To The Editor,

As I read last week’s editorial “What we ignore adds up to a decision to do nothing”, it corresponded perfectly to a prophetic and poetic piece I was reading, written by Joan Sutherland, Roshi. She wrote:

“When the foundation stone for Notre-Dame de Paris was laid in 1163, everyone – architects to stonemasons – knew they’d be working on something they wouldn’t live to see completed, nor would their children or grandchildren. They couldn’t be certain the engineering would hold, or what the light, filtered through rose windows into a stone glade, would be like.

“It took a century to build Notre-Dame, and it looks as though it will take about the same amount of time to end the world as we’ve known it. Deep in a climate emergency, those of us who could do something about it can’t seem to muster the collective will to respond.

“If just for a moment we considered not our aspirations or our fears but what we’re actually doing, it looks as though we can’t hold up our end of the relationship anymore. Perhaps after all, the story we’re in isn’t primarily about us; perhaps it was always the story of the Earth. Perhaps the earth’s dreaming of us is fading away and because her dream is such a very long one and we are so fleeting, we don’t know it yet. Is that why we’re having such a hard time dreaming ourselves into the future? We can’t seem to stop ourselves from causing harm. Are we, as a species, worn out?”

She concludes: “And if, some aeon far in the future, humans emerge again from the waters to walk upon the land, the cultures that are like fungi and grizzlies will be the first to return, and with any luck, that’s where it will stay for a very long time”.

The title: ‘Dreaming the Invisible’, written by Joan Sutherland on Earth Day, 2019.

ian hepburn, Vankleek Hill