I am up early this morning, as darkness still lingers at a time when sunrise and birdsong greeted me a few short weeks ago. I walk out to the porch, and as my eyes adjust to the lack of light, I see the shapes of two deer grazing in my neighbors back yard. I watch them quietly as daybreak begins -- such a lovely, peaceful sight to begin my day.
And I ponder -- if more people in our nation lived closer to nature, would we have been more apt to fight to preserve the natural bounty that was so freely available to us? Would we have been so easily convinced to turn our farmlands into big box stores and cookie-cutter housing developments? Would we have fought harder for fuel economy and alternative energy to help save our climate? In fact, would we have been more aware that the climate was indeed changing significantly before our eyes?
Maybe for those who cool their homes with air conditioning rather than window breezes, and drive in cars with windows up and air conditioning on, and work in climate-controlled buildings with stale air and windowless walls, there is no reason to recognize climate change. City dwellers whose most frequent exposure to nature is a small park amongst the tall office buildings and suburbanites whose little tracts of property are professionally landscaped and maintained somehow don't really have the rhythm of nature in their souls as do people who take the time to look and feel and smell the simple beauty around them every day.
The subtle differences that have been markers for climate change since the early 1970's have gone unnoticed by a majority of our population. The gradual warming of autumn and winter and the diminished snows were welcomed by many as a convenience, rather than seen as a worrisome, insiduous change in our environment.
I wonder -- will they ever be convinced? Is it too late anyway? Have we already scarred this lovely planet and its atmosphere beyond repair?
Sad thoughts on this quiet autumn morning as the deer munch, and I gaze silently in awe of the beauty around me --