I never wanted to be an activist. After working in the oil and gas industry for 12 years and finding that their ethical standards don’t match mine, I moved to 42 beautiful acres in Wise County, Texas where my sons, horses, and other animals could run wild and free. The dense post oak woods behind the house were home to all kinds of wildlife; the pasture in front had knee-high grass. A deep gully cut through the land adding to the romance and making a good hideout for deer, boys, and horses. The gully led to a pond surrounded by cottonwood trees with leaves that make a soft, comforting melody in the wind.
I loved the darkness and quiet at night. On nights when money worries displaced sleep, I could walk outside in my nightgown and see the Milky Way. It made my worries seem insignificant. We didn’t have money for entertainment, but we had the stars. During the day, we learned constellations by putting pinholes in construction paper taped to a window. At night, we parked the truck in the pasture under a canopy of vividly bright stars and enjoyed the show accompanied by a coyote serenade. The horses, goats, dogs, and cats would join us. It was our paradise, but it would not last.
At first, the towers with bright lights were far away in the distance. I was only mildly curious. But they multiplied and crept closer until the Milky Way was gone. “They murdered our stars,” my son mourned.