On Earth Day, my little people and I stretched out on a rug under the apple tree; its blossom narrowly escaping the last frost. A pompous red robin tweeted from the branch above, his little chest puffed out with all the effort. The tulips lazily yawned at the sun way up high up in a cloudless sky, one that was crayon blue, as though a child has drawn it on. With our pencils and pads, we scribbled down a letter. It began. . .
DEAR EARTH. . .
Isabel Otter and Clara Anganuzzi have created an ode to Earth with their book ‘Dear Earth’. A love story if you will, where a little girl writes a letter to Earth, celebrating its incredible biomes and the amazing creatures within them. She plunges beneath the waves to blow bubbles with the whales and stands atop white capped mountains, arms spread wide like the geese soaring above.
‘Dear Earth’ is spectacularly simple – in the very best way – with gorgeous descriptions that immerse you in an animal stampede or a dusty desert. And they’re illustrations to pore over – Clara’s detailed reef and rainforest spreads had us jabbing at the page to spot the animals we knew. But above all else, this book made us pause and question things like whether Earth really does feel the cold? It made us. . . talk.
The six-year-old, fondly known as THE BOSS said. . . “If I write a letter to Earth will she even write back? Can you hear the Earth talking Mum?”
So, we sat. And we listened. The Earth whispered as the wind tickled the leaves in the trees and sighed as she swept through the grass.
But then THE BOSS said. . . “When it rains, is that the Earth’s tears because we’ve hurt her.”
And as we reached the final pages of the book THE BOSS’ eyes misted. “Grandpa says that humans have hurt you. . . but we can heal you too.” It’s a big message for one so young.
So. . . we wrote a letter.
THE BOSS’ letter reads: “Dear Earth, I’ll love to explore your incredible things, the depths of the deep black ocean. PS I love you Earth.”
(Oh, to be a poet at six!)
The four-year-old, who admittedly has gone feral in lockdown, astonished us all as he sat dreamily under the apple tree and wrote: “Dear Earth. . . I want to swim with the whale.”
The kids thought long and hard about how to send their letter to Earth. A paper plane wouldn’t do. Or a letter in a bottle. And then we read the last line from Grandpa in the book. . .
“Perhaps if enough of us share the message, we can still save our dear Earth.”
So we’re sharing our letter with you.