Wild Greens

Volume 4, Issue viii

Open Call (The Garden Issue)

Wild Greens 4, no. 8 (June 2024)

Open Call (The Garden Issue)

Welcome to the June 2024 issue of Wild Greens

Do you have a key to our secret garden? Climb over the ivy or simply walk through the garden gates. Welcome the Garden Issue, which sprang from an open, themeless call to plant a seed of creativity and see how it grows. 

Despite our non-theme, several themes clearly emerged as we put the final touches on this issue: grown things, innocence, knowledge, first loves, symbiosis, the cycle of nature and rebirth, and this great big beautiful world that we share with so many other humans, creatures, and plants.

Hannah Birss begins her poem “Mob Mentality” by setting us in a place of symbiosis; a garden tended and nurtured to welcome the fireflies in. “Ladder” in pencil by Afra Ahmad beckons us to climb up to the treehouse. “The Genius of the Place,” the first of two poems by Ben Nardolilli, searches for gardens as places of respite.

Lauren Kimball is back this month with a brand new Turtle and Hare. “World Turtle” references the philosophy of infinite regress; in other words, “turtles all the way down.” “World Turtle” also celebrates—you guessed it…World Turtle day!

“Rumble in the Jungle” by Amelia Díaz Ettinger is a coming-of-age story exploring girlhood and curiosity about biology. 

“Puddling,” by Lynne Marie Rosenberg in ink, graphite, and marker, depicts a strange ritual of the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterfly males. “Garden Poem” by Amelia Díaz Ettinger finds peace in the garden.

Irina Tall (Novikova)’s “Sometimes we can only dream” in ink and gouache finds a green-eyed woman mixed with birds, forest, and wings, mingling the unreal world of dreams with the mundane world of reality.

Ben Nardolilli’s second poem in the issue, “Number Letter Period” contrasts the horrifying reality of screens, news, and atrocities with the imaginary gardens of our creative minds.

“Spring Upon Us,” a poem by Elke Hasselmann is inspired by the coming of spring in the author’s hometown of Winnipeg, Canada, and the memories of girlhood: going outside in flowing dresses and creating fairy gardens. Five images by Jessica Furtado created using digital photography and prisms, "Dreamboat," "Cross Your Heart," "Camouflage," "Blue Moon," and "Better Than Diamonds," create kaleidoscopic visions of nature.

“Garden Gifts,” a short story by Scottie Robinson, compiles observations that the author has made about her garden. In “Through the Fields” in gouache by Melissa Lomax, the artist experimented with traditional modes of painting to create a colorful garden.

“Bug Boy,” a short story by Bran Winkler takes place in a lush natural setting and focuses on the sweet early stages of love between two boys. “Colorful Sunset” in acrylics by Angela Patera depicts that moment of the first start of summer, a beach sunset. “Take Me to the River,” a poem by Holly Rose evokes the barefoot days of summers past and yet to come.  

Start your summer off right. Stay in our garden as long as you like.


If you like the issue, you can donate to Wild Greens through our Ko-fi page!

Mob Mentality

by Hannah Birss

My neighbors remarkwith jealousy upon the firefliesflitting through my raspberry patch,and speaking gratitude in Morse:Thank you, thank you, thank you.
They ask me my secret and I tell them—Do not do anythingthat would disrupt the solar chainthat flows from sky to soil.Plant the pollinators, beckon to bats,let nature live as it intends.
They scoff, and insteadof bringing out the pitchforksto churn the compost,they light the torchesthat burn away the medicine.They pull at their hair with envy,and then tear up their weeds.
I sit in my gardenand weep with with the insectsthat would flock to the foodand the flowers that need them.


by Afra Ahmad

Shading pencils

The Genius of the Place

by Ben Nardolilli

We heard gardens and tried to reach them, wonderingIf it was only an echo of our apprehensionAs we confronted the time going by on its carousel of atrocities
At night, we continued, unsure of which outlines to follow,One might hold a verdant escapeOr a path into the wild contours of lurking forests
In sleep, we set the struggle aside, to huddle and shareRelief from the day’s valorous swimThrough hostile patches of land and noxious halos of headlines
With new sun stains, we seek again, the safe maze,The quiet shaded relief of a gazebo, A place where we are safe enough to ask how things are going

World Turtle

by Lauren Kimball

Digital stylus

Inspiration: The comic celebrates Word Turtle Day (May 23) with a reference to the Cosmic Turtle and the philosophy of infinite regress.

