“I just can’t get the poetry of the trees”
As was visible from class on Wednesday, I was pretty frustrated with the Bohm reading and our conversation about it. I interrupted a bunch which is immature. I am sorry. I thought about Wednesday’s class when I was at my sit spot yesterday evening and into today. I think I’ve figured out two causes of my frustration:
1. The Bohm reading irritated me. I didn’t need Solnit to convince me that it is impossible to wholly represent the world, but if I did, she would have. I’ve accepted that I can’t do it, and I’ve moved on to what I see as the most important kind of environmental work: being a part of community. I think Bohm should move on too. Our inability to explain things the way they actually are is not a deficit. This is what makes our representations precious. It’s why we need other people and the trees and the birds and it's especially why we need the scary Daddy Longlegs. It’s why we need community. It’s impressive that Bohm divined a new way to use language. It’s grossly offensive and amusingly pitiful that he thinks the rheomode offers a complete/accurate way to represent the world. Personally, I can’t get past feeling offended, so it is hard for me to see value in his work. I’m sure it’s there. Help me?
2. Having class outside is not working for me. At first, I was excited to have class outside. I love being outside! I’m realizing now that I should not mix school and outside. Even though we’re physically outside of the classroom, the standards for our performance in discussions haven’t changed. I spent a lot of time on Wednesday in class wondering what the blue jay was squawking about, and what the red tailed hawk was hunting for, and why it got so quiet in the last 15 minutes of class. There were times when I had to look at my hands to keep them from picking at the grass and building log cabins with the twigs on the ground. All the while, I felt guilty for not paying attention the way I am supposed in class. If we’re expecting the same kind of attention to discussion as we do in other classes, then I think we should move inside. If we’re expecting something different from discussion in this class, then I think we need to go over the rules.
the title of this post is taken from p. 40 of one of my favorite books Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson.