It started with trees. Their splintering deaths for our endless needs disturbed and unsettled something inside of me. I chanted reduce, reuse, recycle. Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. But no one seemed to care. Then, it was the air. I saw stifling hazes draped across cityscapes, and swelling plumes of pollution that streaked the sky. I’d look to my feet, imagining I could see the pores of rocks deep beneath, see the water and toxins slowly creep.
One day, I found a thread, a thread that trailed through trees and down to their roots and flapped in the air: climate change. It didn’t seem so big with only a glimpse. I followed the thread, feeling it must end around the next bend.
But the thread is heaping in my hands, and my eyes trace the ground like a hunter with his hound. The more thread I see and hold, the more I know. I stop my hunt, my ceaseless search, and look up and around me.
The thread is everywhere.
It’s looped and knotted around all the people I see. It is wound around the trees, tied to snowflakes and flames, lacing through the news, and tethered to the shoes of politicians that shake it off then stumble on it again. It coils around me and snares my mind as I attempt to unwind this thread that holds everything together. I gather people around me, pointing out the thread that has caught on their hair, trailing behind their cars, stuck to their shirt. Look, I tell them. Look.