Aiden’s Climate Story


Aiden Sanxhaku


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19136

How are you sensing climate change?

Perhaps I should have noticed sooner. The grass no longer enchants with its green. The flowers no longer possess the charming allure to attract the eyes of wandering bees. The wind no longer harbors the sounds of laughter, tranquility, and joy it once had. No, there’s a much more bleak cadence. Instead, it now resonates through empty cans and bottles: the jilted wind-chimes of the creek— an ecosystem that rots from its inside. I had once liked to think of the motion of the water as the rhythmic beating of a heart— the heart of our creek. With each passing of a rock, splash of a falling object, or sip from a nearby animal, a pulse. The throbbing of a flame that spoke to me, to the nearby animals and citizens alike, and to those that came before. Perhaps they just weren’t able to hear it, those who unknowingly tainted this rhythm; jolted the flow of this metronome, so much so that it hasn’t been able to retain its tempo. Maybe they were too caught up in the triviality of the world around them to notice what kept this world in rhythm. That which helped us slow down at difficult passages, while keeping the pace consistent when times were well. I wonder where the birds had flown off to–if they’d been able to adapt to the changes. Do they feel any sadness for their previous stepping-ground? Sometimes I think to myself, if we had only listened hard enough and cared hard enough, maybe we too would understand their story.

How do these changes make you feel?

The sheer contrast–from a once familiar, blissful environment I had become so naively accustomed to in my youth–has put me in a position of reconciliation. A position of longing. But even more so, a position of dejection. Were people aware of just how significant a toll their actions have on their surrounding environments? Would anything have changed if they were? Internally, what petrifies me the most is the notion they were indeed conscious, and yet still choose to neglect their actions. And now, every brisk summer evening as I walk to the banks of the Pennypack Pack, I am no longer caught by the auditory smiles of birds or even the influence of the green grass. No, I feel a chilling nudge of what has passed–and what is to come in an ecosystem being dismantled in all directions.

Philadelphia, Pennnsylvania 19136

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