A letter to our mother, Earth.

Day 140

photo by Wilson Alvarez

photo by Wilson Alvarez

You must remember the beginning.

A gathering of matter,

pulled from particles

left wandering

after the creation of our sun.

Were you conscious then? Could you feel your strength growing,

collecting,

turning into core?

Was your soft heart pulsing?

Or. like baby in womb,

were you more aware of mother than of self?

Your only thoughts,

the glowing hum of vast, and radiant spacetime,

the very fabric of life?

And then, after some time,

after you had grown large,

and steady,

strong enough to hold together,

did you know the volcanoes would bring life? That their violent spewing would create gases,

the very air your many children would one day need to breathe?

Did the many collisions hurt you?

The large one that tilted your axis and created the moon?

Or were you happy then,

to have a sister in the sky,

a silver face reflected back at you,

in the otherwise dark night sky?

And then a great cooling,

lava turned to crust,

new soil.

And water,

salty and sweet,

in pools on your surface.

Was it a relief?

The stilling,

after such an outpouring of hot,

liquid

creation?

And then your children.

Was it your plan from the beginning?

Did your mother’s heart cry to the darkness

asking for the gift of life?

Babies,

so small at first.

I’m sure you prayed for their survival,

cradled them softly in outstretched arms,

breathed soft wishes

into their new and tiny bodies.

And as they multiplied,

were you joyous?

Did you count your blessings and pray for more?

Because so many followed.

The trees, and the plants, and the reptiles, and the amphibians, and the fish, and the fungi, and the mammals,

made in your image,

playing, and laughing, and growing, and living,

in the sweet safe home you had made.

Oh , but a mother

with heart as large as yours,

has carried many sorrows too.

The loss has been great.

So many creatures,

the great lizards, the tiny mammals,

the marsupials, the strange winged ones with feathers and claws,

the big trees, and giant ferns,

and the strange souls from the watery depths,

with the spiny fins and glowing eyes.

And more recently,

the passenger pigeon, the thylacine,

and the black rhino from the endless plains.

So many babies,

lost,

to the sands of time.

Endless changing, great cycles. Birth, life, death, and birth again.

And now,

the ones who walk on two legs,

causing so much trouble.

Did you know?

Did you have an inkling, when we were born,

what the future would hold?

So precocious from the start, to stand on two legs, bellies facing the world.

Were you proud of our big brains and clever hands?

Were there warning signs?

Quiet killings, and dark murders,

the first of your children to kill for pleasure, not food.

Things are bad.

We’ve strayed very far from our path.

And yet you hold us,

forced to stand witness,

as we annhialate ourselves,

trying very hard to take it all down with us.

Do you cry,

hard and loud,

at the things that happen here?

Do you ache at your core,

wondering how to fix this mess?

Howl to the endless skies, ask for help and answers, wonder how much more you can take?

In the darkest moments, in your lowest lows, hollow hearted from endless loss,

do you blame yourself?

Do you love us,

still,

despite all the trouble we cause?

I’d like to lay my heavy head,

at your soft, green breast,

and suck,

to make the pain go away,

to feel the bond

between mother and child.

Have we been separated for too long, Mama?

Does your milk still flow,

at the sound of our cries,

and the touch of our small and gentle hands?

Please,

hold me close,

and whisper in my ear.

Stroke my hair,

and rock me to sleep.

It is you who deserves comfort

Mama,

but it is we who need your love the most.

Dear mother,

Earth.

I am sorry. We have turned our backs on you, rejected your amazing gifts, your endless love.

I love you so much. My heart beats for you. The blue of your sky, the green of your trees. The ruby red and gold of your summer sunsets. This world.

Please forgive me. For turning to you so late. For ignoring your cries for so long. For not doing more to save you.

Thank you. For your unconditional love. For holding me, gentle and fierce. For your love.

I feel it now.

I am a child for you.

Always.

Thank you for listening,

Love,

Natasha

photo by Michelle Johnsen

photo by Michelle Johnsen

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2 responses to “A letter to our mother, Earth.

  1. Cheryl Hansberry

    I’m running out of superlatives, Natasha.

    This put me into an altered state – with visions and visceral reactions – like one finds in deep meditations and the religious connecting of our fathers and mothers past, under the tent, with scents and textures and sounds carrying us away in waves.

    Thank you.

  2. This is beautiful, gorgeous! — the lines are simply dripping with imagery, life, and motion. Thank you for writing.

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