There is a thing in me still dreams of trees.
But let it go. Homesick for moderation,
Half the world's artists shrink or fall away.
If any find solution, let him tell it.
Meanwhile I bend my heart toward lamentation
Where, as the times implore our true involvement,
The blades of every crisis point the way.
~ Mary Oliver, A Dream of Trees
Alongside this cluster, crews are hard at work clearing an endless stretch for a pipeline to carry fracked gas from Pennsylvania to refineries on the other side of New Jersey, for refinement and export.
I don't know how to describe the sense of raw physical violation this scene engenders.
She really seemed to believe it too.
Last summer, Dmitri Orlov wrote an essay called Fragility and Collapse; Slowly at first, then all at once. He points out that it is simple to predict collapse - say, that a bridge will someday fall. Of course it will. But to say exactly when is impossible. However, it is possible to make an educated guess based on the rate of deterioration, particularly when a linear change becomes exponential....assuming it remains exponential when, theoretically, it could return to linear at least for a time.
In the case of trees dying from air pollution though, I think it's safe to say a linear decline has gone exponential over the past few years, which is highly unlikely to slow down. Whatever synergy is fueling the deterioration - between ozone and pathogen attacks, especially fungus - it shows no sign of abating. Unfortunately, simultaneously with the degradation of the landscape seems to be our ability to not look at it. Any recent video - a movie, a commercial, a television show - that has trees in the background reveals visible symptoms of decay, and yet it goes unremarked upon. Take for example the excellent new movie, Salmon Confidential. In the very first opening moments, we see a leaf that has classic necrotic injury floating in the water with the fish. For an Ozonista as immersed in the documented visible foliar symptoms of damage as me, this sort of bizarre coincidence can only be hysterically funny.
Mostly, we see pines that are bleached white and missing needles, but there are shots of deciduous trees with thin crowns and bare branches as well.
We already knew that democracy in the US is hopelessly corrupted, but to see the dire consequences unfold in this one corner of the world, knowing that so many other facets of modern life are equally fouled, is daunting to say the least.their website. Enjoy the film!
Salmon Confidential from Twyla Roscovich on Vimeo.