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From: Vol.01 N.01 – Ecopoetic Ruminations

Field Trip with Acid Rain

by Mary Cresswell

That afternoon we tramped to the springs

brushing branches and dead leaves aside,

trading terminologies, looking

for tiny mosses sung up by the frogs

who hide and call from lucid pools,

remembering, hoping for new growth

to show them spring might come. We were clear

of the city, nearly free to breathe.


The lake was cold, the woods were bare.

We looked into useless, bottomless pools

where ‘crystal clear’ means ‘don’t drink here’.

Only our voices echoed; no birds sang.

The sun flickered low in the pines

like a dying wasp snagged in resin.

Published: January 2014
Mary Cresswell

is from Los Angeles and lives on New Zealand’s Kapiti coast. She is a former natural history editor and as a poet has published in Australia, NZ, the US, the UK and Canada. Her newest book, Fish Stories, will come out in 2015.

An Australian and international
journal of ecopoetry and ecopoetics.

Plumwood Mountain Journal is created on the unceded lands of the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation. We pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and to elders past, present and future. We also acknowledge all traditional custodians of the lands this journal reaches.