The Great Braid of our Being…One Writer’s Lament on the Unraveling of the Natural World
As a human being I have lived rurally in the mountainous wilderness of far far northern California for 45 years. As a writer of stories that take place herein, living in the midst of this tragic decline observing and feeling its impact daily has become a difficult practice of juggling fear and hope. For one who has always been drawn to, taken solace in and deeply respected the elements in their bewitching, elegant systematic and magical perfection, this unraveling of the interwoven connection between humans and nature hits home, literally.
Whether it be Terra Forming, Solar Radiation Management, GeoEngineering, Fracking or Weather Modification, the natural rhythms and cycles of planet earth have been forever changed. Since the Industrial Revolution, humankind has progressively reached a level of technology that allows for the manipulation and mindless destruction of nature as we have known it. All in the name of greed.
We have ravished the earth, raped and gouged its surface, or dug into her to mine or extract the black blood that oils the machinations of modern societies. We can microwave deep into her belly to create fissures and earthquakes or shoot these beams into the sky causing hurricanes typhoons, floods and other destructive weather patterns. The seeds of her bounty are genetically modified breaking the ancient chain of abundance that mirrors the cycles of birth, life death and rebirth.
The fires of intentionally engineered droughts wreck havoc, incinerating trees, animals, people and their homes. That first flame that rose and bloomed between two flinted stones now ignites endless wars. These plumes pouring forth from weapons, bombs, rockets, nuclear explosions and airborne chemicals are executed for one reason only, to kill. Our blessed sun no longer an ally, shines forth without its protective layers, burning, blistering, scorching. The fire in our bellies have been squelched with pharmaceutical drugs made to tamp down passion, creativity and curiosity.
The waters on our earthship have either been diminished by man-made drought or poisoned by chemical spills or nuclear contamination. The giant pines and cedars that tower above my little writing cabin are dying from a drought like no other in the last 2000 years. My body of water aches for the oceans, the sea creatures that have disappeared from my beloved beach that was once prolific and rich with scarlet starfish, chartreuse anemones and swaying seaweeds. The dead bodies of seabirds and seals and whales litter a swath of coastline from Canada to Mexico. Fukushima. The terrible unutterable word that is all but absent from our vocabulary or media.
No longer can I write a poem about a robin's egg blue sky complete with wind currents that call in the miracle of cumulus or cirrus clouds. My skies are now criss crossed by unmarked planes spewing skeins of poison. What or whom has given permission to these few people who play God, with this, our necessary air, our health, our very breath? These aerosol sprays happen worldwide without our knowledge, approval, or any testing on flora, fauna or humans. This dance of destruction and its choreography of insanity is spinning the earth into extinction.
Still, the Autumn afternoon light leaks through the leaves in amber, persimmon, rose. A tribute to the occasional beauty of death. Slender threads of spider webs float on currents of warm air. Pale green rosettes of mullein cluster underfoot, their spear shaped petals furred with down. A grey squirrel traverses the limbs of a cedar, his tail a feathered prayer flag. Birdsong although diminished, still rings with life's wild force. I take it all in…in sadness and remembered joy, grateful for my time in this place on this earth, that is sacred, mysterious and irreplaceable.