who love it call it "The Canyon"the canyonas
if there were no other such topographical feature on the earth's
face... Meanwhile, there it is, in my own backyard, waiting for
me all these millions of yearsthe Canyon. I am tempted to
write "my Canyon," so possessive can that place make me
feel. But the Canyon is not mine, nor anyone's; the Canyon
belongs to alland to no one. The Canyon belongs to itself,
to the world, to God, for whatever those grand abstractions are
worth. And so far as the term "possession" has meaning,
it would be more accurate to say that the Canyon possesses us. Those
who love it are possessed by it. We belong to the Canyon, having
known it a little and loved it too much, as indeed all those who
love the land, who love the earth, belong to it and consign themselves
to it and finally return to it.
One of the penalties of an ecological education is
that one lives alone in a world of wounds. An ecologist must either
harden his shell and make believe that the consequences of science
are none of his business, or he must be the doctor who sees the
marks of death in a community that believes itself well and does
not want to be told otherwise.
The Round RiverA Parable, 1953
A sparkling waterfall cascades from the rim of a peaceful
and splashes into a topaz pool,
terraced with smooth walls of travertine.
A border of monkeyflower, maidenhair ferns,
infant toads, and poison ivy rings the pool,
And then quickly dissipates into the barren beauty of the desert.
This is the Grand Canyon.
America is a great story and there is a river on every page.
Let's remember that and dedicate ourselves to the great work
of restoring these rivers to health.