Lucy Maud Montgomery has a way with words.
“In what ethereal dances,
By what eternal streams”
Oh, why does it hurt when you look at nature? Why do the most beautiful things hurt? How can pain be so pleasurable? Is it because one knows the beauty will fade, or is it because one knows they might not see it again?
After having devoured ‘Pat of Silver Bush’, a beautiful novel penned by L. M. Montgomery, my heart has been broken into tiny, little pieces, gently mended back by lovely descriptions of nature and wildlife. Pat Gardiner, the protagonist, loves her family home, Silver Bush, more than anything else, no matter in morning rose or blue crystal night. But such love for a place is only found in fiction… and so rarely in reality. While Pat wishes every flower in her garden a good night before retiring to slumber, we scatter our rubbish on our roseate grounds. While Pat cries when a single old tree is cut down, we casually throw paper balls into bins, trying to beat our rival in a murderous version of basketball. And while Pat basks in autumnal sunshine and bathes in delicious, silver moonshine, we sit in our cars, looking up at the grey skies before remarking ‘oh, there goes good ol’ climate change again!’. Not all of us do that of course, but some do… and that’s enough for Mother Nature to be hit by an inevitable, fatal cancer.
Remember, remember the 3rd of March! The whole ‘remember, remember’ thing is usually used for students to remember about the Gunpowder Plot, but that’s not the point. What I am asking you to do is remember a day that celebrates wildlife! World Wildlife Day, celebrated annually on the 3rd of March.
Now, though Pat Gardiner loathes history, I am sure, fellow reader, you don’t, so let me entertain you with some…
On 20th December 2013, at the United Nations General Assembly, (much more conveniently known as UNGA), the 68th session produced a fruitful result… the proclamation of World Wildlife Day! On every 3rd of March, this day is celebrated to support the conserving and recovering of species and our beloved ecosystem. This year’s theme for World Wildlife Day is ‘recovering key species for ecosystem restoration’, and focuses on conserving endangered species of wild flora and fauna, and to quickly invent and implement more solutions to protect them.
As claimed by the IUCN (short for the International Union for Conservation of Nature), over 8400 species of wild flora and fauna are in critical condition, and are dangerously endangered. In case, fellow reader, you did not realise, without these species, life on Earth is threatened. Just like how when one leaves, its departure threatens its loved ones’ joy. Not only do global economies depend on wildlife, our
many more things
Long story short, the absence of wildlife will be felt severely by humanity.
Thus, this year, World Wildlife Day strives to push the debate towards the importance of mitigating the fate of endangered species, in the hopes to protect habitats and biodiversity and promote sustainability.
Oh, but what can I do on World Wildlife Day?
Warning: The following suggestion has been repeated by many authors, written by many pens, typed on many keyboards. On World Wildlife Day, well, you can… use your voice.
At first, it seems awfully over-suggested and might be challenging to some, using your voice offers many advantages indeed. You know… at first, Pat Gardiner hated change, and when it came for her Aunt Hazel to be married, she sobbed over it for a week… till she got caught up in the excitement, saw her delightful flower-girl dress and after a while, couldn’t imagine her aunt not being married! It goes to show that there is always a bright side to everything. When you use your voice, there will always be an echo (figuratively) and that echo can spread further than you think. There are more than 7 billion people in this world, so there will always be plenty more to influence! The more conscious people are, the better the world.
Additionally, you can use your voice in many ways. You can protest for change with a loudspeaker or you can write articles about the environment or you can quietly spread awareness through texts or posters. Whatever way you choose, note that a little goes a long way. Similar to how the glittering brook near Silver Bush leads to many oceans.
Moving on, you can also get to know more about the species in your area. Which of them are facing threats? Are there any initiatives working on this issue? You can either familiarise yourself with the efforts and solutions being led by conservationists or the community or initiate something yourself! A school event? A fundraiser? A social media campaign? Where does your mind take you?
If you want to know what the UN is doing, join the World Wildlife Day 2022 Virtual Global event: https://wildlifeday.org/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/WWD2022_Preliminary_Agenda_v6.pdf
Pat Gardiner was as much friends with Silver Bush as she was with Bets Wilcox or Hilary “Jingles” Gordon. We must remember to be friends with our home too. For though we might feel as if we don’t belong anywhere… we always belong in the world… as much as Pat belonged in Silver Bush.
Silver Bush is the world, the residing Gardiners are its 7.9 billion citizens, and just like how Judy Plum (the housekeeper) might say, the Gardiners always put their duty first!