On July 12, 2023

Mountain Meditation: Flood reminds us to act to protect fragile ecosystem


By Marguerite Jill Dye

I am grateful to be in Vermont! It gives me a sense of joy and freedom. I feel relieved, surrounded by trees and nestled among Vermont’s Green Mountains.

We spotted a black long tailed weasel—our very first ever as it crossed Route 4. We discovered the groundhog in our back yard is called a “whistling pig.” He feeds about three most afternoons, but on rainy days he chatters in the woods.

There’s much to look forward to this summer—hiking Bear Mountain, Killington trails and our beloved Kent Pond where we check on loons and Canada geese. A few mallards rest in hidden lagoons, away from the eagles’ sharp eye sight.

Throughout the day hummingbirds flock to our glass feeders filled with sugar water. Sometimes they come and go peacefully, but often I’m startled by their aggression. A bold male with a ruby red throat dive bombs invaders so his mate can feed.

We had a mix of sun and rain recently that helped wash the smoke away. The sun popped out through a thick grey haze as fires burn in our neighbor to the north.

But now downpours have taken over, reminiscent of Tropical Storm Irene. Due to rain in the last few weeks, the ground is saturated and ripe for flooding. Trees fall over and hillsides erode as rivers and streams overtake roadways.

Fortunately much work’s been done since the devastation of Irene, but bridges and roads that are still too low will show weak links in the current storm.

What we’re seeing in extreme weather events is a glimpse of the future on uncared for Planet Earth. Irresponsible people have allowed this to happen through greedy behavior, poor decision making, and by lifting protective restrictions. To not anticipate Earth’s future trajectory is criminal behavior that affects all beings.

The people need to rise up to challenge the status quo and demand action NOW! It’s almost too late to reverse the destruction of Earth’s CO2, water, and land. Call out leaders who do not make change. Point out state discrepancies (like Vermont and Florida—the former is stricter while the latter is lax).

When Canada is suffering to such an extent as wild fire smoke invades the U.S., minds are awakened to this imminent threat. We can’t let this moment be forgotten and pass.

Stand up! Speak out! Have courage and faith that the people united have infinite power but must act immediately to save our Earth.

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