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Young Writers Mull the Power of Natural Forces

Young Writers Project is an independent nonprofit that engages students to write, helps them improve and connects them with audiences through the Newspaper Series (and youngwritersproject.org) and the Schools Project (ywpschools.net). YWP is supported by this newspaper and foundations, businesses and individuals who recognize the power and value of writing. If you would like to donate to YWP, go to youngwritersproject.org/support.

This week’s prompt: Elements: What is the strongest and/or most beautiful force of nature?

The sun casts a uniquely dappled pattern

through the leaves of the tall trees around me,

not quite grown as they will be in summer,

but with the beauty that is special to spring

just after the snow melts away.

The light reflects in a rainbow off the small gurgling stream

that urges on between boulders,

around fallen tree branches,

and onward toward unknown lands.

I stare for a moment,

before slipping my still tied sneakers

off my heels

and deserting them on the mossy bank.

I leap towards the water,

from stone to stone,

cautious,

until I feel the cool water on the soles of my bare feet

like a small voice

telling me to just take a moment here,

to pause in my journey.

I sit,

just enjoying

the understated beauty of this place,

the feeling that I am the only person to take time

to truly appreciate it.

I don’t know how long I sit there,

letting the cool water run over my bare feet,

until I stand

and continue

with my little stream as a guide

to take me

onward

to unknown lands.

The boat flies across the ocean,

salty air whipping

my face

and anything not covered

by my bright yellow raincoat.

The midnight is lit with stars and beauty

but the waves crash

with resounding force and power.

Some may quake

in front of this wonder,

but I stand strong,

water splashing in my face.

A twinge of fear creeps into the back of my head,

but I carry on,

head held high.

The ocean hardly realizes

that I struggle

along its surface.

There are so many others

whose lives ended fighting

this beast.

But I will not fall

into its murky clutch.

I do not know

what the future will bring.

I am at the mercy of the sea.

Unrestrained natural activity is brutal and ugly. Without laws and regulations, written and unwritten, Earth would be one giant sphere of utter chaos. This is because the strongest force in nature is not kindness or love, but the self-serving, self-gratifying, and self-preservation aspect of individualism. Most everything that can be observed, from plants, animals, and humans, shows a selfish concern that is stronger than any other force by nature.

Plant life makes some of the most beautiful and wondrous sights and views in nature here in New England. Vibrant flower petals can be observed in the spring, deep green leaves of trees in the summer, and eventually wonderful collages of orange and red in autumn. Simply beautiful.

However, those beautiful plants come to be through a nature that we would consider ruthless if the plants had brains to discern their actions. In crowded environments of plants, only the most stable trees make it. In their communities, the strongest plants will grow in a manner that will give them the most sunshine and water in order to grow. If this means stomping on their neighbor’s chances, so be it. If they are in the way of the smaller plant that is trying to get some sunshine and water, tough luck. The plants live their vegetable lifestyle as a life of self-concern and self-preservation …

To read the complete essay, go to www.youngwritersproject.org/node/89409.

Some of the strongest forces in nature are lava, heat, water, wind, earth, and cold. In my opinion, the strongest force in nature is wind. Wind will cool lava, another powerful force, decimate areas with tornadoes, control weather, and when mixed with precipitation, it is deadly. Hurricanes will blow houses down, rip buildings apart, and flood areas with the water they push with their force. Sure, scientifically proven, running water is the strongest force, but running water isn’t going to do anything once wind pushes against it in all directions. It’s getting trapped and isn’t going anywhere. Wind and water combined is one of the deadliest combinations of all time. Wind with rocks can create echoes. The echoes create beautiful music. Wind is the most important force in nature.