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From: Vol.07 N.01 – Plant Poetics

Three songs to rain, translated by a kōwhai tree

by Susan Wardell



Our thousand sides, wind-twilling, twist will un-tambourine

the sun-press, sky-willing, with whissssh

to shushle your air-roaring, cloud crickle, pick up the fierce

passing, rasp-dancing our free slim hustle

wind-rub on web tendrils and the world rolls, word-hushhhh, we roar

the fixed measure of storm shoulder, un-set the sung-form of low waters

and the wet soles of our many tongues and curl of under-youngs

will whet their whistles, as air thick ushle gives over, whole willing





De-rip, and pling, we flow-over, and upside send, down

one shot after another, the fine art, of plim and maid in water-ring

gloss-shine, the sleek rind of the welcome-ing, our wax

too full to sip, sheds water-skin to let fall up and ripple

the circle-arts of earth pools, one after another, sing, sing to over

flowing, flaw-less run, the excess free for silver-ing





Under, erred our earth-eyes blind and finger-deep death truly

mother limb lies down to un-beget, her edges umber to the eek, as were

our own un-learning to touch, her dark

undoes all the mouths own ends be-neath, oh wet

the grown down tender, rills to break our own knot, knot

un-making in soft tremble, in in-stilling rumble, rough rush o’er

the rich be-drawing, come come sluice

of glisten-dark, spore-hustle, and mush-hungry

coo the death death woodly, rebegin

Published: March 2020
Susan Wardell

is from Dunedin, New Zealand, where she lectures in Social Anthropology, while raising two small humans and a modest indoor jungle. Her poetry has been published in a variety of journals throughout Australasia. In 2019 she placed second in the NZPS International Poetry Competition, and first in the International ‘Micro-madness’ competition.

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.