One Writer's Vision
from Eleyne-Mari Sharp
It's late November and the leaves are still falling.
Although I have lived through sixty-plus autumns, this natural process always saddens me because I know the falling leaves are a metaphor for death. Truth is, I'm not ready to write my bucket list but there is one dream I've had for years, a project that is taking shape as I write this. And it gives back to the trees.
On New Year's Day, I will introduce FIRST WRITE™, a 24-hour writing marathon for writers. The purpose of this worldwide challenge is twofold: to create new works and to raise donations for tree planting organizations.
As a writer, it would be impossible to calculate all the paper I have used over the years. I'm not just talking about the paper that goes into the printer, but also the packaging for pens, printer's ink, and mailing supplies. Oh, and let's not forget all the equipment manuals, notepads, and cartons of my printed books, too. Writers need trees, that's obvious.
In my book, Inn Lak'ech: A Journey to the Realm of Oneness, teenager Elm Sunday has a special relationship with a wise pine tree named Miss Vi. The girl even gets to transform into a tree, marveling at her new roots shooting deep into the soil and the butterflies tickling her arm-like branches.
"Like you, we are all one being, all light and all connected," Miss Vi explained. "And we are all creators, Elm. That is the real magic. So I ask you to reconsider your choices very carefully. Be mindful of what you create or there may be dire consequences which you are not equipped to handle."
Can you imagine a world without trees? Dr. Seuss did and it wasn't pretty. Did you know that over 500 pounds of paper are used by the average United States citizen each year? And 80,000 acres of forests disappear from the Earth every day!
Every human being has a connection to trees—we depend upon them for oxygen, shade, shelter, food, furnishings, musical instruments, warmth, beauty, solace, and inspiration.
This Thanksgiving, when you "gather together" at your (presumably) wooden table, please remember to thank the trees and consider donating to the tree-planting organization of your choice. (See list here.) We may be unable to replace all the tree resources we have used since birth, but at least we can leave a leafy legacy for future generations to enjoy!
As The Lorax said: “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not.”