A Reflection on Wilderness by Washington Wild volunteer, Avery Meeker
As a student of both Environmental Science and Sociology at the University of Washington, wilderness to me represents a place of many memories and is the perfect example of the absence of human society. Separated from the social constructs of the city, wilderness doesn't follow the typical beat of societies drum. Wilderness is a land where natural systems write the laws and humans relinquish their power. Yet we give agency to its existence, we have feelings for it and we fight for its protection as if it is part of our families. And our home is exactly what wilderness is. Its harmonies serenade us when we listen with open ears, its colors beg to be observed, and its body breathes with the changing of the seasons. This wilderness constantly entices its viewer to pull out their binoculars and focus in on its majesty. In nature there is little control, which intrigues me beyond belief; it makes me yearn to understand its systems, to glimpse under it’s feathers and to search for its skin.
From my experiences as a volunteer at Washington Wild and as a student who resides in the beautiful cascade lowlands, I have learned the problems we face as stewards of the land are all within our own power to solve. The only one guarding the solution is societies’ own lack of recognition and motivation. We maintain the control over this shared destiny and it is encouraging to know Washington Wild is helping lead this movement. Each and every one of us must pull out our binoculars to search within our communities and ourselves for the answers. Sometimes the costs may seem personal and like a burden; however, I would contend there is no burden to knowing you are doing what is in your own power. We also must understand the rewards are broad, and will serve every generation yet to come. If we can fight these barriers we have imagined the rewards will be felt forever. From its wondrous skylines to its never-ending symphony, this home will always be most recognized by the warriors of the wild.