(and the years flow by, fast as light and slow as thought)

I spread

My branches

I stretch

My roots

(and the creatures of the forest burrow beneath me and climb upon me)

I drink

The water

I breathe

The wind

(and my needles are food and shelter to the smallest of them)





(and the rumble of machinery draws nearer, a toxic breeze)

They come

They see

They protect

They guard

(the two-footed ones the long-haired ones they live with me so I do not die)

They leave

I wait

More come

I awake

(and I walk like the two-footed ones and the blue light surrounds me)


… what exactly are you wearing?

I look (not exactly, but humanoid intelligence brings humanoid idiom) down at myself. It’s known as tie-dye, I ‘say’. I like it.

It is hardly normal attire for a Plant.

I look at the Sunflower Official in his pinstripe suit, and decide not to comment. It’s what they wore – the ones who protected me. I wear it in honour of them.

I suppose that makes sense, the SO grudgingly allows. Now, to business. We would like to give you Headship of a Division in the Department of Mary-Sues. You understand?

The Wisteria has explained everything, I confirm. Not that that means I understand everything – I’m a Tree, and a high-speed Flower like the Wisteria (it enjoys jogging, if you can credit it) is a bit much for me.

Excellent. Now, we have a few possibilities – Sherlock Holmes, Star Trek, an up-and-coming thing called ‘Anime’ – but I think-

Did you say… stars? I ask. I always was fond of stars. And trekking is something I know a great deal about.

No, Star Trek is… The SO pauses for thought. It’s set in space. It was written in the Real World’s 1960s, so it-

Then I will take it, I say firmly. I am fond also of the 1960s.

The SO ‘looks’ at me for a long time, then shakes his blossom. You really are a hippie, aren’t you? he says in despair. I have no lips, but I smile inside.

Yes, I am. I’m the Hippie Sequoia.