They are evacuating Eden and I don't know what to say.

Firefighters are doorknocking Eden to get people to evacuate.

The roads on the Monaro are clogged with people escaping.

A watertank collapsed in Cooma.

I can barely see past my neighbours house here for smoke and I am 5 hours away.

Australia has been the lucky country, by and large. So far from the rest of the world that its troubles do not reach us easily, or quickly.

We watch other places become war zones and we change the channel to the footy.

We marvel at tornadoes and we murmur our gratitude that we face few of those problems here.

Today, we are the warzone, the ravaged land.

Dust has settled across the paper of my notebook, leaving the window open I wipe a fingerful of grit and dust from the page of my shopping list.

We are at war with nature, as it has ever been for colonial settlement, fighting the floods, the fires, the drought.

We who think we possess this land are as easily stricken from it as the dust wiped from my page.

These things are the impersonal account of an angry planet, the fruits of what we have planted in greed and ignorance.

The commonwealth of coal, of carbon dug back up from the ground and burned for this profit of destruction.

When the air is poison, what will the powerful breathe? What words will they use to explain their own destruction, to deny it further?

Today I weep for my friends and neighbours, this Australian nation, my beloved New South Wales, that we must endure so hard a lesson and watch as paradise burns.


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