Rumble in the Jungle

by Amelia Díaz Ettinger

Finally, she closed the book, laid it on the table, and walked out the door. She was careful to leave it as she found it; going into Papi’s room was a breach of trust, but opening his anatomy book to find out about male genitalia was a cardinal offense, punishable by the Three Belts: Papi and the two uncles, los tíos, who felt the need to contribute to Sol’s ‘education.’

You would think that living with three men, she would know something about what was down there. But she didn’t. She was clueless, tan inocente e ignorante como un ángel. The three fathers seemed to equate innocence with ignorance. The former she didn’t mind, but being ignorant made her feel like a donkey. Like when they talk about Nixon and she asks for clarification and the three fathers would look at her but never answer. Papi always felt bad for the President. Paco, the oldest, wanted juridical justice, and Moisés, the youngest, wanted the President to be protected by the laws of the land. Whatever that was. But today, Sol was tired of feeling protected about the taboo subject of sex and wanted some clarifications.

The first hint she had that there was something even different down there was when the four of them went to El Yunque, and they stopped at a secluded hillside to relieve themselves. She was the first out of the car but the last one back. They’d all laughed, a bit too nervously, when she asked them how they could pee so fast and not get their panties wet. 

“She is so sweet,” was Tío Paco’s pronouncement, which made her feel like a donkey not understanding what goof she had made this time.

However, now that she was on the cusp of turning twelve, she needed some answers. She wanted concrete visual images to answer all her questions about the difference between males and females. She could see women had big breasts, but men didn’t. Unless you were fat like Tío German—he had tetas almost as big as his wife. But the male arrangement down there was still a capital mystery. In her mind, as well as her panas, María Teresa and Luisa, this was more important and interesting than who was going to win the fight: George Foreman or Muhammad Ali. They wanted to see that fight, sure, but this was a more pressing matter to them that defined the difference between innocence and ignorance.

“My bet is on Cassius Clay,” Sol had announced when asked but was corrected. He no longer answered to this name.

“Muhammad Ali,” Luisa had said with an air of superiority.

That was last week at the pajama party when they poured their curiosity about anatomy over the nine-year-old 1965 Life magazine issue. That particular issue was banned in the neighborhood. Taboo.

“Mira esa porquería,” was the sentence passed by the matrons in the barrio. “I won’t keep it in my house.”

The controversy is from the revelatory and quite explicit photos of a baby’s birth. Though the girls by now knew babies weren’t delivered by la cigüeña, they had had debates about how it came out.

“The doctor cuts a hole through the bellybutton of the mom,” María Teresa had suggested before seeing the photos in Life. Though all three had felt unsure at that explanation, they agreed the doctor took the baby from the stomach. And the other question about how the baby got there was another story, also fraught with a lot of hullabaloo.

“No, the baby starts by the papá putting the seeds inside the mom, as Father Miguel said at the retreat last fall. The father has the seeds for the next generation, and the mother is like a flower taking the seed and making the fruit.” Sol said in her ‘I know more than you’ voice. Luisa was offended.

“Not possible. If that were the case, Mami wouldn’t be expecting another baby. She is old, there is no way Papi would put the seed inside her. HE doesn’t want any more kids!” Luisa had a solid, compelling argument that defeated Sol’s and Father Miguel’s.

The three girls were shocked into fits of nervous giggles when they finally had a chance to look at the magazine photos during the party. They had waited until María Teresa’s parents were sound asleep before they took out the copy and read it with a flashlight under the covers. Who would have guessed that babies came out from down there?

“I don’t think I want to have kids now,” said Luisa, and all three girls agreed.

“I think I’m going to get sick,” María Teresa added, and all three girls agreed again.

“I can’t look at these pictures anymore. Sol, you take it home and hide it. Your Papi won’t be looking in your stuff like Mami does. You keep it and maybe we can look some other time.”

“Yeah, you take it, Sol, my mom would find that magazine and in a second she would grab her chancleta,” Luisa added.

So, it was up to Sol to keep the worn magazine hidden from the eyes of her fathers. Easy task. Unlike her friends, Sol’s fathers would never break the sacrosanct privacy of her things. She didn’t know if they didn’t snoop because they trusted her, or they were afraid to find things that might be difficult to discuss. Like menstruation and brassieres.

