Messiah Wolf

Joe Donnelly

In celebration of Earth Day, we’re sharing in its entirety Joe Donnelly’s essay about OR-7 (also known as Journey), the male gray wolf that was electronically tracked as he migrated from the Wallowa Mountains in the northeastern corner of the U.S. state of Oregon to the southern Cascade Range. “Messiah Wolf” originally appeared in Issue 119, which you can order from our Shop page.

When I was a boy, my imagination was ripe for wolves. But, it wasn’t the usual folktales and fables that got to me, or the scenes of wolf packs airbrushed onto the panel vans of my suburban youth. At six years old, my wolf was a companion, not a cautionary tale or a signifier of
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