Leopold on pumphouse up Millcreek Canyon, Moab
Aldo Leopold talks about farming, about our responsibility, about the dynamic earth we walk on everyday.
"There is, as yet, no sense of pride in the husbandry of wild plants and animals, no sense of shame in the proprietorship of a sick landscape. We tilt windmills in belief of conservation in convention halls and editorial offices, but on the back forty we disclaim even owning a lance."
"There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace."
"Land, then, is not merely soil; it is a fountain of energy flowing through a circuit of soils, plants, and animals. ... The circuit is not closed; some energy is dissipated in decay, some is added by absorption from the air, some is stored in soils, peats, and long-lived forests; but it is a sustained circuit, like a slowly augmented revolving fund of life. ... When a change occurs in one part of the circuit, many other parts must adjust themselves to it. Change does not necessarily obstruct or divert the flow of energy; evolution is a long series of self-induced changes, the net result of which has been to elaborate the flow mechanism and to lengthen the circuit. Evolutionary changes, though, are usually slow and local. Man's invention of tools has enabled him to make changes of unprecedented violence, rapidity, and scope." (p. 254-255)