Papi’s anatomy book had been a great disappointment, it didn’t reveal anything illuminating about down there. However, there was a picture of an aboriginal dude with this thing spreading a few meters between his legs. The text, however, had been in English and she could understand only every other word. Instinct told her that the photo was not a normal condition. But she learned that the thing was called a penis. Yet, the size could not be real. The fathers’ have taken her enough times to Luquillo Beach and wore swimming trunks. If they had that thing down there, well it would have been obvious. The book, after all, was called Aberrant Conditions and Their Causes.

Sol wished she could read more of the text and swore to the Blessed Mother that she would pay more attention in Sister Michon’s English class. She hated English. English was strange and difficult, and she didn’t see the point of learning a language with so many consonants that no one around her used anyway, except the tourist. In Turabo, there were no tourists, and when visiting San Juan, she was not to talk to any of them. So, what was the point? Though Sister Michon had said that, eventually, there would be no more Spanish on the island. “Your kids and your kids’ kids will all be Anglophones,” she had pronounced in class and Sol had been skeptical and raised her eyebrow. She wasn’t sure that was a good thing. But it would have been handy to know enough English to make sense of the medicine tomes Papi had in his room.

Picking up her princess phone, she called María Teresa. María Teresa was the only one in the clan, like herself, without a party line. A small advantage of having fathers who were physicians. They needed the privacy of a direct line. Telegraph ladies were known to snoop in conversations. Sometimes even interrupting chats with unsolicited advice. And this conversation needed to remain a secret.

“Well?” María Teresa answered instead of saying, “Hola.”

“Nada, nadita, nothing.”

“Well, your Papi or your Tío Moises must have another textbook.”

Peep-squeak could be more than annoying sometimes.

This is how they devised the plan. They needed to find the boys’ gang of Mario, Julio, and El Payaso unaware. It was a daring plan. The girls in town (by the mysterious convention of town rules. Those rules that dictated the segregated behavior of the population) were forbidden to go to the river. With its slimy rock bottom and schistosomiasis threat, it was out of reach for them. No swimming or fishing in the river unless chaperoned by a court of adults that needed to include at least three adult male relatives. Not even the old tías were to be found alone at the river.

Much to their chagrin, the girls knew that this rule didn’t apply to the boys. The guys went to the river. They pretty much went everywhere without a chaperone. El barrio was theirs to roam, free of gossip. And el Río Turabo was theirs every Thursday, right after their basketball practice (boys also had sports in clubs after school, another one of those mysterious rules; if you were a girl, you needed to be feminine, and feminine girls avoided sports).

The plan was simple. Sol, María Teresa, and Luisa needed to tell a little lie about their whereabouts. They told their families that they were going to each other’s houses. Sol had no problems; the fathers didn’t get home from the court and the hospital until way past her bedtime. And Esperanza, the housekeeper, was too tired to care.

“When they get into the water, we can steal their clothes and hide them. That way, when they come out of the river, we can get a good look.”

The plan was simple and thrilling. Though, Luisa complained that it wasn’t very exciting or imaginative. Hadn’t they seen something similar in a movie? But since she couldn’t come up with an alternative. They decided to go for it.

The girls sat behind the lava rock that looked like a sitting dog, which was crawling with lizards. The boulder offered a good hidden spot where they could hear the guys clearly.

“What the hell are they talking about?” whispered Luisa.

“The fight and the basketball game,” Sol whispered back, “Next week it’s the United States versus España, right here in el Coliseo, Tío Moisés wants to take me.”

“I hope Spain wins,” said Luisa. She loved anything from that country and still had family there, though she was as Boricua as the rest of them.

“Who cares,” added Maria Teresa. She hated anything about sports.

“How boring,” said Sol, grabbing one of the lizards off the rock. Anolis krugi, she thought, one of her favorites.

Sol peeped over the rock still holding the lizard. She could see the brown-blond hair of el Payaso gleaming with water as he splashed around like the clown he was.

“My bet is one hundred to fifty. The USA will beat Spain by double.”

“Pal Carajo, no fucking way.”

The boys, unaware they were being watched, were cussing up a storm.

