Dr-Ian-McCallum-gimp-2501Dr. McCallum’s journey as an author and poet began many years ago.  He first published his anthology of wilderness poems, Wild Gifts in 1999.  His special interests focus on evolutionary theory, human ecology and the animal-human interface (what we learn about ourselves from the animals) and astronomy.  He is the Writer/Poet for the ‘Untamed’ exhibition 2010, a year long exhibition at Kirstenbosch Gardens which explores the lost balance between humankind and nature.

Ian Player and Ian McCallum became close friends and their shared passion for Wild Africa is clear in Player’s forward to McCallum’s anthology of poems, `Wild Gifts’.   “Each poem brings images and sounds of this most ancient of continents and as Ian has suggested, if you read them out aloud, I believe you will hear the echo in the deep personal Africa that all of us carry – the millions of years of human evolution in Africa imprinted in our psyche. ”

My personal favourite poem in the anthology is `Wilderness’ which McCallum has dedicated to Ian Player with the words …”history will show that he ranks amongst the great visionaries of the Wild.”

McCallum presently directs the Environmental Education programme for the Wilderness Foundation.  When he is not in wild places recalibrating his heartbeat with that of Nature, he lives with his wife Sharon in the Scenic South.

To purchase a copy of Wild Gifts or his latest book Untamed email Ian & Sharon McCallum here

Click here to read more about Ian McCallum and his work 

Wilderness 

Have we forgotten

that wilderness is not a place,

but a pattern of soul

where every tree, every bird and beast

is a soul maker?

Have we forgotten

that wilderness is not a place,

but a moving feast of stars,

footprints, scales and beginnings?

Since when

Did we become afraid of the night

and that only the bright stars count?

Or that our moon is not a moon

Unless it is full?

By whose command

were the animals

through groping fingers,

one for each hand,

reduced to the big and little five?

Have we forgotten

 that every creature is within us

carried by tides

of earthly blood

and that we named them?

Have we forgotten

that wilderness is not a place,

but a season

and that we are in its

final hour?