first to nibble, to lick
the great girth of the ancients,
find unauthorised entry, a dry crack.
Settled in at the heart of each old-wood mountain,
from a thousand steady years you fashion
a crimson toothed tower
to plunge suddenly sideways
into dark flesh
opening yet another bright wound.
You are closing in for the kill
of the slow, contemplative life,
the earth-cradle community of rainforest.
In November 2019, bushfire reached Terania Creek rainforest in Northern New South Wales for the first time in over a thousand years. The old brush box trees were the catalyst.
In addition to academic publications and a biography Nola has published two poetry collections: Even if the Sun (Melbourne Poets Union, 2013) and Counting on Murwillumbah (Mark Time Books, 2018). She has won or been short listed for several national poetry prizes. She lives on Bundjalung land in northern NSW.