I’ve logged more experience than most with simplicity and the complexity you discover inside simplicity, minimalism and asocial behavior, endurance and landscape.
Here is the truth: I think some deep wisdom inside me (a) sensed the stress, (b) was terrified for me, and (c) gave me something new and hard to focus on in order to prevent me from lapsing into a despair coma — and also to keep me from having a jelly jar of wine in my hand.
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Stephanie Mills has been active in the ecology movement for more than thirty years, and in 1996 Utne Reader named her as one of the world’s leading visionaries. Her books include In the Service of the Wild (Beacon Press), Whatever Happened to Ecology?, and Turning Away from Technology (both Sierra Club Books). She lives in the Great Lakes bioregion in the upper Midwest.
Details are my delight. In the country, many of the details have minds of their own: lady beetles crowding around, seeking winter hibernacula; knapweed flourishing everywhere; a raccoon and her pudgy kits climbing a cherry tree; a crow japing overhead. All this living, self-willed detail informs me in ways that cities no longer do.
At century’s end, we’re consumers, not gatherers or producers. We’re at the mercy of dimly understood industrial processes and long lines of supply. Being at such removes — practical, geographic, and technological — from our sustenance, most of us are ignorant of the source of our tap water and the provenance of our food.
We swore to do it till death do us part and neither of us crossed our fingers. That, in itself, was rather a miracle. We were hardly speaking at the time. “I will” was a long conversation.
September 11. Male and female created he them. What is the truth, the mystery of that difference?
September 17. He held me and called me his buddy. Funny. I hadn’t thought of him as a friend so much as a lover.