Re-Member More Than Human 

As I stumble to respond, she cuts me short

         “Ah, you just mean nature!”

But what I want to say is:

“Remember the joy of sap rising, reaching

 out fingertips in the blue blue sky

 

“Remember dancing the river’s mouth, hoping 

for a strange embrace

Fins flapping in yin and yang

 

“Remember the bottom of the billabong, waiting

 for an old song to emerge 

Myths arise through the land’s lies

 

“Remember standing still for millennia 

Marvelling at others’ speed and sudden spurts

Holding back blood and breath, bursting

magma and belching smoke

 

“Remember being drawn to light

Or burning your wings 

Understanding death and desire

as the same thing

 

“Remember burbling over stones

Smoothing them to roundness

In the artistry of flow, frozen 

crystals reflecting emotions 

 

“Remember song in celebration

At the end of tropical rains

Petrichor and passion inducing orgies

 

“Remember stars

In the darkest of skies, glowing 

 in phosphorescence

Each community abdomen twinkling 

 

“Remember soaring in the sky

Calling your lover’s name

Circling on wind currents, until 

a sudden plunge calls you to supper

 

“Remember feeling blindly and surely

 the fecund transmissions of dirt

Only to sense your dress rehearsals bloom and die

In the carrying rhythm of air

 

 “Remember your whole being 

Bending and swaying under a finches’ peep

Your head so full of the next generation

Your life so short and sweet

 

“Remember the return to comforting depths

Sensing the close company of salt 

Even as your birth and death

Leaps in the freshwater’s scent

 

“Remember, sprung to life in thunderclap,

 pelting down to thirsty earth and breaking boughs

Alive, alive and soaking down

 

“Remember, slowly lessening

Earth, water, sun, and wind

Turning heroes into housekeepers

A tiny obstacle along the road

every mountainhold a grain

 

“Remember when you lay 

In the midst of all these songs

And knew how much and how little

 

Is the matter of a single soul”

 

 

The word “nature” imposes a white grid

- complexity reduced to a single word - 

Across the flow of country.

 

a country full of other beings.

 

Every place, always, more than human.


Tamsin Kerr 2019