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As light comes outside my window this morning I wake up to the fact that what sounded like a truck or a train passing by (no tracks here though…) was the wind. It’s as if the tree in my sight line is keening after a tragedy – as well she might, given the destruction yesterday in the Midwestern states where winds reached 165 mph, leaving whole towns in a shambles. When we used to say that “March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb,” we never dreamed of that kind of extreme force. It was just a way to characterize the vicissitudes of mother nature trying to birth the season of spring. It seems that by now, with all the talk about climate change and the advances in science, we would be shouldering more responsibility toward “Sister Wind,” as St. Francis used to call her.

I am not a scientist, by any stretch of the imagination, but this morning I cannot ignore what is right before my eyes. I do not understand why we in the Northeast are so lucky as to be virtually unscathed by the weather events that have been happening in different parts of our country over the past year or two. I’m sitting here watching our tree struggle as the refrain of a 1960’s song plays in my mind: The wayward wind is a restless wind, a restless wind that yearns to wander, and he was born the next-of-kin…the next-of-kin to the wayward wind.

Call me silly, but what if we were to consider all of the natural world as our relatives – as St. Francis and the Native Americans always did? Would we perhaps take better care of our trees and rivers and fields and skies? Would we heed the environmentalists a bit more seriously and be more gentle on our walk through this world? It seems to me that all of this follows from my reflections of yesterday about the necessity of recognizing that even now we can open our hearts a bit wider to the possibility of the oneness of all that exists, thereby taking a bit more responsibility for our actions toward Earth, our home.