Environment



LEAVE WHAT’S LEFT ALONE

 
Our rainforests are diminishing whilst great treasures they conceal

Many are microscopic, that medical science use to heel

Today the search continues, who knows what lies within

Maybe a helpful cancer cure or a cream to rub on your skin
 

Precious trees of the rainforest were ripped apart and torn

From a cyclone named Yasi, that year is now well gone

The cyclone let the sunlight in down to the forest floor

Allowing understory growth to flourish and gradually restore
 

I took a walk within this land, canopy broken overhead

Followed along a worn track though not sure where it led

But here I came across an animal with links to the dinosaur

A prehistoric relative, that one day could be no more
 

Yes there amid the undergrowth a dark body, large and hairy

This flightless bird that has the name of the Southern Cassowary

Two strong legs each three big toes, of these you must be wary

A weapon claw for self defence, if it attacked, it would be scary
 

It moved along slow and silent and rather close-by to me

Not bothered by my being there little danger could it see

When it crossed the path that I walked – only then did I realise

No wonder this bird cannot fly, because of it’s weight and immense size


I was barely breathing standing still as I watched it slowly disappear

Soon engulfed by trees and leaves its whereabouts soon unclear

Then I pondered its food intake, how much to satisfy

It would need a lot of fallen fruit and fungi to get it by
 

The environment where it resides is a restricted habitat

Pressure from man and nature too could one day end all that

So let us use some common sense and leave what’s left alone

We don’t need to destroy any more, let’s leave the bird its home

 

© Daryl Barnes 2016

 


 
TRADITIONAL OWNER KENNY

We’ve been invited specifically to a land not seen by many
‘Come and see it for yourself’, said traditional owner Kenny
So we met him at his family home, an hour and a half from site
We travelled along on a bumpy track, two vehicles stayed in sight

Seventy k’s on the speedo, as the causeway came in view
Which crossed Broken River, flowing water we drove through
But next time we ask, how long now Kenny, his answer we simply doubled
However, he was all forgiven, we arrived safe and untroubled

On a sandy knob right on the river bank, our camp organised
Then a drive to Urannah homestead, undersized we were surprised
Around the fire we chewed the fat and learned some Urannah history
With politics and interest groups, the end result is still a mystery

As darkness falls the moon arrives, pour hot water over a new tea bag
The two girls in tents neatly tucked away, us four blokes each in a swag

A Pied Currawong led the kookaburra, to welcome in the day
As the mountain stream continued its journey, on this the 23rd day of May

 
© Daryl Barnes 2016

 

PLEASE DON’T WAKE ME

 

Mines of coal and oil and gas – now each have shut the door

Those shipping spills and leaks -- they don’t occur here any more

So our coral reefs – can remain crystal clean

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

Less extremes of weather – with fewer cyclonic blows

Our swollen creeks -- have no chemical flows

The Great Barrier Reef – now is crystal clean

But please don’t wake me, from my dream

 

The crown of thorns – are controlled at last

That coral bleaching – is a thing of the past

We enjoy a climate – that is crystal clean

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

Fish are free -- to swim and breed

The human race -- has lost its greed

Our ocean world -- is now crystal clean

But please don’t wake me, from my dream

 

The timber cutters -- no longer clear

Threatened species – have no need to fear

All remaining forests – create a postcard scene

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

We can now feed the world -- with much less stress

Obesity is fading -- as we’re eating much less

Healthy active people – no longer yearn for cream

But please don’t wake me, from my dream

 

All power supplied – by wind water and sun

No more burning coal -- its race has run

The resources boom – is now a ‘has-been’

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

Reliable rains -- bring fresh water to drink

Environmental flows – supplies are filled to the brink

Ample water for food -- that’s organically clean

But please don’t wake me, from my dream

 

New farming methods -- for sustainability

No clearing of land -- no more salinity

The mistakes of old -- are no longer seen

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

Now we all take money -- from each working day

To support our life-style -- to improve our stay

But the way we live -- what does it really mean?

And that ‘perfect’ world, is that too in a dream?

 

A population decline – the future’s been revised

Now controlled by the caring -- and by the civilised

No more messy wars -- no poverty to clean

But please don’t wake me, from this dream

 

There’s no more fighting -- world peace was reached

The word refugee -- its use has ceased

Everyone’s happy at home – where it’s now serene

But please don’t wake me, from my dream

 

Now I’m free falling – and so I let out a scream

Then I wake up in bed – realising yes, this was all in a dream

 

 
© Daryl Barnes 2016

 

 

LISTEN FOR THE CRIES

 

From the time we were settled – before any of us were born

The destruction began – fragile habitats were torn

They saw value in the trees – so systematically were removed

Milled and shipped back home – for this country to be improved

 

We needed somewhere to live - saw our towns thrive and expand

We found minerals in the ground – saw the price raise the demand

Food needed to be grown – so we needed to clear land

Turn this island into a home – yes the plan was so grand

 

It took years to realise – before we listened to the cries

The system was failing – the land and wildlife were ailing

Time to look closer and evaluate – for some already too late

Techniques of the past – they needed to change fast

 

