A book sits on a shelf in my daughter’s room. It is age worn and obviously “loved” to almost tatters. A name is written in childish scrawl inside the front cover. The name is my name. When I gave this treasured book to my daughter, I warned her not to follow my bad example and mark up books like I did. I was four years old when I wrote that. I was inspired by the words contained the book and I still am today.
The book is “The Lorax” by Dr. Seuss. It was my very favorite book as a child. It remains that today. Dr. Seuss inspired me to be a writer. He challenged how I saw the world and delighted me with his rhyme and imagination. It was Seuss who sparked a lifelong love of the written word and in wordplay. I feel his influence in everything I write.
The Lorax is a brilliant children’s book written in rhyme by a master of the art. It’s message rings just as true today as when it was written in 1971.
For those who haven’t heard the story, I’ll brief you a bit; The Lorax is a cautionary tale on what happens when greed destroys the environment. The Lorax is the title character and of course, my ultimate favorite literary hero of all time.
The Lorax is described as “shortish. And oldish. And brownish. And mossy…..”
He appears on a stump and never lets up.
…..I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees. I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues….”
The Lorax speaks and speaks but no one listens. The story does not seem to end well as the last tree is cut down and the Lorax gets lifted away.
I would almost cry as I would reach the end and then…a ray of hope in the form of a seed on the last page. A promise for tomorrow and a chance to start again! My hopes would surge with a jolt of electricity every time I read that part.
I read that book probably hundreds of times. It shaped my thoughts about the environment and taught me how precious our national resources are. I learned a great lesson from that book. I taught this same lesson to my children. This love and respect for nature and all life.
This book is a classic but it is only a book. It is, however, based on a true story.
It is our story. Humankind: our stupid greed and our folly and our plain bad luck and maybe our eventual self-destruction.
Being a collector of quotes I stumbled upon this gem today and it is this quote that rekindled the flame that burns red-hot.
“America was once a paradise of timberland and stream but it is dying because of the greed and money lust of a thousand little kings who slashed the timber all to hell and would not be controlled and changed the climate and stole the rainfall from posterity.”
Don Marquis (1935)
For it is not my world or your world that is being threatened. The true consequences of our actions will not truly be felt until after we are gone. It is our children and their descendants that will inherit the mess we leave.
Some say that it is already too late to save the world. I beg to differ. It is up to all of us to speak for the trees. To speak for Mother Earth herself and all the wonderous life and abundance that remains. We cannot afford to be silent. Every voice added makes the cry louder and louder until one day it will be so loud that it will shake up the world.
Sometimes a great idea can start like a tiny seed. If it’s nourished and cared for and all the conditions are right, it can sprout and take form and grow into a mighty wonderous thing….it all starts with a seed.
Have a good day! Strawberryindigo.