You have probably already seen this beautiful video – The Great Realization, by British poet Tom Roberts. I heard about from my brother-in-law James, who lives in Victoria, B.C., during our family’s virtual Sunday evening gathering. Then my cousin, Michele from Biarritz, France, sent it to me this morning. So clearly it is getting around, kind of like a…virus.
I started to imagine- what if?
What if we all started to imagine that this Great Realization was real.
What if we all wanted it so badly that we made it become real?
What if we travelled less, and appreciated and looked after our local communities more?
What if some of the planes and cruise ships and cars were no longer needed, and we continued to need less oil.
What if the drilling rigs were repurposed to produce geo-thermal power, and our coal plants could shut down?
What if we realized that we like this slower, more spacious life, and learned that less is more?
What if we continued to use technology to brings us all together, and spread love and hope around the world?
What if we refused to go back?
It was a world of waste and wonder, of poverty and plenty.
Back before we understood that hindsight is 20/20.
You see, the people came up with companies to trade across all lands
But they swelled and got much bigger than we ever could have planned.
We’d always had our wants, but now it got so quick
You could have anything you’d dreamed of, in a day, and with a click.
We noticed families had stopped talking, that’s not to say they never spoke
But the meaning must have melted, and the work-life balance broke.
And the children’s eyes grew square, and every toddler had a phone.
They filtered out the imperfection, but amid the noise, they felt alone.
And every day the skies grew thicker, until you couldn’t see the stars.
So we flew in planes to find them, while down below we filled our cars.
We’d drive all day in circles. We’d forgotten how to run.
We swapped the grass for tarmac, shrunk the parks till they were none.
We filled the sea with plastic because our waste was never capped,
Until each day, when you went fishing, you’d pulled them out, already wrapped.
And while we drank, and smoking, and gambled, our leaders taught us why
It’s best to not upset the lobbies. More convenient, to die.
But then in 2020, a new virus came our way.
The governments reacted and told us all to hide away.
But while we all were hidden, amongst the fear, and all the while
People dusted off their instincts and remembered how to smile.
They started clapping to say thank you, and calling up their mums
And while the car keys gathered dust, they looked forward to their runs.
And with the skies less full of voyagers, the skies began to breathe.
And the beaches bore new wildlife that skuttled off into the seas.
Some people started dancing, some were singing, some were baking.
We’d grown so used to bad news, but some good news was in the making.
So when we found the cure and were allowed to go outside,
We all preferred the world we found, to the world we left behind.
Old habits became extinct, and they made way for the new.
And every simple act of kindness was now given its due.
Why did it take a virus to bring the people back together?
Sometimes you’ve got to get sick, before you start feeling better.
So lie down and dream of tomorrow, and all the things that we can do.
And who knows, if you dream hard enough, maybe some of them will come true.
We now call it, The Great Realization, and yes, since then, there have been many.
But that’s the story of how it started, and how hindsight is 20/20.