In my hand was one of those folding extended reach tools, which I call a “picker.” Out in Choctaw I always kept one for picking blackberries and sand plums. Around here it’s now used as a trash picker. In my other hand was a recycled t-shirt bag. One of the occasional contractors was sitting on the dropped down tailgate of his truck and asked me, “Why don’t you pick up the sticks?”
I replied, “Sticks and leaves may look tacky to some, but they belong on the ground. Trash does not.”
He pressed further: “Who decides what is trash and what isn’t?”
Spreading my laden hands, I said, “Nature decides.”
“Oh, so you think you talk to nature?” It was slightly derisive in tone.
“The point here is that nature talks to me and tells me what needs to go.” I wore my disarming half-smile.
“I don’t hear anything,” he said with a grin.
“I’m willing to hear, so nature speaks loud enough for me. Maybe some day you’ll learn to hear it, too.” I turned and resumed my task.
That’s how it works. I don’t trust my intellect for the task; it’s not as if the Green eco-nuts know anything. All it takes is just a few minutes listening to their passionate arguments and you realize they have no clue about the heart-mind, and so no clue about what constitutes pollution. It’s all human intellect and emotion. Leave it up to them and they’ll rip up the asphalt and concrete, ban all cars (except their special eco-buggies), and make us live in tiny boxes up on stilts — no plumbing or electricity.
That might be “natural,” but it’s not realistic. Further, Creation doesn’t demand that. It handles things pretty well around here, but seems to appreciate a little daily attention to remove the contemptuous garbage left by utterly mindless butt-heads. Nor do I confront them with yelling about having to pick up their garbage. That would be pointless until they can listen with their hearts, as well. Laws certainly don’t stop them, nor do threats of fines from the apartment complex management.
No, the whole point is that nature calls to me and asks for my help. I can’t say “no.” Nature knows already what is fair and just, and knows that I am one of the few who hears its cries. Communion with Creation is its own reward.