From The Everglades: River of Grass by Marjory Stoneman Douglas (1947).
"There are no other Everglades in the world. They are, they have always been, one of the unique regions of the earth, remote, never wholly known. Nothing anywhere else is like them: their vast glittering openness, wider than the enormous visible round of the horizon, the racing free saltness and sweetness of their massive winds, under the dazzling blue heights of space. They are unique also in the simplicity, the diversity, the related harmony of the forms of life they enclose. The miracle of the light pours over the green and brown expanse of saw grass and of water, shining and slow-moving below, the grass and water that is the meaning and central fact of the Everglades of Florida. It is a river of grass...Where do you begin? Because, when you think of it, history, the recorded time of the earth and of man, is in itself something like a river. To try to present it whole is to find oneself lost in the sense of continuing change. The source can be only the beginning in time and space, and the end is the future and the unknown... So it is with the Everglades, which have that quality of long existence in their own nature. They were changeless. They are changed."
Florida author and conservationist Marjory Stoneman Douglas was born in 1890. Her best-selling book, The Everglades: River of Grass was published in 1947, the same year the 1.4 million acre Everglades National Park, opened. A noted author, editor and environmentalist, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1993, which she donated to her alumnus, Wellesley College. At the age of 104, Douglas published a novel, Freedom River.
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