“I think it is time,” Sol said to her friends. But she felt sick. How was she going to confess this sin? She looked at her friends. María Teresa looked nervous but excited. Luisa, however, was chewing the ends of her braid, a clear sign she was freaking out. The day was cloudy and a bit cold, and María Teresa passed three flashlights to them.

“Now, when the boys get out of the water, use these and aim the light at the target.”

Sol burped and tasted bile. She wasn’t as interested in finding out what was down there as she thought. What they were doing was wrong. Now she felt sick, really, really sick.

“I think I’m going to vomit,” she managed to say before puking all over Luisa’s sandals.

“¡Cabrona!” Luisa screamed, which, of course, alerted the three boys in the water.

“¿Quién anda ahí?” El Payaso’s voice sounded nervous.

The girls gathered their stuff quickly and dashed. They knew that the boys in the water could not only see them but would instantly know who they were if they saw even a hair.

“Mierdita,” Luisa shouted before erupting in a fit of giggles.

They reached the Betances intersection where the large guanabana tree stood, and all three placed their hands on the trunk to catch their breath.

“I guess I’m relieved I didn’t see Mario’s stuff,” María Teresa said between bouts of mellowing laughter.

“Or El Payaso’s,” offered Luisa.

“Yuck,” all three agreed.

“I guess innocence can be bliss.”

“But never ignorance,” the three shouted and shook hands before leaving for each other’s houses; their rebellion paused for a moment from an unnatural fill of remorse.


by Lynne Marie Rosenberg

Ink, graphite, marker

Inspiration: In March, I took a vacation to Asheville, NC, and only took one photo the whole time: an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail and a bunch of Spring Azure butterflies feasting on feces. I was fascinated by the behavior (which I later learned is called "Puddling" and is done exclusively by males to collect amino acids and other mineral nutrients) and further curious about what happens when you turn the eye of creation on subjects to which we have ascribed cultural judgment. Poop: gross. Butterflies: beautiful. But here they are, symbiotic, neutral. To capture the moment in a drawing, I, too, have to be symbiotic and neutral in how I sit with the image. 

Garden Poem

by Amelia Díaz Ettinger

sometimes I hate to pullthe weeds—who am I to saywho is the alien and what is the fruit
but the kale needs breathand I hunger for the flavor,impatience is my nature
but not today, todayI’m surrounded by the buzz of honey bees,
and sunlight bites my thighs,like a playful lover wouldreclining on this bed 
that smells of dirtand green of impending joyI call to this phantom paramour
meet me in the center green crown me with the uprooted leavesstay here for surrender

Sometimes we can only dream

by Irina Tall (Novikova)

Ink, gouache, paper

Inspiration: Sometimes our dreams are too vague to come true.

Read about the inspiration for this month's logo on Ko-Fi.

Number Letter Period

by Ben Nardolilli

The top stories of the week hammer away at me, I wish I could see the ads and block the atrocities, I surviveby scrolling in a fetus position and ignoringoffers to read more, each picture remains stuck in an error,while every headline tries to rule me on demand
As my overall capabilities continue to degrade, offers for books, E- and otherwise burrow through the inbox,they mount and pretend to be the answer,a distraction from the carousel of distress that keeps playingacross the continents and grinds on day and night
They assume too many good things about me,plus some bad, plenty of focus and free unemployed time to roam over the unread pages and take in lines,then tell the authors and publishers how I wish I could liveembedded in their wonderful imaginary worlds

Spring Upon Us

by Elke Hasselmann

The spring brings the smell of damp wood and the resurgence of childhood, my girlhood. The forgotten ideals and imagination once held within my mind bloom again wildly like a tulip after the first rain, reaching for sunlight from deep within the soils it laid to sleep under heavy snow.  
Under bare feet, I feel the wet Earth beneath my toes. Withered orange and brown leaves nourish the dirt below. I feel a restless rush in belief of nature anew. 
And suddenly, yet again, I am ten, Running with the rising sun on my brow and warm wind carrying the first-morning dew, landing upon my eyelashes.  
Through a hallow filled with pixie dust and ponds of ducklings, I remember a flowing gown and long and unkempt hair, holding a myriad of rose petals. 
When spring arrives, I am reminded I can dance in my room with my window open and the promise of warmth that blossoms one’s inner child. 
The wind whispers secrets from years ago, a voice, a call I remember from a version of myself I cannot recall until the rebirth of spring. 
When orange lilies swarmed by milkweed, sprouting under the tall oak I would climb in bare feet and a dirt-lined Cinderella nightgown to seek the Robin’s nest filled with blue eggs.
I cannot see her, a version of myself never to be again, yet she always calls our name once the sweetgrass grows again. The awakening of spring brings new life and old memories. Shall we go to the garden of tulips and magnolias’ to be children again? Together?
The nostalgia spring brings is a recollection of curiosity and adventure, a reminder that all will breathe the sweet air once more, And ever so slowly, as withered branches burst with green, I remember that I can exist again with childlike bewilderment and possibility.  
I dance on sun-warmed soil with a belly full of wild strawberries and sweet lemonade, All this loveliness because the sun shines down and melts our cold snow and frigid bones to bring forth new life.  

"Dreamboat," "Cross Your Heart," "Camouflage," "Blue Moon," and "Better Than Diamonds"

by Jessica Furtado

Digital photography, prisms

Inspiration: The flowers in these photos come from the gardens of my mother, my sister, and myself. Also included are found materials that I encounter during my daily walks, such as a deceased butterfly and snapped branches. I am interested in the kaleidoscopic beauty of nature, amplifying its mingling elements through the use of prism photography. In contrast, I am also intrigued by the stark simplicity of nature, choosing to photograph other blooms against black backdrops to allow the colors and details of each element to catch the eye.

Garden Gifts

by Scottie Robinson

The gardens are in their mid-summer glory! The purple phlox are taller and more plentiful than I can remember. The rudbeckia lends its splash of bright yellow everywhere. The pink beebalm and bouncing bet stand proud. And the first lemon lily has awakened to the day. This month has sizzled with heat topping 95 degrees and dragged with drenching humidity. Sitting in the garden under the shade of the table umbrella, I feel sluggish. But the hummingbirds are energized! 

I hear the whirr and see three of them cavorting amongst the phlox. They all have iridescent golden green crowns and back feathers, but the one with the brilliant red throat distinguishes himself as the sole male. While he continues to sip nectar, the two females engage in a playful chase, soaring up into the tallest branches of a birch tree. Soon, the high flyers zoom back to where their friend is feeding. The trio then zips to a neighboring clump of beebalm, where I notice that their bellies are slightly concave as if practicing the cat/cow yoga pose. 

Suddenly, the male hummingbird swoops ten feet into the air and dives down. Swinging in a wide arc back up, he dives down again, landing very close to the other birds. This typical courtship behavior lasts for less than a minute, and then off he zooms. A light breeze sends the sweet fragrance of phlox my way as I sit simmering but feeling grateful for the rare and wonderful sight I have just witnessed on this sultry afternoon.

Through the Fields

by Melissa Lomax


Inspiration: In the last few weeks, I've been balancing my digital work with traditional experimentation. This piece, in particular, was my first attempt at creating with gouache. I loved how the paint laid down on the paper, sometimes with smooth satisfying strokes and other times with an unpredictable and beautiful dry edge. Cheers to digging around in the “garden of creativity,” and happily getting our hands a little dirty in the process!

Bug Boy

by Bran Winkler

He looked me up and down and changed the music. It was a buggy tune, befriended by his jitter legs. The bounce in his steps made the quiver in his torso undetectable. We’d spent the afternoon walking downstream. We took our shoes off; our rubber-soled turtles were left to bask in the sunlight. Moon pebbles and spongy dirt filled in between our toes and pressed firmly into our arches. We scanned the water for glimmers of light, watching our step to avoid them.

In another river, these glimmers would be of the Sun catching the geometric scales of a herring; or when mica shifts, exposing their bright minerals to the surface. But in Stony Run, they are cracked pieces of glass and other sharp metals. Little sun flares, clustered under the current, wait patiently to erupt into an explosion from the pressure of a foot. Like lava, the blood runs murky and hot and is carried away in the current. It’s an odd sight, watching the blood of your being, swept away by a current and knowing that it will never stop moving. Its continuation to gestate, to permeate. To inhabit other bodies of water, always tumbling, swirling, circling.

Jamie threw his hand in the water. I thought maybe he dropped something. When he retracted his hand, muddy and dark, like it had been pulled from the remnants of a dark star, cradled between his thumb and forefinger was a Mudpuppy. It writhed in his hand as he offered it to me.

