A Mother’s Admonishment
My dear Sons and Daughters,
I hold up monstrous mountains, encompass fresh forests, create wondrous waterfalls and provide habitats to every creature known and unknown. However, most importantly I make it so that you can live within me without any complaints. I want you to be living so happily without any problems. Although it does not seem that way to me. Have you realized how much trouble you have put me through and how much you have made me suffer?
I for long wished our relationship—me and you—would be as never-ending as time itself and both of our feelings and thoughts would unite. But recently I feel as if I’m the only one who is giving, and you seem to be only receiving my affection without any hope of returning it. If anything has been returned it has been in an utterly awful manner, harming my lungs, giving me constant aches and oh so much I can not bare to explain.
Recently I have been feeling quite sick; I think I might have a fever. My entire body surface is burning up! All the gigantic glaciers that would compliment the peaks of steep mountains are now being melted into thick rivers causing avalanches and floods to all those who live in narrow valleys, houses are being destroyed, cattle and innocent lives are suffering, oh so many lost homes and businesses. Some of you move around like nomads for shelter, and my heart… my heart feels like it will shatter. Everything taken away by tsunami-like floods. Especially in 2022 when Pakistan suffered such a great loss. I really don’t want to turn into my sister Mars. Eventually devoid of this life-giving concoction —water.
Ouch! I think I also have lung problems. I feel such pain in my lungs. Was it because you were camping too close to the forest? Did you not know that you should put the fires out after you’re done with using them? But here we are, with half of the tall trees reduced to chalk-grey ash. They themselves scream their heart out begging for mercy. Do tell me what will I say to them? Did you not know that in 2018, California suffered 8257 wildfires which ignited flames of amber and crimson, burning 19000 homes and incinerating 85 of you, my children? Despite all this you blame me for causing wildfires.
Do you remember how I told you that trees in my soil would benefit you? Sometimes I feel as if you are so lucky that you can help yourself to freshly made oxygen. However, I am not sure your very interested in what I had to offer you since you easily chop off your only source of survival! You have filled the last of my remaining lungs with thick grey smog. I remember the time when the trees stood proud touching the stars, how beautiful blossoms filled fields with color.
Alas! Reality struck. My green grasses are filled with chemicals unknown, my habitable position is now contaminated. The air once filled with white, soft, cotton clouds is now dusty, thick, unclean. Have you forgotten April 2020, when Lahore was struck with the worst case of smog due to nitrogen oxides from vehicles and factory emissions? It was you, my children, who covered the entire city with a new skin that I had neither asked for nor needed. Suffocating smog spread in such a way that my lungs got choked. The trees that were supposed to take in the carbon dioxide you now only use to make unnecessary wooden crafts, furniture and paper which you later waste.
I somehow find it so funny: the fact that you so easily put the blame on me saying how I was angry with you and caused all this but in reality, it was you who was always taking advantage of me. You have no idea how much I care for you, my children.
If you keep this up soon you will not be able to breathe. Soon you will not be able to save me as my health is slowly getting worse. Soon you will not be able to change me into the paradise you deserve. Soon greed will have caused such environmental devastation that the life support systems will be beyond repair. Then when that time comes, I feel as it there will be no difference between me and sister Mars. I’m the only home for now and into eternity.
Lahore Air Quality Index (AQI) and Pakistan Air Pollution.Retrieved from IQAirhttps://www.iqair.com
2018 California Wildfires – Census Bureau. (8 October 2021). Retrieved from https://www.census.gov › topics › preparedness › events
Tazmeen Aqeel (IG3)
Future World School & College