raintree no. 5

thus the raintree fell

gang raped
by three men wearing balaclavas
riding big black well-oiled horses

first in a cherry picker one stood
in a mucky orange plastic bin
dangling defiantly from one end
of an engineered arm swaying
to the sound of running engine
moving to an instinct to wield
big weapons as a machine with
rotating teeth did chew through
moist naïve chlorophyll wispy
with pink feather crowns fallen

second manipulated a metal arm
with three joints to lift bundles
of severed angsana limbs lying
bleeding, dying on the ground
piling them onto a yawning tray
hungry for freshly cut chops
accompanied by the snarling
of a chain-driven saw deftly
making its way through the
frontline of a botanical army

third had a passive role merely
to ensure that the dead bodies
with dislocated limbs are disposed
with them the evidence of the kill
as he numbly emptied small loads
into the banged up metal coffin
a prison of solid windowless walls
the size of a small container box
—painted green as if to console—
on the back of third black horse

and thus the rain fell

by Madeleine Lee
from fiftythree/zerothree (2004)