|Derelict boxcars on abandoned railroad|
sunken into mud of delta at head of Lake Red Rock,
now a wildlife management area
|Compassplant on hill prairie overlooking farmland|
along Upper Iowa River, northeast Iowa
And the windsong in Iowa? Could we ever recreate a place big enough, quiet enough, and wild enough to hear that “background sound of silence”? Could we muster the collective will to restore a “ringing of the spheres”? I don’t know, but even if that utopian endpoint remains elusive, rebuilding a landscape with wildness near at hand would be its own reward. And perhaps - if we are bold, creative, patient, and lucky - our restored landscape will find a renewed voice.
This is the final part of a four-part essay on Wildness in Iowa; the series starts with "Windsong" .
Sources of quotes appearing in essay
5) Gladys Black, “White Pelican” in Iowa Birdlife, 1992, University of Iowa Press, Iowa City, IA.
7) Gerry Rowland, posting on DesMoinesRiver.org website.
9) Archie Carr, “The Big Cypress Swamp” in The Everglades, 1973, Time-Life Books, New York, NY.