It’s entirely possible that, over the coming centuries, cities will flood, crops will fail and groups of people will suffer but, it is equally possible that other groups people will survive, even thrive. Communities will form where people have figured out that we need to change our relationship to the natural world and to learn to live regeneratively.
There is so much sadness now.
Going out, I encounter chaos.
Frantic people, fearful, spinning out,
rushing in circles.
Standing on a clifftop –
below me, fenced and inaccessible –
cliffs no one ever climbs
and a beach no human ever treads
only the birds,
but no humans,
the sea rushing to a wild shore.
Is the sea freer here?
Just along the bay
boardwalks and piers,
picnic tables and sandy coves.
Tame places, human places
and the sea benign and calm.
Here, where the sea shines silver
and the wind blows wintery
there is a space
for a moment
to imagine something other
than despair and chaos.
Through it all the wild seas rising,
shining silver in the new dawn.
From my eco novel The Journey:
There was a long pause where no one spoke then Tulani’s voice came again, softer this time. ‘Our grief over what was lost will always be with us and the work that confronts us is daunting. The seas around our new home continue to rise. They are polluted with plastic and, as they absorb the excess carbon in the atmosphere, they become acidic. The acid waters dissolve the shells of oysters and other crustaceans. This affects the entire food chain. Even the mighty whales. The tiny sea snails that form part of their diet are disappearing,’ Tulani shook her head sadly.
‘One thing we have observed is that sea grasses grow well in the carbon rich waters,’ she said in a more hopeful tone. ‘Scientists tell us they absorb a great deal of atmospheric carbon and can help reverse ocean acidification. To bolster this process we are currently planting seagrass beds around the shallow waters of our new island home. They are wonderful plants and have many attributes. They can even act as filters that capture fragments of plastic.’ Tulani gazed around a room with a gentle, open smile. ‘I have journeyed here to Jedahra to talk with you about these matters and learn about the healing practices you are doing here. My hope is that we can come together to heal the Earth.’
A long round of applause followed the old lady’s talk then a young woman seated opposite Terran spoke up. ‘Ocean acidification and pollution is a big issue for my community too,’ she said. ‘I come from a small village near the mouth of a river on the south coast. The rising seas gnaw at the land and every tide brings in waves of plastic. To try and stabilise the shores we are planting out mangroves and salt marshes. Like seagrass these plants absorb a lot of atmospheric carbon and help protect the coastline from storm surges. We too are constantly clearing plastic from the beaches. It feels like a never-ending task. Whenever there are floods inland we see large amounts of plastic and refuse being washed down the river and into the sea. To counter this we have built and installed a large filter on the river. We are planning to install similar filters on other rivers in our region.’
‘That has to be a global action for it to be effective,’ a man seated near Terran said.
‘Yes,’ the young woman replied, ‘but we have to start where we are by doing what we can.’
The Journey is now available as a Kindle ebook and a paperback on Amazon. (see link in my blog sidebar). I am currently preparing a PDF that will be freely available to anyone. I will post a link to it later in the week.