Where the sky was once blue

By Setareh
13 years old
Tehran

It has been many years since I have parted with my planet Earth and come here to a land where time has come to a standstill and peace and friendship have replaced war and misery. Hunger and misery are unheard of.

In this land, there are no cars and exhaust fumes. It is a land full of horses and load-carrying animals that do not produce diesel and gasoline fumes. Troughs are the gas stations of this strange land where human beings and animals are equal.

After years of separation, my friends and good teachers on Earth long to see me and have asked me to come even for just one day. I hesitate.

In my mind I recall their letter once again: "It has been many years since you parted. We continue to live in the age of the rhinoceros. We hang on to young tree branches hoping that one day they would lift us up."

As I recall those words, I become determined to go to Earth and soothe their fears. But when I reach Earth I am faced with what I feared most. Not long ago planet Earth was surrounded by blue skies. Now it has been turned into a black sphere.

My friends welcome me. They are wearing gas masks. I am terrified as it is very difficult to breath. They give me a mask, which lessens my horror. All the homes are covered with soot.

I tell my friends that I can't stay in this hell; not even for a moment! But I am determined not to leave alone. I decide to take them with me. They have all developed heart disease and doctors have told them they should think of something to regain their health.

I tell my friends that they can all come with me but only if they promise not to destroy that beautiful land like they destroyed planet Earth, where you could once see the moon in the night sky. They promise. And I take the people of my polluted Earth with me to that lush land.

Shouldn't we reduce pollution before our Earth truly turns into an unlivable land?


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Last Updated: 11-Mar-96
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