The Earth is Not the World … Yet

The day does not begin with land. It is only part of the day because it was there from before and its motion allows the day to open.

And we say this, we say: “a day on Earth.”

No “Earth” involved.

Note the colour shift below, as this day closes again.

Big Bar Lake

The Earth remains dark. As always, it is the night. Humans only see the light.


No human has ever seen the chasm, or the Earth for that matter, but the day, ah, yes.

Big Bar Marsh

Yes, that we can see… or can we? Is sight not the touch of photons of light to receptors in the eye? Is the touch of fingers to soil not the same? Is that what a day is on Earth? Touch?

Do we not say that? Do we not say: “I am touched by beauty.”? Do we not mean something we can’t touch but which is “almost there” or “from another world.” I think we do, if we understand that Earth and World are not synonyms. World is revolving set of associations and energies, like the gravity well of the sun, and especially a social relationship. Earth is far less human yet.

Or not. Is its untouchability, its darkness, its holding-to-itself not the balancing point that makes a world possible? I think it is. Here’s an irony:

Big Bar Lake

If you’re going to become Indigenous, then “world” and “Earth” must become the same, but in a new power balance, in which neither word means anything anymore and a third term arises, which speaks of this union. For a long time, agriculture has provided this point of balance. It can again, if the esker below (for example) is allowed to be an agricultural site:

Not plowed. Not planted. Just as it is. This is the lesson that settlement has taught us all, if we take the time to listen: “changing the land” is settlement, and unifying the Earth with the world; “changing ourselves” is reversing that, to unify the world with the Earth. It’s time.

We are not farming chokecherries so much as farming ourselves. It’s as simple as watching each day come in at the speed of the turning Earth.

And “turning into it.”

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