Sisters of St. Joseph of CarondeletOctober 22, 2019

Earth Concerns News

A Little Drip Takes a Trip by Sister Irene Kruse, CSJ

Listen! Hear me! Cold, cleansing, crashing, colliding, cascading crazily through crevices of rock; wandering fingers making wayward passes, kissing and caressing briefly shallow shores on my reckless surge to mating with the sea.

I=m a little drip beginning my trip down the Hudson River from Lake Tear of the Clouds in the Adirondacks, a lake about as big as a football field. Many other little drips join me to form a considerable trickle over the rocks and through the rills beginning this great waterway as it rushes to the Atlantic Ocean. The Native Algonquin Indians named the Hudson Muhheakunnuk, a river that flows two ways due to the push and pull of the tides.

At the start of our journey, we are crystal clear and pristine and people enjoy the sparkle and energy that our one cohesive force presents to those who enjoy riding our surface and swimming through the refreshing waves of the river.

I understand that a man named Henry Hudson discovered our waterway in 1609 and recognized its possibilities for shipping and trade. As a result, many cities, towns and hamlets have settled along its shores and have, as a result, threatened our purity with the waste that is produced from factories and homes.

Through the thousands of years that little drips like myself have traveled this waterway, many humans have taken us for granted and forget, sometimes, that this planet is the only one of those discovered that holds us as a resource in such abundance. We may seem a little egotistical in placing such importance on a drip conglomerate, but let=s face it, we are the basic area from which all life eventually evolved onto land. The human brain is 75 percent water, blood 83 percent and bones 25 percent, and this is just considering the human species.

But, I digress by taking a few detours. The purpose of this little missive is to point out what I observe on my trip down this waterway. Aside from construction, polluted runoff and spills, downstream areas suffer from either dams or diversion canals which reduce the quantity of water reaching them and the amount reaching the sea, affecting ecosystems along the way. This causes serious environmental consequences on land and cutting off nutrients to the sea, resulting in the decline of fish populations. One cannot change a part without affecting the whole; this is a law of nature often ignored in the name of progress.

Three hundred fifteen miles from my source, I am nearing New York City and moving on to the southern tip of Manhattan, where we will empty into the Atlantic Ocean. This part of my trip is heavily cluttered and polluted. No longer do we drips sparkle and dance with life, but move in a cloudy, sluggish and despondent manner to merge with the ocean. Although the Clean Water Act of 1972 has helped, along with PCB dredging, more must be done to rejuvenate our passageway. It is scary to observe that one-third of U.S. rivers, one-half of U.S. estuaries and more than one-half of U.S. lakes are not fit for fishing or swimmingCnever mind drinking! Maybe someday, more forward-looking people will join the few already involved to raise the consciousness of the human species and work together to restore our pristine vitality before the situation reaches critical mass. Listen and learn!


May Water=s sacred rains

anoint you for your journey,

and her promised Rainbow

gleam through your darkness.

May Water=s Living Springs well up within you,

and her ancient Oceans

wash their Wisdom over you.

Blessings of Water to you!

CSister Jean Cather, snjm


(May 2006)