“I don’ want it,” I said, shying away from the creature.

He shrugged and smiled at the apprehended salamander. Panic lived in its long eel tail as it flicked from side to side, reminiscent of the arm of the metronome my piano teacher would place before me during class. Methodical in nature, its rhythm ever present, always consistent. Eyes like black marbles, gazing at me humbly. We walked downstream past the run-off point. We walked till the ache in my feet was so severe I was tempted to look to ensure I hadn’t stepped on any broken glass or other disposed articles.

We went through a tunnel that was carved into the side of a hill. Its entryway, made of brick and stone, was long mossed over. This century-old ruin was now home only to dwellers of the nocturnal and scoundrels like us. More beer bottles and soggy bags of potato chips lay weathered on slabs of concrete. 

Halfway through the tunnel, Jamie squatted on a rock and unsheathed a utility knife from his fanny pouch. The knife’s black grip was scratched and rusty. Its arthritic joints creaked at the hinge. Jamie tapped his knife past the viscous surface on the wall and chipped away at the stone. The contact rang through the tunnel, a summoning for Jamie to hold a sermon for any lingering blights or wood nymphs. 

Jamie’s thin, nimble hands were awkward and gangling compared to the frame of his body. His squat posture articulated his spine and mirrored the drawings of early hominids in anthropology texts. Jamie had a young face, boyish and round, but his torso was toned and gaining mass. His body was maturing into a man’s, yet it was visible it knew nothing of it. He stepped back to admire his work and revealed he’d carved our initials, perpetually entwined by a mire knot.

Colorful Sunset

by Angela Patera

Acrylics, aquarelle paper

Inspiration: As this issue is themeless, I thought I'd submit something fitting for the first month of summer! I painted "Colorful Sunset" last May, when I was still living on an island, with a direct view to the sea. I dearly miss the sound and smell of the sea, and especially the sunsets.

Take Me to the River

by Holly Rose

And when my days have come to pass,Take me to the river.
Take me where we dipped our calves,Inviting sand between our toes,As our rolled-up hems grew damp with summer days.Where we dashed our heels against the bedrock,Laughing at our sun-flecked wounds, the fish                                                                 sucking them clean.
Lay me, gently, on the duckweed.Let the willows cast my shroud,But keep your tears tucked in your pocket, love,Lest tender waters swell and crowd,Cascading over riverbanks to flood into the earth,Your salt and silt now mingled.
Sink me where we rinsed our cups.The picnic packed away,With bubbles bursting on our tongues, and buckets swingingat the ready,Sandals slipping as we splashed for shrimp.Like otters, we searched for gold.
Don’t take away my river soldiers,With their fervent blades aloft,Here, they float with welcome,Bumping guards against my pebble-scraped knees.With dragonflies to kiss my cheeks,Cast me out into the green-mottled waters,Cleanse my crown to say goodbye.
Let me drift between its languid mouth,Lips pressed raw against the sea.Two lovers, I pass their vast embrace.
Oh, take me to the river, love,When you say goodbye to me.

Artists and Contributors

Hannah Birss


Hannah Birss (she/her) is a writer and aspiring magpie based out of Ontario, Canada. She can usually be found in a nest constructed of books, writing journals, and shiny trinkets. You can follow her on Instagram @hannahbirsswrites for news on upcoming and current publications, tips, tricks, and other writerly things.  

Afra Ahmad


Afra Ahmad is a writer, poet, artist, and calligrapher. Based in Taiwan, she holds a bachelor's degree in English literature. She writes about everything under the sun: from the dark issues of society to problems faced by teenagers, to imparting chunks of wisdom through her poems, stories, and write-ups. Her works have appeared in various magazines including Iman Collective, MYM, Rather Quiet, Ice Floe Press, Olney Magazine, The Malu Zine, The Sophon Lit, Blue Minaret, Melbourne Culture Corner, Her Hearth, The Hot Pot, Ghudsavar, Moonbow, Eunoia Review, Alternate Route, Ink In Thirds, Porch Lit, Zhagaram Literary Magazine, Broken Spine Collective, Duck Duck Mongoose, Afterpast Review, Unlikely Stories, Rewrite the Stars, Spillwords, A thin slice of anxiety, Punk Noir, Coffee and Conversations, Sea Glass Literary, Ujima Wire, Healthline Zine, and Stirling Review. 

