Forehead and nose scrunching
against the glass,
agitated eyes cast out their gaze.
Maple, Birch, Oak and Pine,
all laid about in clumps.
Maple’s bright scarlet,
Oak’s sweeping silhouette,
Birch’s pale arms,
Pine’s dark scabs,
Intermingled among the uniform treeline.
A sea of green spreading around her.
She once sat among those trunks,
and skipped over their fallen family,
collected their leaves for her books,
and caressed their branches.
She made shelter out of their roots,
gathered carpets of their leaves.
Their biology, so varied and complex,
were hers to decipher.
She had watched their growth,
and them hers.
Even when she left their company
for seven trillion humans,
When she ordered their execution,
with her wasteful disposition.
If she came back crying,
Hurt by Society,
The forest of a trillion trees
Will stand guardian.
Their leaves will chime welcome.
Their branches will hide her away from the sun’s glare.
Their trunks will be an anchor in the wind.
She reached out a hand, the screen cool and hard.
The switch turned off.
The monitor turned black.
The trees are gone.
In this fictional world, humanity drove trees to extinction. The narrator is looking at a digital rendition of a forest, and reflecting back on her childhood memories playing in the forests, hoping for the trees to protect her again only for the screen to turn off. The forest is a metaphor for childhood(hence the name Cradle of Life), as the image of a trillion trees inspired a sense of curiosity in me close to that of a child looking out at the world. The twist at the end then represent the cynical fact that we cannot return to the innocence and wonder of out childhood despite our longing.