Leave the Land Alone

Leave the Land Alone

We share this land of timeless dreams,
mysteries of tree and bone,
tribal journeys of dance and song
symbols painted on stone.

Songlines of the Indigenes,
they used to call it home,
broken by colonial greed
the land had never known.

We poison the lakes and dam up streams,
this land that is our home,
quarry the hills and cut down trees,
don’t know how to leave it alone.

Why do we break this fragile land
and bring it to its knees?
Our eyes are blind with dollar signs,
so much that we should see.

Do you fear the force of machinery
and big money lying?
it’s hard to live guilt-free
when the country’s dying,

All that’s part of you and me
laid waste by greed and scheming,
don’t you know we’ve taken enough,
Let the land lie dreaming.

Jinjirrie 2007

Senator Bob Brown, leader and founder of the Australian Greens from 1992 until April 2012, has departed politics suddenly, with his position to be filled by Senator Christine Milne. In a country where multi-party plurality is nigh on impossible, the Greens have benefited from growing awareness in the community of the limited nature of our most precious Australian resources – our native fauna and flora, and that on which we all depend for survival – water.

Bob’s charisma and record as an environmental campaigner led many ALP voters disillusioned with Labor’s neoliberalism and environmental compromises to jump ship. How will the Greens fare without Bob at the helm? will the flagging ALP be able to woo back voters and will the party machine have the foresight to incorporate more green promises in order to do so?

Salute, Bob – your common sense and values will be sorely missed in public life – your record as an exceptional advocate for the environment and humanity is unequalled in Australia’s history. I hope you have some happy years of bushwalking and photography and find time to record your memoirs.