Are we here for the ride – in this vast countryside

Or are we here to provide – and show a little pride

So let’s do what we can – make a sustainable plan

And show that we tried - before another one has died

 

We need more than words – to improve the welfare of birds

We need a plan of action – with an outcome of satisfaction

It’s the decision makers with no faces – that occupy the high places

Try to convince these beaurocrats – we need to replenish habitats

 

But we’ll do what we can do – work together as a crew

Target a small project – and try to get the public to connect

Try and make a difference – and avoid any interference

If your conscience is clear – then you so deserve a cheer

 

© Daryl Barnes 2016

 



THE CALEY VALLEY

 

The Caley Valley Wetlands – attracts birds from afar

A migratory refuge – a roost on a tidal sand bar

A large array of native animals – call this place home

Some come from overseas – others locally roam

 

Crustaceans and small fish – can develop in here too

Creating a massive food chain – for larger predators to pursue

Another piece of the jigsaw – is the insects life-cycle

Everything plays a role – every species is vital

 

When insects gather round – the mass of flowering water lily

It can draw much attention – predators can feed willy-nilly

The elegant Black Swans – guard their signets with pride

The ever watchful Jabiru – stalk the mudflats long dried

 

And Jacana use the lily pads – like a massive green pontoon

Whist Painted Snipe are reclusive – preferring cover by the lagoon

 

Then there becomes an eerie calm – when darkness does descend

Frogs find their croaking voice – and continue on no end

Then the creatures of the night – they now come into play

With owls that eagerly watch – a crocodile that starts a melee

 

By a submerged log in the fading light – with its deadly eye-sight

A Barramundi lays in wait – surveying a school of bait

A Purple Swamphen shriek – can be heard from a nearby creek

But a silent quoll could fall prey – if they get lost or stray

 

It is complex and diverse – it is the Caley Valley Wetlands

Filtering water as it flows – which the Coral Sea demands

It harbours birds and aquatic life – replenishing annually

It supports our barrier reef – one many visitors come here to see

 

© Daryl Barnes 2016

 



DUDGEON POINT

 

Now this parcel of land – whilst it looks nothing grand

With cattle grazing pasture – a clay pan and wetland

There were several dwellings– now they no longer stand

That overlooked the foreshore – and a beach of white sand

 

Now this parcel of land – that has been in the news

It is not far from town – with scenic ocean views

Contains more than one habitat – plus a rocky headland

Now there’s a rumour in the wind – a development is planned

 

Now this parcel of land – which some company will lease

To carry out its business – so its profits can increase

The government all eager – for a generous hand out

So decisions get made – the dollar in mind there’s no doubt

 

Now this parcel of land – half will be covered in black

Lights concrete and steel structures – surrounding each stack

There’ll be bitumen roads – and a new railway track

To bring in the coal – from the mines way out back

 

Now this parcel of land – will it ever be the same?

With coal dust and dredging – minimal impact is the claim

For the city of Mackay – no contamination is the aim

But once man interferes – who knows what could inflame

 

Now this parcel of land – for migrating birds there’s a roost

A long journey from Siberia – energy reserves need a boost

To keep nature in balance – is like a jigsaw puzzle

Take one piece away – and you are asking for trouble

 

 © Daryl Barnes 2016

 


RAINFOREST RAIN

 

You can smell it in the air – it will come as no surprise

Grey clouds turn black – get heavier as they rise

Moisture droplets will fall – helping plants revitalise

You will see them now grow – right before your very eyes

 

Once the wet has arrived – you need to be alert

If you’re walking a track – following along on the dirt

You will not be cold – you can be sure of that

But so you don’t get wet – wear a coat and hat

 

Yes now rain it can come – and catch you unaware

Water dripping from leaves – they are everywhere

Now leeches will too - be wanting for you

You have body heat – and your blood it’s a treat

 

Unique plants and animals – live and thrive up in here

It’s exactly what they need – or they’d all disappear

The animals will breed – and will find food they need

Whilst plants set fruit and grow – because it is what they know

 

Now not seen for some time – a frog feared extinct

No-one’s sure of the cause – but suspect disease linked

                              A pseudo vanilla orchid – recent discovery distinct

Along the escarpment – easily missed if you’d have blinked

 

But recent wet seasons – have been drier than most

With similar conditions – even along the coast

If this trend does continue – how does this environment survive

Everything relies on big rain – to keep it healthy and alive

 

 

 © Daryl Barnes 2016



FROM VALLEY TO MOUNTAIN TOP
 

If you take a drive from the valley floor

Up the range to the very top

You’ll hear a morning chorus

That will make you want to stop

Dominating the air waves

With their familiar song

That echoes through the tree tops

It’s home to the Pied Currawong

 

This rainforest that is dense and tall

Can be divided into thirds

The canopy at the top

Another for the ground dwelling birds

And there are birds living in between

Of which some are quite unique

And when you do not hear them

They’ll be a challenge for you to seek

 

