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The Book of Forests - 1

by gard 

Posted: 07 March 2013
Word Count: 1196
Summary: Currently working on uploaded to keep it on my radar. Yes I know it needs spell check and grammar major...

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Here, the trees talk to each other, not in the way of words, yet
through the rushes and sighs of fluids gurgling up their phloem, the
rustles and turns of their leaves, the creakings of the bough, the
sway of the main stem, and many other subtle ways as they sent
syncopated messages through the woodland to each other. These things
never visible to man except the special few, just that gave humans the
eary feeling of being watched in the dark shades of the deep forest.
The unfriendly noises and smells telling the humans to get out the
forest, such as root cracking to release odours unpleasant to humans
like dead animal flesh for instance. So in a way the trees made their
feelings known. But this made the humans suspicious of the trees. And
never did the humans hear the protestations as the trees were chopped
and hawed and their dead and live frames hewn into a kind of slavery.
It was too late when the forest understood that perhaps the humans did not care for the flowers with the best scents
and trees with the brightest blooms.

These days there are few sounds in the this forest except for the
trees who mainly sighed with longing especially from the the old
trees. The trees that remember, such as the old oaks, think on the days
when their were birds and brightly coloured insects flitting about and
raising their young in their boughs. When ants would march up and
down the crevices and textured surfaces of the trees bringing and
taking their food or travelling to some other tree. Once the forest
was filled with sounds all sorts actually. Then forest was
destroyed, the trees shrieked and shook their leaves in rage and
fright, they were reduced from forest to stump by the blight of man
and the air became so still that there was no recovery even as the
forest grew again to something not quite its original self. Word got
around you see. If there was no food or shelter no creature or plant
wanted to live among the mangled wood. So now even though the forest
returned nothing lived there, it was a struggle to even get
pollinated, though some of the hardy beetles and other insects stuck
it out and they worked day and night with the trees and few remaining
flowers to keep things going. The self pollinators were luckier. The
humans were long gone. It seems they had died out in this area or
simply moved on.

This particular morning the mist hung low, the air heavy and wet and
the smell of earth and moss are strong. Already the trees were busy
with their morning business of energy gathering, some were expanding
and shrinking their phloem the clacking sounds across
the phloem cell walls were protestations that the mist was slowing them
down but not giving them enough moisture to reach the tips of the
trees so water was having to be sucked up from the deepest roots. Yet
the mosses and lichens, who were rather vain but pretty and dainty,
were enjoying the dampness and greedly absorbing the moisture in the
air to plump themselves up. Around the base of the trees the fungi was
beginning to pop up and tiny stalwart horsetails were also enjoying
the damp cool air.

What is it about this day that is so special it is nothing it appears
except in the the green opening where the sun streams into a warm
glade a young tree has been attracting some attention from the elders
and today it had just begun to be very surprising. A ring of trees
that grew around the glen were sending out their centric
reverberations to the rest of the woodland such that if viewed from
the air, the trees would be observed very slowly swaying back and
forth into the center of the forest with their leaves all turned in
the same direction and the cicades rhythmic buzz was loud and fast at
the activities of the trees. The tiny sapling had grown to just 2 feet
tall and yet it already was very different to its parent tree.
Instead of a plain healthy bud for its growing tip, a fuzz of leaves
grew at the top, instead of 2 branches with leaves on the end, the
ends had splintered and formed 12 twig like extensions each becoming finer
and finer points and each held into the ground by roots. Instead of
one stem the lower part of the stem had split into 2 each connected to
the earth by roots. The older trees leaned backwards in surprise at
this oddity why, they sensed, the young sapling looked like a four legged

Of course they had been watching this event for sometime. Perhaps it
was just a weird freak of nature sometimes saplings do look like
creatures. But on this day something else had happened. With all the
leaning back and forth to watch the young saplings eccentric growth
they had cast a shadow over the sapling that day causing the sun to be
shut off from its fuzzy crown. The trees had not noticed this though
usually they would but once a tree gets so large it cannot always feel
what is at its feet. The shadow across the sapling had persisted for
several days. But today the sapling it seems had enough. Right there
that morning, it had done something that made the forest collectively
gasp, the rush of phloem had even popped leaves of some of the older
tree tips. Becuase the tiny sapling began to quiver, its feathery
crown trembled its tiny bough vibrated, its phloem cells squeaked and
moaned and cried, and this persisted for several hours. The trees
taken aback and realising they had shut off the sun to the tiny
sapling leant backwards to open up the space. It was too late. The
tiny sapling dropped as if exhausted. The trees felt a kind of sadness
because although death is commenplace amongst the plants, there really
was not much of excitement in the forest these days and each morning
the trees had waited to learn of the news of the strange sapling.
Slowly they begun to relax back into the wind and light as they grew
used to the idea of loosing their daily focus and getting on with the
business of gathering light when with a sound like bough cracking the
sapling began to shake again and suddenly with a huge effort and a
shrieking sound tore its split bough and roots out of the earth and
using the roots as if feet had moved itself like a human does further
along the glade where it was both wetter from the morning dew and
sunnier too. There it sunk its roots back into the soft soil and moss
which wrapped it self around the broken roots buffering them with its
moist plumpness and the astonishing sapling making a kind of sighing
noise from its feathery crown settled quietly apparently quite happy
and none the worse for breaking off its roots from those deep in the

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