There is still a lot of beauty and I will do what I can to keep it from slipping away.

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Andrew Payton
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Dear Alba:

It pains me to think of the beauty that will be gone before you ever see it, and even more to think that much of it is already gone. This week they reported that all the white oaks in our neighborhood are dying. There were parakeets in these mountains, and red wolfs, passenger pigeons, and giant chestnuts dominating the landscape. I once swam in a barrier reef with sea turtles and corals and massive fish, and that place may be gone before you are grown.

For you, I promise to keep taking you outside and to teach you to appreciate and protect what lives. There is still a lot of beauty and I will do what I can to keep it from slipping away.

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