Friday, February 23, 2018

Trees over 150 years being destroyed in east Trinidad

 I am not sure if I am writing this letter for you, for me or for Joe Public, but I feel it needs to be said.

This is about the destruction of hundreds of trees on one of the most beautiful pieces of land in east Trinidad. Trees that have been here for over 150 years; samaan, silk cotton, poui, shade trees of all different shapes and sizes with a wide variety of leaves, seeds and pods. All beautiful, majestic, peaceful, swaying in the breeze. Providing us with oxygen to breathe and preserving and stabilising the land with their extensive root systems by absorbing the rainfall from the Northern Range. Empowering us with their energy; giving us time to dream dreams, letting us know “we are children of the universe; no less than the trees and the stars, we have a right to be here.”

“Suburbia is where the developers bulldoze all the trees and then name the streets after them.”

The plan is to cut down all of these amazing trees and erect houses — with not a tree in sight. Nothing will be left to absorb the water that floods this land in the rainy season. No drainage. No wider roads for the additional traffic. No sewerage system. No parks for recreation. No food for the soul. Nowhere for our spirits to soar. Nowhere for Papa Bois to roam!

Shelter, food, employment are all necessary. But we also need to nourish our spirit and worship our Creator. Peace and tranquillity are found among trees and open spaces. In overcrowded communities we can’t respect or appreciate each other’s space or place.

What is going to happen to the next generation? And the next? If this is how we disrespect nature — and ourselves — what will there be left for them?

“Your children come through you, not from you.”

“You may house their bodies, but not their souls.

“You will find something more in the woods than books; trees and stones will teach you that which you can never learn from masters.”

Are we looking only at the outside of everything and not at the God in every living thing... and in all of us?”

Please, let us think this through well before we do anything drastic and destroy this part of God’s — and our — green earth.

G de Freitas