Earth Day, 46 Years Later: Still the Same

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C. Coimbra photo

Fourty-six years past the first Earth Day in 1970.

I haven’t changed much (if I don’t factor in the wrinkles, waistline and silver hair) from the young woman who sat on a hillside bench and reveled in the glory of the redwood and madrone leaves bending to the breeze laden with brined-air that slipped through the mountain valley and liberated the sweetness of spring’s wild Scotch broom, as the sun showered light and warmth to the soil below.

I haven’t changed much from the girl who discovered that the sea could cradle me in her surf and comfort me like the mother that I never really experienced.

I haven’t changed much from that young woman who squished her rear into the sandy beach, and with her friend screamed “Yeah, God!” each time a huge wave splattered like fireworks against the jagged shoreline rocks.

I haven’t changed much from that young woman who relished the solitude of a desert sunrise and opened her heart to each ray of sun as it took command of the eastern sky.

I haven’t changed much from the young mother who holds no shame in naming her children so that they, too, would align with this planet, knowing full well that our chemistry matches the sea and the soil.

I haven’t changed much from the young mother who planted seeds for the food that I would feed my children, for I wanted them to consume and savor life in its prime.

I haven’t changed much from the woman who discovered the breath and groove of a snow covered mountain as I aligned with it so to ski my way from the mountain’s majestic view point back to the valley below.

I haven’t changed much from the person prostrate on earth and begging for answers to comfort my ripped-apart soul.

I haven’t changed much from the person who learned that pressing against a giant stone or a tree, or that cupping a flower, or inhaling mountain air, or letting the primordial roar of the sea overtake my senses, is medicine in its purest form.

I haven’t changed much from the person who could never understand why another would defile the planet. I haven’t changed much from the person who gasps when others mock those who cherish nature. I haven’t changed much from the person completely confounded by the assumption that humans first, planet whenever. I haven’t changed much from the person compelled to communicate why respecting nature is prayer.

An Earth Day Prayer from a Bench in Big Sur

Seek the collective
beauty of this planet
and our universe.

Defile the planet:
Defile god.

Do not use
sacred words
with thoughts
of destruction;
with thoughts
of consumption;
with thoughts
of false wealth.

Seek synergy and life.
Find interconnectedness:
Discover your soul.

We stroll upon
a connected ellipse
that twirls circles of mass.
Call it Life’s Seed.
Call it Life’s Magic.
Call it what you like.

Seek the collective
beauty of the planet
and our universe.

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