The Forests Speak

For the Tasmanian Forests

In my slow growing long lasting huon
There are the stories of your grandfather’s hands
And gaze taking me all in

I carry you in my arms to the safety of Earth mother to
Shield you from storms and yet you would
I belong to your children and grandchildren

Would you unfriend my many shades of green
Lime and moss on rolling hills
See them parched yellow crying
Stripped pine

Would you delist me from your protection
Hold me at a distance
Forget that I am your breath
Forget my distinct scent
In timber in new life as your love seat

Would you let me be overharvested
So people of today are the last ones
To say they saw the Ancients
Who had to make way for too many tree farms

Together we braved the tempest
Of droughts and fires
And as we survive should not our
Bond be stronger?

Would you lie down in
My green tears
To cleanse your heart?

Could you learn to bless me
Let me be the forest at your back
The open arms that
Lovers long for?

(c) June Perkins

4 thoughts on “The Forests Speak

  1. Such a beautiful testament to the sheltering forests that are now being threatened, June.

    “Together we braved the tempest”… This reminds me of the si-si-gwa-d,” the sound the trees make, that Ignatia Broker describes (Night Flying Woman: An Ojibway Narrative, pp. 32-33).
    “The forests have never failed the Ojibway. The trees are the glory of the Gitchi Manito. The trees, for as long as they shall stand, will give shelter and life to the Anishinabe and the Animal Brothers They are a gift. As long as the Ojibway are beneath, the tress will murmur with contentment. When the
    Ojibway and the Animal Bothers are gone, the forest will weep and this will be reflected in the sound of the si-si-gwa-d.” And when the forests are gone, the Ojibwe (Ojibway, Anishinabe) people, like the peoples of Tasmainia, will weep.

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