no crab, no cockles, no clams
    or geoducks. We know better.—Alexandrium species,
    Pseudo-nitzschia species, Dinophysis species.
  7. My sister’s ex sister-in-law is shot to death along with her
    teenage daughter and niece by my ex-husband’s new girlfriend’s
    ex-husband. He murdered them and then shot himself—and
    caused a heat sink scenario, the water bodies at the terminus
    acted as thermal energy and Shakes Glacier began to retreat.
  8. My father tells the story of working in the sawmill, of working at
    the Forest Service, of fishing for winter kings. He stares out the
    window of our fishcamp, at the 50 degree ocean, and imagines
    another story.
  9. Legend says my children’s ancestors travelled over ice. My own
    ancestors migrated over ice across Scandinavia after the Wind
    Man cleared a path with a shovel. I think about this legend. I
    invent words for our new oral tradition: neoglacialgenic,
    defishification, griefologic cycle.
  10. My normothermia is 101.6 degrees.

This selection comes from The Last Glacier at the End of the World, available from Split Rock Press. Purchase your copy here! Our curator for this selection is Nilsa Rivera.

Vivian Faith Prescott was born and raised in Wrangell, a small island community is Southeastern Alaska. She lives in Wrangell at her family’s fishcamp—Mickey’s Fishcamp. She holds an MFA from the University of Alaska and a PhD in Cross Cultural Studies from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She’s a founding member of Community Roots, the first LGBTQ group on the island. Prescott is also a member of the Pacific Sámi Searvi, and writes frequently about Sámi diaspora and climate change in Alaska. She is a two-time recipient of a Rasmuson Fellowship (2015, 2019) and a recipient of the Alaska Literary Award (2017). Prescott is the author of four chapbooks, two full-length poetry books, and a short story collection. Her work has been nominated for Pushcart Prizes and Best of the Net. Along with her daughter, Vivian Mork Yéilk’, she writes a column for the Juneau Empire called Planet Alaska. For more information, visit: Twitter: planet_alaska and poet_tweet.

Nilsa Rivera Castro writes about gender and diversity issues. She’s also the Managing Editor of The Wardrobe and the Non-Fiction Editor of Doubleback Review. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Huffington Post, 50 GS Magazine, Six Hens Literary Journal, Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies, Selkie Literary Magazine, and Writing Class Radio. She’s currently an MFA Nonfiction candidate at Vermont College of Fine Art and lives in Riverview, Florida.

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