Mimi Casteel on Stewardship
For the public announcement of the Willamette Valley Oak Accord, March, 2017
I spend a lot of time thinking about words and meaning. We underestimate the way our words, the rhetoric of our time, designs the present and the future, though we need only open a history book to have that lesson proved definitively.
Two words I have spent a lot of time around lately are steward and owner. The word steward has roots in the roots stig, for hold, household or pen, and the old English weard, which in its long history is mostly adverbially used to mean ‘turned toward, bend toward’ but later ‘to keep guard, watch, protect and preserve’
And then owner, whose roots ‘own’, from agen, literally mean ‘possessed by’. I’ll just let everyone sit with those.