Sacred Environment – libretto
the finger nails.
The sound of bodies,
in the air,
Corymbia Eximia, Corymbia Gummifera, Corymbia Maculata, Eucalyptus Beyeriana, Eucalyptus Consideriana, Eucalyptus Punctata, Eucalyptus Pilularis, Eucalyptus Propinqua, Eucalyptus Agglomerata, Syncarpia Glomulifera, Angophora Costata, Angophora Bakeri.
the sounds of bodies,
in the air,
Eucapyptus Molucana, Eucalyptus Siderophloia, Eucalyptus Propinqua, Eucalyptus Punctata, Eucalyptus Crebra, Sycarpia Glomulifera, Corymbia Maculata, Angophora Costata, Angophora Bakeri, Corymbia Eximia, Corymbia Gummifera, Eucalyptus Sclerophyla, Eucalyptus Sparsifolia, Eucalyptus Deanei, Eucalyptus Agglomerata.
we see the bush through her eyes,
yet she herself cannot see.
Her hands are raw,
red around the tips of her fingers,
and the rest of her body,
is in darkness,
except a line captured by,
a rare ray of moonlight
though an aperture,
in the canopy.
Mud and Shadows are mixed.
Her outfit is white
but smeared with earth,
and there is a band across her eyes,
made from the same cloth
I surrender to you,
She has chosen not to make a decision.
To do so she has closed her eyes.
There is a sudden chill,
a faint smell of smoke,
a rising rush of wind,
particles of ash.
The air changes.
We don’t know if she is alone.
We cannot tell whether the shapes, bodies, limbs and skin are hers,
or the increasingly humanlike branches of trees, ferns and scrub.
Libera me, Domine, de morte aeterna, in die illa tremenda, quando coeli movendi sunt et terra. Dum veneris iudicare saeculum per ignem.
Tremens factus sum ego, et timeo, dum discussio venerit atque ventura ira
Quando coeli movendi sunt et terra.
Dies illa, dies irae, calamitatis et miseriae, dies magna et amara valde.
Dum veneris iudicare saeculum per ignem.
A.T. B. Choir
Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine et lux perpetua luceat eis.
Quartz Arenite, Silica, Siderite, Chalybite, Calcite, Ankerite, Dolomite, Mica, Muscovite, Biorite, Alkali Feldspar, Albite, Anorthoclase, Microline, Orthoclase, Sanidine, Plagioclase, Feldspar, Anorthite, Bytownite Labradorite, Andesine, Oligoclase, Albite, Kaolinite, Illite, Chlorite, Smecite, Zircon, Tourmaline, Rutile, Hornblende, Pyroxene, Garnet, Epidote, Apatite, Andalusite, Magnatite, Carbonate, Haematite, Pyrite.
They join her as companions and accompany her on this journey led by what she hears. She navigates her mind, a great Cathedral of caves and ridges ornamented with roots and giant trunks of trees.
Blindfolded, this woman is led into the bush. She can hear and smell and feel but she cannot see and she will not speak.
Melithreptus Gularis, Xanthomyza Phrygia, Pomatostomus Temporalis, Ninox Strenua
Tyto Novaehollandiae, Tyto Tenebricosa, Dasyurus Maculatus, Phascogale Tapoatafa, Phascolarctos Cinereus
She surrenders to her fate and listens without judgement.
Cercartetus Nanus, Petaurus Australis, Petaurus Norfolcencis, Petrogale Penicillata, Pteropus Poliocephalus, Mormopterus Norfolkensis
She carries with her the burden of memory and the burden of fear but she is not afraid.
Chalinolobus Dwyeri, Miniopterus Austrealis, Minipterus Schreibersii, Scoteanax Rueppellii
S/ B. Choir
Heleioporus Australiacus, Pseudophryne Australis, Varanus Rosenbergii, Hoplocephalus Bungaroides Ixobrychus Flavicollis.
She allows herself to be vulnerable, there is no escape, no help. She accepts that.
Her mind is filled with the sound of near and far, the smell of life and death, the sense of light and dark.
Melithreptus Gularis, Xanthomyza Phrygia, Pomatostomus Temporalis, Ninox Connivens, Ninox Strenua, Tyto Novaehollandiae, Tyto Tenebricosa, Dasyurus Maculatus, Phascogale Tapoatafa, Phascolarctos Cinereus, Cercatetus Nanus.
She feels warm and cold but she is not afraid.
Tachyglosidae, Dromaius Novaehollandiae, Varanus, Macropodiae, Tachyglosidae, Varanus, Dromaius Novaehollandiae
Petaurus Australis, Petaurus Norfolkensis, Petrogale Penicillata, Pteropus Poliocephalus
Arm, a back, genitals, a wound, a nose, a face, a lump, a tattoo, an ant, a spider’s web.
Lacrimosa dies illa qua resurget ex favilla judicandus homoreus.
Lacrimosa. Lacrimosa dies illa.
Sirius, Polaris, Canopus, Antares, Betelgeuse, Arcturus, Capella, Spica, Aldebaren, Alpha Centauri, Proxima Centauri, Regulus, Altair, Deneb, Vega, Eta Carinae, Castor, Polux
In each hand she balances
lore and progress,
Nature and destruction,
nurture and obliteration,
freedom and subjugation.
One move and both sides shall tumble,
she knows that and accepts her fate.
Behind her a treacherous sea and the promised land,
or a barren land.
Before her is the bush,
an open book in an ancient script to be deciphered.
Vega, Regulus, Capella, Altair, Deneb
She says nothing.
She is silent,
ready to listen,
submitting to her fate.
She is unable to speak or move.
She accepts her situation with repose.
Her arms are crossed against her heart.
She is vulnerable, out of her own choice.
She allows herself to be judged.
Behind her is a treacherous sea.
There is no going back, no escape, no help.
She knows this and will not fight.