Monday, October 27, 2008

Have we not learned...






At what price will we eventually learn that what we disregard today, will come back to haunt us tomorrow. Scratchy and I took a drive yesterday, hoping to capture the last vestiges of a summer, but by the end of the day, I was moved to write about the tragedies I saw intertwined with the glorious visions of Iowa farmland.
Along side the beautiful autumn trails, my path led to a hog confinement breeding facility. Now the thing that disturbs me the most, is the fact that this is placed in what they call 'the bottoms'.
This is directly above a nature preserve, a wetland, set aside for waterfowl and upland game bird breeding. I have seen flocks of wild turkey and whitetail deer in abundance among said farmers corn fields, to which massive amounts of herbicide and pesticides are lavished on the crops and drain directly into the sanctuary through drainage ditches.


Now if this isn't disturbing enough, let's toss in a coal fired mass electrical producing, polluting machine. I once lived near this fire-breathing dragon. They say it doesn't pollute, but why did my new white shingles turn dark grey after only a year...mercury dust perhaps and we all (I hope) know what a small amount of mercury will pollute in the river nearby. Did I mention that a Monsanto plant only a mile away...so let's not go into the purple soil and nature preserve that Monsanto shares with this power plant...perhaps to monitor it's toxic effects on the surroundings...hmmm...


But the topping on the cake, is the 'black storm', reticent of the dustbowl days...oh really...have we not learned from past farming experiences. If you look real close, you can see a barn and out-buildings in the shot. This happens every year on what is called 'the island', which is where I live, although I live next to the bluff, which is a ways from the river. The Island is the Mississippi river bottom, a huge, flat area protected by highly maintained levee systems. Perfect for growing potatoes, melons and veggies of all sorts, corn and soybeans. It is a sandy soil that drains quickly and needs irrigation systems or it will dry up, as sand naturally does. This black cloud was blowing for miles and happens every fall...does he not see his topsoil setting it's mark for the river and perhaps he wonders why the Mississippi is so full of topsoil, silted away by the prevailing winds...could it be the almighty dollar that pushes man to forget...


We all pay for this neglect...sooner or later...

7 comments:

willow said...

Sad. But your opening picture is lovely and looks just like the Iowa farm road Robert Kincaid drives his truck down in Bridges of Madison County!

Gallery Juana said...

A nature preserve which is a few hours from my hometown in California has the same problems with toxic run-off from the farms.

Roses and Lilacs said...

I'm afraid it's a fact of modern life that will not change. Until those interested in conservation can contribute as much money to politicians as big business does, our small voice will not be heard.
Marnie

cconz said...

thanks again sharon for the telling like it is. But, it is amazing the things that can happen when PEOPLE join together as 1 BIG voice. Sure money is a big issue but, People banding together to make a change can move mountains. People get complasant or there's nothing i can do about it. Because they think it's not affecting me directly. (But it is)Only when there kids start dying of cancer and all other things dry up will people do something.Then it will be to late.

Richiesliv DÅ och NU said...

So, scary that the space age toke over our old ways.

Wherever we go, we all have the same problem that really scares me.

Hope many of us take some actions. Little but always act, do you think?

Greyscale Territory said...

I am quite sure all of us could add other examples of poor land management.

In Australia, our worst example has been evolving over at least 10 years into the last stages of "a hopeless case". And yet, it has taken till this year for the government to take notice and really talk seriously about doing something.

I talk of the tragic drying up of our "mighty?" Murray River system which travels through 3 states to the sea. Irrigation has sucked this power house of beauty totally dry. Boats that used to to ply the river sit usely on dry sandbanks. Water creatures are barely visible. They know!

Now the Murray can give no more. And we still don't have enough water.

As you say, "Have we not learned?"

High Desert Diva said...

No...the greedy being that is man does not learn.