I am going to try, such as I am able at this time, to express part of the whole realization that dawned upon me after waking from a dream. I hope I can communicate this simply and clearly to you, without any undue emotionalism.
I had a strange dream last night. In the dream, I was at home for the Winter Break. The mild December weather, green grass, and leafy trees weren't what was strange about it, though. I was unsettled by the development around my mother's house. My mother's house used to be my great aunt Ruth's house, and it was built and rebuilt near the long, forested peak of the Hill of Boisdale. The house and the whole community of Upper Leitches Creek is surrounded by fens and the so-called "Appalachian Forest," although it is located on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Canada.
I believe all attempts to certify her family's hectarage to be thwarted by topography. My mother's family would have lived out there on the Upper Leitches Creek Road for seven generations, but in reality, she has sold the house since moving down to Halifax. She sold the house, but kept the land.
In my dream, there was another asphalt road or two cleared from where trees had been, and there were new houses. They were tacky and pretentious, in contrast to the typical Nova Scotian home, which is a monotone box, with tiny rectangular windows, that lacks pretension intentionally, consciously, and by design.
The steep slope between the new roads was covered with turf. This unsettled me. Even though I was not lucid in this dream - even though I didn't know that I was dreaming - I could feel the wrongness of it all inside. Like worms or being inhabited by demons.
I spoke with two old women in my dream (without any lucidity). I said to them that, although it was so sad that the forest was cut down, it was good that there was a bus to town, for my mother to visit her children, who work in the city. I type these last words with horror, because that isn't how I think about things! I really love the forest dearly. I could say that, more than any other thing, I want it protected.
The real horror of this dream unfolded, however, as I woke up. Although my eyes opened and I sat up in my bed, a mysterious understanding dawned upon me. The objects of my bedroom surrounding me seemed to be thrust forward, each proof of the nightmarish totality of our "evolutionary trap." I saw a box of Tobasco Sauce on my desk, and it seemed like an artifact of a degenerate, spiteful, and careless industry. And of course it really was and is.
Development, and what could be called progress, and the establishment in which we live, immerse us spitefully in artificiality that is only the reassembled defiled and dead remains of eliminated landscapes, eliminated homes, and communities of living things that have been erased from existence. This is the nightmare that industrial capitalism makes of our desires for development and career ambitions.