This past Saturday when I drove past, the ponds were gone. So were the poplar groves and the few spruce and pine that grew in this section of a large field. Like all land-clearing operations, that small pasture now looks like a lunar landscape or war zone.
This December, as it does each year, the journal Science announced the top science breakthrough of the past year.
I awake from a nightmare in which all my human relationships have been threatened by my own actions
By the time you read this, I’ll be almost recuperated from two months of extreme gardening. Last fall we left for Florida without accomplishing much cleanup, so this past April consisted of endless days of raking leaves and clearing debris. May was all about weeding, planting and pruning. But June is sheer gratification. Time to sit back and marvel.
What is the most popular outdoor activity? No, it’s not playing golf. And it’s not running. Canadians enjoy gardening more than anything else we do outdoors, followed by our love of walking. As a result, the gardening and horticultural industry does a booming business at this time of the year.
I received a distressing email from a friend who had encountered a group of climate-change denying Christians. These evangelical Christians, some of whom depend on the continued success of the oil sands directly or indirectly, apparently think that the whole climate change issue is somehow a ruse of anti-Christian forces bent on duping the world.
I’m afraid of birds. (Someday I’ll share the backstory.) Paradoxically, though, they also mesmerize me. Phobias are like that. Fear sparks fascination.
What would David have said about Ontario in autumn? Of the explosion of colour in our forests – and what would he have written about our hills, far as the eye can see, on fire with red and gold and yellow? Would he have seen a metaphor for the way that God makes everything new – sometimes through literal flame, often through figurative flame – through the dying of the old ways to make way for what’s next?
A nice piece of well-tended lawn is just the thing to introduce you to gardens, a patch of forest or perennial beds. A lawn is also a habitat for some creatures: robins thrive by using lawns as food buffets, as do rabbits (nasty nibblers) and swallows that swoop and dive for open-air insects.
Surrounded by wilderness, I am a person of small places. A rural person. It is enough to know that there are sheer cliffs nearby, long hiking trails, talus slopes, alpine lakes and meadows. But I am a person of fields, small shaws, marshes, creeks, ditches, meadows and farmyards.
There is an ancient tradition tying Psalm 104 together with the celebration of Pentecost, the day the church celebrates the sending of the Holy Spirit.
You might expect that the biblical principle spurring environmental action is stewardship. Several Wisconsinite environmentalists, however, suggest that community is even more important.