Ben Nardolilli


Ben Nardolilli is an MFA candidate at Long Island University. His work has appeared in Door Is a Jar, Red Fez, and Slab. Follow his publishing journey at mirrorsponge.blogspot.com.

Lauren Kimball

Artist and Writer

Lauren Kimball (she/her) lives in Philadelphia. She teaches literature and composition at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. In her spare time, she plays with paint, digital pens, words, and home improvement tools.

You can find her comics on Instagram @turtle_n_hare_comic.

Amelia Díaz Ettinger


Amelia Díaz Ettinger is a BIPOC poet and writer. She has three full-length poetry books and two poetry chapbooks. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in literary journals and anthologies. Presently, she and her partner reside in Summerville, Oregon with two dogs, one cat, too many chickens, and a glorious vegetable garden.

Follow her on Instagram: @amelia_diaz_ettinger and on Facebook: @ameliadiazettinger 

Lynne Marie Rosenberg


Lynne Marie Rosenberg is a multihyphenate visual artist, writer, educator, and TV presenter based in Brooklyn, NY. She is the creator and host of the three-time Emmy-nominated television show, Famous Cast Words, on the PBS-affiliate network, ALL ARTS. She is currently on faculty at NYU Tisch in the Playwrights Horizons Theater School studio, and she is a long-time volunteer at The 52nd Street Project, a nonprofit organization serving youth in Hell’s Kitchen.

Irina Tall (Novikova)


Irina Tall (Novikova) is an artist, graphic artist, and illustrator. She graduated from the State Academy of Slavic Cultures with a degree in art. She also has a bachelor's degree in design.

Her first personal exhibition, "My soul is like a wild hawk," (2002), was held in the Museum of Maxim Bogdanovich. In her works, she raises themes of ecology, including a series of works in 2005 that she devoted to the Chernobyl disaster. She also draws on anti-war topics for inspiration. The first big series she drew was The Red Book, dedicated to rare and endangered species of animals and birds. She writes fairy tales and poems, as well as illustrates short stories. She draws various fantastic creatures: unicorns, animals with human faces, and images of the human/bird called a Siren. In 2020, she took part in Poznań Art Week. Her work has been published in magazines such as Gupsophila, Harpy Hybrid Review, Little Literary Living Room, and others. In 2022, her short story was included in the collection "The 50 Best Short Stories," and her poem was published in the poetry collection, "The wonders of winter."

Elke Hasselmann


Elke Hasselmann (she/her), is a recent Adv. graduate with a bachelor of arts, majoring in English at the University of Manitoba. As she finishes one chapter, another begins in her application to graduate schools to study Creative Writing. 

Growing up in Manitoba, the flat and dry prairie lands of Canada, she has felt moved by the wind flowing wheat, the colorful wild flowers that grow along the highway, and the tall maples to discover the world lost to her as she grew into adulthood: the world of being a young girl. 

Writing about the nostalgia of childhood and the forgotten past memories of those years long ago, is something that has driven and inspired her writing for the last year and will continue to do so as the summer in the prairies of Manitoba creeps by in its humidity. 

Jessica Furtado


Jessica Furtado is a multi-passionate artist whose visual work has been featured in Grub Street, Muzzle Magazine, Waxwing, and elsewhere, and whose writing has appeared in Qwerty, Rogue Agent, and VIDA Review, among others. Jessica’s poetry was a finalist in Best of the Net (2020), and her debut chapbook A Kiss for the Misbehaved (2023) is available from BatCat Press. To see what she’s up to next, visit Jess at www.jessicafurtado.com.

Scottie Robinson


Scottie Robinson (she/her) lives in the middle of 10 wooded acres in New Hampshire where she loves to garden and write about all the amazing wildlife sightings she has had there during the past 30 years. She is compiling all her observations into a handwritten wildlife journal that she plans to leave for the next owners of her home and property to read and enjoy. She will keep a second copy for herself and her family!

Melissa Lomax


Melissa Lomax (she/her) is a freelance illustrator, writer, and cartoonist, with 20 years of experience in the creative industry. Some of her clients include American Greetings, Sellers Publishing, Great Arrow Graphics, Lenox Corporation, and Highlights for Children. Her comic 'Doodle Town' posts on GoComics.com, the largest catalog of syndicated cartoons and comics. When she is not in the art studio, she enjoys spending time in nature, drinking really good coffee, and 'everyday adventures' with her husband. Pop by her Instagram @melissalomaxart for weekly inspiration!

