charles townsend bessentAlong with his first camera, photographer CHARLES TOWNSEND BESSENT gained an instantaneous compulsion to document the earth and all of its eccentricities. He believes that a photograph should speak without the necessity of words and that traveling is the highest form of pleasure. Currently residing in Vail, Colorado, Townsend photographs anything from extreme sports to weddings. He spends his spare time on the road in search of images that evoke emotion and connect people across the globe.

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christopher cokinosCHRISTOPHER COKINOS is the author of three books of nonfiction, including most recently Bodies, of the Holocene (Truman). He’s had work recently appear in Orion, High Country News, New Delta Review and Western Humanities Review. A nonfiction writer and poet, he’s from Indianapolis, earned an MFA from Washington University in St. Louis, and now directs the creative writing program at the University of Arizona. The winner of several writing awards, he’s long been a fan of Rene Magritte, whose painting of the same title inspired his poem.

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Gwendolyn EdwardA nonfiction, poetry, and fiction writer, GWENDOLYN EDWARD enjoys writing prose that challenges genre form and convention because she likes to pick fights with editors. Her nonfiction has appeared in Crab Orchard Review, The Citron Review, and Vine Leaves, among others. She received her MA in Creative Writing from the University of North Texas, and she is currently pursuing a MFA at Bennington. She works with Fifth Wednesday Journal as an assistant nonfiction editor.

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Priya HutnerPRIYA HUTNER is a writer, health and wellness chef and consultant, and yoga instructor embracing the Tahoe lifestyle. She writes feature articles and food reviews for The Weekly and freelances for The Sierra Sun, Tahoe Magazine and Northwoods Magazine. She also writes nonfiction book reviews for Transitions Radio Magazine in Santa Fe. Priya is currently writing a memoir about her experience living and working on an ashram with a guru for more than 20 years. | Photo: Marni Bistany.

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Brad Aaron ModlinBRAD AARON MODLIN’s nonfiction, fiction, and poetry have appeared or are forthcoming in River Teeth, Denver Quarterly, StoryQuarterly, Indiana Review, Superstition Review, Florida Review, and others. He is a PhD candidate at Ohio University in Athens, where he edits Quarter After Eight. While he has never built a house on the ocean floor, he looks forward to swimming in saltwater every winter, where all you have to do is keep your nose up and float.

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Brendan O'MearaBRENDAN O’MEARA, who lives in Upstate New York, is the author of Six Weeks in Saratoga: How Three-Year-Old Filly Rachel Alexandra Beat the Boys and Became Horse of the Year. Most of his work centers on sport: horse racing, golf, tennis, and body building, among others. He won a Keystone Press Award for “History’s Turn at Milliken’s Corner” for Mountain Home Magazine. Brendan’s work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, The Good Men Project, Horse Race Insider, and Trail Runner Magazine. This essay is part of a memoir-in-progress titled The Last Championship: A Memoir of My Father and Baseball. Disgusted by the state of doughnuts in the northeast, Brendan has visions of opening up a doughnut food truck called Donutarium: Crazy Good Donuts.

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Reimink3A decade of work and travel brought filmmaker KEITH REIMINK to Antarctica in 2005. With a small video camera, he filmed his first feature-length documentary, No Horizon Anymore, an award-winning film about spending a year at the South Pole. Following the success of this film, Keith launched DALIBORKAfilms, a Pittsburgh-based company focusing on passion projects including documentaries and music videos. Keith received his BFA in film production from New York University. The music of Ghost Heart is featured in “On Being Polar.”

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Susan Fox RogersSUSAN FOX ROGERS is the author of My Reach: A Hudson River Memoir, which chronicles her adventures, large and small, in a kayak on the Hudson. She has edited twelve anthologies relating to place, adventure, and the natural world including Solo: On her own Adventure, and Two in the Wild. In 2004, she travelled to Antarctica on a National Science Foundation grant and produced Antarctica: Life on the Ice. Since 2001, she has taught writing at Bard College. In addition to the birds, Rogers has found that a nice house on a hill in the Hudson Valley with views of the Catskill Mountains helps ease the midlife crisis.

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Margarita Gokun SilverMARGARITA GOKUN SILVER (@StoriesColors) is a writer and an artist living in Madrid, Spain. Margarita’s work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Jewish Daily Forward, Vela Magazine, McShoutys, and Mash Stories, among others. She holds a completely-unrelated-to-writing master’s degree from Yale University. Margarita continues to look in the mirror when returning for forgotten items and has passed on the habit to her American-born husband and daughter. She still has that scarf even though she no longer wears it.

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PHOTOGRAPHY CONTRIBUTORS for this issue include: creative genius Arika Theule-VanDam (baseball and glove in Brendan O’Meara’s “The Sultans of Swing”); Proximity editor Carrie Kilman (all photographs in the stories by Gwendolyn Edward, Susan Fox Rogers, Brad Aaron Modlin, Christopher Cokinos, and Priya Hutner); Proximity editor Traci J. Macnamara (cover photographs, all photographs in the story by Margarita Gokun Silver, and the road photograph in “The Sultans of Swing”).

A Note from our Editors — Issue 18, our Annual Prizes, Submission Calls & more!   Read