I had wondered if I had somehow missed the brilliant red of maple leaves, but finally found them this week, forming umbrellas of red and brilliant sunlight over littered ground. Creating red circles among lawns of green, contrasting elsewhere against yellow. As life’s restrictions have stretched through months, I am thankful for noticing changes I might not have without my confinement in Chicago, where I used to go for walks. I noticed that a kestrel frequented the neighborhood, and I would often see it streaking down the center of a street. Now, in Connecticut, my neighborhood hosts mourning doves, flickers and ravens. I am humbly reminded that the Earth continues, whether I am paying attention or not.
The morning of November 4, I went to the shoreline, and watched the outside of a rainbow arise – yellow, orange, red – from the water’s horizon. I stood between the sun and the moon directly behind me. They held me, and reminded me to endure. To be faithful. To Be.
This year I was surprised that the Sierra Club sent me reminders to vote, and called for Racial Justice. They understand that all these concerns are tied together. Taking care of birds means maintaining habitat. Protecting Alaskan tundra means refusing the sale of oil rights. We and the Earth have a reciprocal relationship. Evoking Robin Wall Kimmerer, the Earth loves us back when we choose to love her.
I have just a sliver of time standing between sun and moon. In recent months, connecting with the Earth has sustained me, kept me balanced, and I choose to hear a call, a responsibility to act for her. As we glimpse the possibility of moving out of crisis mode, may we turn attention to survival on an even grander scale. May we be thankful to have had this time to connect with the Earth, and may we bring what we’ve learned from recent efforts, into work that remains vital to do.
Yours always, Kim Warman