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Ordinary Christians, extraordinary times

Orangutan: ‘Person of the Forest’

Desolation lies around me, growth has died, seed suicide
Soil dries, cries for rain but the sun denies this in its pride
Yet here I sit, Orangutan, clinging to this solitary tree
Bark cracked, leaves have all but left, so now it’s just me

Memories remind me of the time before all things died
When tree’s were legion, when rain told me the world cried
Back then I wasn’t lonely, wife and child, many friends
Climate changed but humans wouldn’t make amends

First my forest was taken slowly by humans with machines
Profit, greed, no thought in the rush to grow more proteins
Second, came heavy rains that drowned and took the soil
Then, from my solitary tree, I saw heat make water boil

The sky is empty, the birds have all flown, dying on the wing
The only sound is when the dry winds make my tree sing
My stomach is as empty as this harsh and desiccated land
Soon I will fall to the brittle, dry, earth when I let go my hand

There to lie, my hair and flesh dried and blown with the wind
But before I pass, I will fully remember all those of my kind
Living free in the swaying green, feeding, loving, raising young
Orangutan’s; I am the last of our kind and my memory is long

Trevor Amos

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