Rest now, e Papatūānuku
Breathe easy and settle
Right here where you are
We’ll not move upon you
We’ll stop, we’ll cease
We’ll slow down and stay home
Draw each other close and be kind
Kinder than we’ve ever been.
I wish we could say we were doing it for you
as much as ourselves
But hei aha
We’re doing it anyway
It’s right. It’s time.
Time to return
Time to remember
Time to listen and forgive
Time to withhold judgment
Time to cry
Time to think
Remove our shoes
Press hands to soil
Sift grains between fingers
Time to plant
Time to wait
Time to notice
To whom we belong
For now it’s just you
And the wind
And the forests and the oceans and the sky full of rain
Finally, it’s raining!
Ka turuturu te wai kamo o Rangi ki runga i a koe
This sacrifice of solitude we have carved out for you
He iti noaiho – a small offering
People always said it wasn’t possible
To ground flights and stay home and stop our habits of consumption
But it was
It always was.
We were just afraid of how much it was going to hurt
– and it IS hurting and it will hurt and continue to hurt
But not as much as you have been hurt.
So be still now
Wrap your hills around our absence
Loosen the concrete belt cinched tight at your waist
And we will do the same.
-Mother Earth by Nadine Anne Hura
Our Time to Reflect
Empty streets, empty shops, empty restaurants, empty buses. Right now, everyone is staying at home watching their isolated cities from their windows. Whilst we stay indoors, we see our world regenerating itself.
The air is becoming fresher and the waters clearer all because there’s a stop to overindulgence.
In our capitalist world, overproduction and overconsumption are fueled by the relentless competitiveness within industries. Fashion is one of them, standing as one of the major pollutants in the world. You now demand roughly four times the number of clothes you would have in 1980- but they are all badly made.
This pollutes our air, soil, water as well as degrading the wearers and the makers. But, what for? So we can buy more garments wear them just a few times before throwing them away? Isn’t it sad how superficial and addictive shopping has become?
Stop and Think
Not much thinking was going on in China this month when ‘revenge shopping’ took place- on the very first day shops reopened after quarantine, a rash of spending sprees as a reaction to lockdown and luxury brands did well- Hermes made $2.7 million in sales in 24 hours.
There’s always a thrill in shopping, of buying something that makes us feel attractive and pretty. But how can we buy something that makes us feel good if we know deep down how the clothes are made?
Stop and Consider
The people who make your clothes, mostly women and children, are forced to work around 96 hours per week. They are paid a minimum wage, not a living wage so, not enough to live with dignity. And worst of all is the physical and mental abuse these people face on a daily basis, with one in three women experiencing sexual abuse in the workplace.
Can we keep consuming like this knowing how much suffering and destruction we generate every day just for our superficial wants?
Remember the planet is not ours, it’s shared not only with the 7 billion other humans- but with our children & their children’s children. We are merely tenants who should be living within the balance of nature.
Time to stand up for our home. Stand up for our sisters. Stand up for our future and the future of our children.
So, stop and think. Think before you buy a garment and ask yourself, ‘Is it worth it? Will I wear it more than 50 times? Do I love It? Is it ethically made?’
Is it really worth it?
Film, N., Resilience, R., Pietkiewicz, S., McClelland, L., Porte, M., Ganly, L., Otvos, J. and Policy, T., 2020. For Papatūānuku – Mother Earth By Nadine Anne Hura Via Jacinda Ardern. [online] New Story Hub. Available at: <http://newstoryhub.com/2020/04/for-papatuanuku-mother-earth-by-nadine-anne-hura-via-jacinda-ardern/> [Accessed 8 May 2020].
Singh, S., 2020. The Curious Phenomenon Of Revenge Shopping In China After Lockdown. [online] The Economic Times. Available at: <https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/services/retail/the-curious-phenomenon-of-revenge-shopping-in-china-after-lockdown/articleshow/75509099.cms?from=mdr> [Accessed 8 May 2020].
SustainYourStyle. 2020. Sustainyourstyle. [online] Available at: <https://www.sustainyourstyle.org/> [Accessed 8 May 2020].