“We cannot win this battle to save species and environments without forging an emotional bond between ourselves and nature as well—for we will not fight to save what we do not love.”
—Stephen Jay Gould, from Eight Little Piggies
Fall came without me noticing, wrapped up as I have been in the various profound and piddling things that have occupied my attention these past ten weeks. It’s as though I looked up one day, and there it was—red and yellow and mercifully cool. Then, in one windy day, much of it was already gone.
It’s a life metaphor. I see those a lot this time of year. It’s like the world has finished its long season of work and can
finally take a moment to reflect on what is happening around us. There is less daylight, but I seem to have more time. I get even more introspective than usual.
I’m also more connected to the natural world in the fall. I spend more time outside. I notice more living things. I remember not just how dependent we are on the earth, but how interconnected we are with it. When we forget that interconnection, we not only run the risk of damaging our environment. We become less human.
Fall is a melancholy season, even for those of us who love it. But that love is itself a reminder of how precious our world is, and of why we need to preserve it for our children.