HomeOpinion & AnalysisThe wailing forests

The wailing forests


By Peter Makwanya

Wails from a soul deflowered pierce the poisoned skies,

Mourning her innocence lost, looted and traded,

Her nudity impaired and exposed, who will clothe the forests,

Set ablaze for your son’s and daughter’s smiles, for pieces of silver,

Bloodstained betrayal from those that suckled from her breasts,

The treasures of medicines hidden underneath, smuggled and sold elsewhere,

Buy them as tablets dressed in bottles, packaged in plastics, inscribed made in Europe,

Once tried and tested, stood the test of time, with atoned resilience,

Caressed by flames of fire, choked by smoke in the absence of hunters’ sense,

Roasted and peeled alive, natural coat painfully carved off to nudity,

Shame grips me as I stand to bear the horrors of human insanity,

The cries, the pains, the scars, now tell-tales of a cursed humanity,

Once strong, clothed, majestic and imposing, but weakened and finished,

Tired of seeing my fruits, leaves, poles and roots disappear without saying goodbye,

Silent heartbreaking screams cut through the days and nights for the knights,

She’s calling for help from deep inside, while the innocent listens and the master hears,

Her siblings sucked into the soils, they suffocate, and die, leaving man to poison the skies,

The ancestors once narrated their adventure with her, but now stand accused of using the shameless and unforgiving axe,

Stories of the sins of the descendants of lords of Caucasus now blamed on the poor African,

Made to pay the price of carbon, the price of raping the environment,

What a beautiful specie I was, with birds making nests, before human tastes,

Bees making hives, elders enjoying the gourd under my cool shade,

Even the witches at night would gather and hold their evil gatherings,

Animals, creatures that creepeth and those dwelling underneath would enjoy my hospitality,

While birds sing all day long, butterflies bounced along enjoying my serenity,

All these have gone, without saying goodbye and now eaten by loneliness and shame,

Broken and bruised African forests, blamed for sins of stewardship,

With broken shoulders and bleeding terrains, waiting for the prescription from the plunderer,

To be replenished in the name of green technologies and solutions,

That will restore the stolen forests, in this wave of new capitalism,

But still, you ululate watching her siblings burn, in the spirit of green energy revolution,

As I stand motionless, lonely, loathed and forsaken,

No longer a favourite host, but inviting axes of all sizes, to cut me down,

Torch me in fireplaces, to warm their winter and cook their dinner,

Not even a spent force, even in death I have a purpose, I die and resurrect,

But the unkind humankind, have lost their heads and hearts,

The sins of smoke, greed, dust, toxins and poison now flowing like a river,

The master’s tongue mutters terror and glib, to pierce and confuse,

Descendants of doom and hopelessness, a people with no history and culture,

She fears for her sons she birthed from between her thighs,

Who take their women to pick my parts they fearlessly incite,

Cursed are ye, oh mankind, for celebrating your mother’s demise,

Cry mother nature, this changing and confused climate change,

Just like an unwanted host would not just go without teaching unkind lessons,

No more rains, forests, flowing rivers, but flash floods sweeping away your sins,

Droughts, hunger, diseases, wars, locusts like biblical Pharaoh’s frogs and darkness,

No cleaner air, green hills, food, butterflies and frogs to sing for summer,

But strong winds and rains with names of a woman, overturning and uprooting everything,

With every nation, great and small in panic mode, all gathering to gather their senses,

But cannot change the climate changed by ignorant agents without heads and hearts,

As forests have been undressed, stripped to nakedness and horror to the eye,

Monetised and traded, choked with burning smoke, drunk with gases of carbon sins,

Inviting suitors from afield, to devour innocent forests for the lust that never last,

What about the children, our heritage and future, to tell the story that lasts,

That the million trees disappeared, is the expensive furniture now imported from far afield,

Cry mother forests, hail mother nature, is nature for humans or humans for nature.

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