The forest, hit by modern use,
Stands graced with damage
Tilt everywhere, with graphic needle crowns
And trinket saps fixed round their year;
Vines spider web, flowering, over smashed
Intricacies; long rides appear
Dense growths that were always underbrush
Expand in the light, beside bulldozers’
Imprinted machine-gun belts of spoor.
Now the sun’s in, through breaks and jags,
Culled slopes are jammed with replacement; green
And whip stick saplings, every one out
To shade the rest to death.
Feeds leaf-mould its taut rain-cold solution;
Bared creeks wash gold; kingfishers hover.
There is still great height: all through the hills
Spared hierarchs toughen to the wind
Around the punk hearts that got them spared
And scatter seed down the logging roads.
Grease-fungi, scrolls, clenched pipes of bark:
The forest will now be kept like this
For a long time. There are rooms in it
And, paradox for mystery, birds
Too tiny, now that we see them, for
Their amplitude and carrying flash of song.
On a stump, a sea eagle eats by lengths
Their enemy, a coil-whipping dry land fish
And voids white size to make room for it.