Monday, August 03, 2009



Some say the world will end in fire:
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire…

In Robert Frost’s famous poem “Fire and Ice” the poet goes on to say that if the world had to perish twice he knew enough of hate to know that for destruction, ice was also great, and would suffice. While it’s hard to know exactly what was in any poet’s mind when they wrote a particular poem we can say (I think) it’s at least suggestive that Frost in this writing was thinking of ice as indifference, as neglect. This neglect is proving deadly in our collective indifference to our environment. However, like Frost, I hold with those who favor fire. And probably so would the majority of BC inhabitants’ at the moment as we survey our burning forests.

Anyone who sees the film “Home” will be impressed with the role trees have played not only in the evolution of soils, plants, animals, water, and oxygen, but also how we as humans have evolved with them. And in spite of the fact that trees have brought us life and health and happiness we have not loved them in return. Not so, you say? You have always loved trees, you say? Well, people try to protect what they love. When people love enough they will take risks to try to protect what they love, even if this involves financial or physical danger to them. Collectively, we have not done this. Collectively, we have passively watched our vast public forests fall to corrupt logging corporations and governments who have catered to them. As this combination of corporate greed, government duplicity and citizen passively has markedly contributed to global warming by resulting in a massive deforestation of the forests of our province. And this is a crime. It’s a crime against humanity and a crime against nature.
Is there nothing to be done except chant “Burn, baby, burn?” as massive areas of our forests burn to cinders? Yes, there is. When the fires die down we can love, really love, as individuals and citizens, what’s left of these trees, these forests. We can surround them with our love. We can protect them. Whatever this takes. Betty K

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