About Ecological Reflections

Poking up from the ground
barely above my knees,
already there’s holiness
in their coiled roots.
Though harsh frost
has whitened the hundred grasses,
deep in the courtyard,
one grove of green!
In the late night
long-legged spiders stir;
crickets are calling
from the empty stairs.
A thousand years from now
who will stroll among these trees,
fashioning poems on their
ancient dragon shapes?

These lines were penned by the Chinese poet and mystic Ch’i Chi, who lived from 864-937. “A thousand years from now,” he mused, who shall fashion poems as he did; who will reflect on the spiders and crickets and pines of the world as he knew it?

Well, we will. You will.

And as we recognize the poets who wrote about the calling crickets a thousand years ago, so shall we, too, keep in mind those who will write about that which catches our eyes, ears, hearts and minds in ten, one hundred, and one-thousand years from now.

As the lepidopterist and writer Robert Michael Pyle wrote in his essay “The Long Haul” Haul”(written during his residency at the H.J. Andrews Long Term Ecological Reflections program):  “Maybe looking to the future is a way of hoping there will still be something to see when we get there. Maybe it’s the only way to make sure of it.”