“No man is an island entire of itself; every man / is a piece of the continent, a part of the main” So wrote John Donne in his oft-quoted Meditation XVII. Theodore Fleming, we can assume has, at least at some point in the past, likely read Donne’s famous meditation, and perhaps was even thinking about it as he examined the discoveries he made in his study of cactus pollination and pollinators near Sonora, Mexico.
Even though I’ve lived in the small Oregon town of Scappoose for more than two decades now, I still find myself disoriented. It’s the river. Flowing past the town, the Columbia flows south to north. In Astoria, where I was raised, it flowed – and still continues to flow – east to west. Rivers are like that; they have effects on a person.