Bran Winkler


Bran Winkler (they/them) is a novelist, filmmaker, and archivist from Baltimore, MD. They enjoy writing meditative work that focuses on lush nature, fractured beings, and elements of magical realism. Follw Bran on any of the following social media sites: Instagram: @local__skunk ; Substack: https://winklrwriter.substack.com/ ; Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/winklr

Angela Patera


Angela Patera is a published writer and artist, and an emerging poet. Her short stories have appeared in Livina Press, Myth & Lore Zine, and more. Her art has appeared in numerous publications, as well as on the cover of Selenite Press, Penumbra Online, Monster Mag, and Apothecary Journal. When Angela isn't creating, she likes to spend time outside in nature.

You can find her on both Twitter/X and Instagram, @angela_art13.

Holly Rose


Holly Rose (she/her) is a poet and aspiring author from Northamptonshire, England. Her work has been longlisted for the Mslexia flash fiction prize. This is her first published work. When not writing, Holly can be found reading in her hammock with an iced latte. 

You can find her on Instagram @holly.rosebooks 

Jessica Doble

Poetry Editor

Jessica Doble (she/her) holds a PhD in English from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She's published two critical works: “Hope in the Apocalypse: Narrative Perspective as Negotiation of Structural Crises in Salvage the Bones” in Xavier Review, and “Two-Sides of the Same Witchy Coin: Re-examining Belief in Witches through Jeannette Winterson’s The Daylight Gate” in All About Monsters. Her poetry has appeared in PubLab and Wild Greens magazine. 

Myra Chappius

Poetry Editor and Copyeditor

Myra Chappius (she/her) is the author of six works of fiction and poetry. While her passion lies with shorter creations, it is her aspiration to complete a full-length novel and screenplay someday. She enjoys reading, running, cinema, music, and seeing the world. When not doing mom things, she is working full-time, learning a new language, and planning her next trip. 

You can follow Myra on Instagram at @inwordform. Her work can be purchased on Amazon.

Tim Brey

Music Editor

Tim Brey (he/him) is a jazz pianist living in Philadelphia. He holds positions as Artist-in-Residence and Adjunct Faculty at Temple University and The University of the Arts, where he teaches jazz piano, music theory, and improvisation. Check out more of his music and his performance schedule at https://www.timbreymusic.com.

Jacqueline Ruvalcaba

Senior Editor

Jacqueline (she/her) edits fiction and nonfiction as the senior editor for Wild Greens magazine. She earned her BA in English and creative writing at the University of California, Riverside, and completed training as a 2021 publishing fellow with the Los Angeles Review of Books. She previously served as a co-editor for PubLab, editor for UCR's Mosaic Art and Literary Journal, and as an intern with Soho Press. In her free time, she loves to read all kinds of stories, including YA, literary fiction, sci-fi, and fantasy.

Maggie Topel


Maggie Topel (she/her) is an artist and writer living in Philadelphia. She designs our seasonal Wild Greens logos and social media avatar.

Hayley Boyle

Arts Editor

Hayley (she/her) creates the cover image for each issue of Wild Greens and serves as the Arts Editor. Hayley is a social justice seeker, world traveler, rock climber, dog snuggler, frisbee player, event planner, and storyteller. She loves to paint with watercolors, embroider, and write. She grew up reading sci-fi and fantasy, and to this day she still turns to those genres to help her make sense of the world. She calls Philadelphia home where she lives with her partner Evan and her dog Birdie, and she wouldn't have it any other way. You can find Hayley on Instagram @hayley3390.

Rebecca Lipperini


Rebecca Lipperini (she/her) is a writer, teacher, and academic living in Philadelphia, and the founding editor of Wild Greens magazine. She holds a PhD in English from Rutgers University, where she taught all kinds of classes on literature and poetry and writing, and wrote all kinds of papers on the same. Her essay on the soothing aesthetics of the supermarket was recently published in PubLab. She teaches in the Critical Writing Program at the University of Pennsylvania.

You can find Rebecca on Instagram @rebeccalipperini (personal) @wildgreensmag (you already know it).