i wonder sometimes about how broken our planet is, how terribly injured. i grew up near love canal, only 10 miles away or so, and as a young married woman chose to move away partially because home was polluted. terribly so. i lived in dallas, then louisville, then ended up in star lake, a tiny hamlet in the adirondacks. just down the road was benson mines, an iron ore strip mine, abandoned, with huge slag piles all around. there was plenty of ugliness around those heaps of reddish rocks. and more than ugliness. a few years later i moved to this old farmhouse, around 30 miles away. and have had the privilege of finding a home that is moderately safe. i now live not so far from some pretty toxic spots, an alcoa plant, a gm plant, a corning plant. most obvious are dairy farms that spread huge amounts of liquid manure.
and yet i live in a rich ecosystem, a place that sustains me emotionally, physically. i am very lucky, here i could grow most of my food (if i so choose) to live well. there is wild food, too, and the human population is low. (with the social problems of such places of isolation). it is beautiful with a harsh northern beauty that is not for everyone. this landscape of foothills to the ancient adirondacks is suited to me. i have found home.
Finding beauty in a broken world is creating beauty in the world we find.--Terry Tempest Williams