You’ve driven the eighty k’s or so

To a land often in the cloud

You search for local species

Some with calls quite loud

Like that of the Eastern Whipbird

And the Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo

When you hear the Eungella Honeyeater call

There’s no guarantee you’ll get a view

 

A wheel that’s forced to turn

Revolving under pressure

Is the way I describe the call

Of this endemic Eungella treasure

The Clarke Range defines its distribution

Relatively small in size

Restricted to this habitat

Outside the bird rarely flies

 

So take a drive I encourage you

Come see what you can find

If birds are not your preference

There’s wildlife of another kind

Or if you’d rather plants and fungi

Many varieties are here to see

So leave your routine for awhile

The choice is yours and  free

 
 © Daryl Barnes 2016


 
 

LEAVE WHAT’S LEFT ALONE
 

Our rainforest land is diminishing – whilst great treasures they conceal

Many are microscopic – that medical science has used to heel

Today the search continues – who knows what could lie within

Maybe a helpful cancer cure – or a cream to apply to your skin

 

Precious trees of the rainforest – got ripped apart and torn

From a cyclone they named Yasi – that year is well gone

The cyclone let the sunlight in – right to the forest floor

Allowing understory growth – to thrive and grow some more

 

So I took myself into a world – with canopy broken overhead

Followed along a well worn track – though not sure to where it led

Where I came across an animal – with links to the dinosaur

A prehistoric relative – that one day could be no more

 

Yes there amid the undergrowth – a large body, dark and hairy

A flightless bird that has the name – of the Southern Cassowary

Two strong legs each three big toes – of these you must be wary

A weapon claw for self defence – if it attacked, it would be scary

 

It moved along slow and silent – and rather close-by me

Not bothered by my being there – little danger could it see

When it casually crossed the path I walked – only then did I realise

No wonder it can’t fly at all – this bird of weight and size

 

I was barely breathing standing still – and watched it slowly disappear

Soon engulfed by trees and leaves – its whereabouts unclear

Then I wondered of its food intake – how much to satisfy

It would need a lot of fallen fruit – and fungi to get by

 

The environment where it resides – is a restricted habitat

Pressure from man and nature too – could one day end all that

So let us use some common sense – and leave what’s left alone

We don’t need to take its land – let’s leave the bird its home

 

© Daryl Barnes 2016

 


 
KEEPING OUT THOSE WEEDS
 
A mass of bright and yellow flowers – amid green and glossy leaves
It makes for quite a picture – can grow quickly to your knees
Will spread by sending runners - it also spreads by seeds
You might say the perfect plant – as it smothers other weeds
 
So, how fool hardy were we then – how short sighted had we been
Could we not see what lay ahead – before introducing this plant I mean
Without a warning without a sign – was there nothing to beware
But now this plant has taken over – yes now it’s everywhere
 
Its name is Singapore Daisy – it’s one you won’t forget
Our northern climate suites it well – and now has its roots well set
Steadily it creeps along – through any fence or drain
And now it has become a curse – a great big bloody pain
 
So I went to seek some help – from people who really care
Who provide the gear and good advice – and what protection you should wear
They come under the working banner – of Pioneer Catchment Landcare
They've projects all around us – you could see them anywhere
 
Treat with bio-degradable roundup – they said I would require
To eradicate this hardy plant – several treatments you'll need apply
Along the creek behind our house - is where it freely grows
I'm targeting to destroy the lot – however many goes
 
I’ll make a note here in my diary – to report back to you one day
To tell you how I’m going – and whether I need more spray
Finding a good replacement – might prove rather tough
Getting the area under shade – might just prove to be enough
 
© Daryl Barnes 2016


 
GOING TO WASTE

 
On a visit to the local dump – just the other day

An odour was there to greet me – much to my dismay

Drawing in a big deep breath – whilst still in my ute I braced

Hot weather helps create the smell – of food decaying waste

The yard next door to where we live – year round is lush and green

It has water applied to it regularly – then out comes the mowing machine

I cringe when excess starts to flow – down the gutter at great haste

Our storage dams they slowly drain – whilst water is going to waste




Across town there’s the well to do – ample money for living high


Implement no power savings – although could and still get by


A triple-level mansion house – with abundant lighting graced

All lit up like a theme park ride – whilst electricity is going to waste
 
Each occupant has a 4WD – caravan jet skies and boat

This castle has one thing amiss – a 21st century moat

The fuel bill is of no concern – with everything power based

Do they care or can’t they see – what greed creates, is waste
 
Walk or ride to the corner store – can help improve your mood

People too busy with their lives – and eat fast and fatty food

Rushing only increases stress – surely some can be erased

Work out daily at the gym – time and money are waste
 
One night we had a restaurant meal – it was all presented nice

They said the food was locally grown – excepting for the rice

I watched a waiter on return – with uneaten food on plates

Organically grown and fresh supplied – and now it’s going to waste
 
For all of those who over-indulge – their habits could be replaced

Only use what you really need – some changes could be embraced

Food is mass produced with haste – add preservatives for taste
What we eat it could be laced – with a secret killer paste

© Daryl Barnes 2016
 




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