Or will the Dreamer Wake? – a poem about endangered species

Out in the East the jungle listens
The tigress, plaintive, growls in pain,
The great trees hear her breathing, shaking
Inside her still, the new lives wait.
These cubs could be the last ones ever
To freely live and roam and mate.
Our grandchild knows the tiger never
Or will the dreamer wake?

Far in the North the white bear snuffles
Down in her lair the gleaming snow
She waits for all the life she’s making
Outside the crashing glaciers grow.
These cubs could be the last cubs ever
To freely live and roam and mate.
Our grandchild knows the white bear never
Or will the dreamer wake?

There in the West the song thrush warbles
She weaves her nest to hold her clutch
A long wait now to find a partner
The eggs are laid, there are not much.
These chicks could be the last ones ever
The last to fly and sing and mate.
Our grandchild knows the song thrush never
Or will the dreamer wake?

Deep in Ocean South the whale swims
Her song of birthing fills the seas
Thousands of creatures wait the moment
The solemn birth that they will see.
This child could sing the final whale song
The last to make the oceans shake.
Our grandchild never hears its mystery
Or will the dreamer wake?

Here in the centre, four directions gather
The path ahead leads up or down
Is this our last bright new world birthing?
Is this our waving as we drown?
This could be our last true moment
Knowing the truth, our choices make.
Our grandchild asks “That was the moment!
And did the dreamer wake?

Medora Chevalier

 

It is fantastic that so many children and teachers in India are reading this poem (more than 3000 views). I am honoured.

A few people have asked me about the meaning of the end and the final stanza.

The centre is the space between the four quarters of the earth – North, South, East and West.   I am thinking about the future. When we are old and the children ask us – will we be able to say that we, humanity, the dreamer, awoke from this false dream we dream in time to change how we live?

So we end with this question. We cannot know the answer – yet.

Thank you for all your lovely comments!

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62 Responses to “Or will the Dreamer Wake? – a poem about endangered species”

  1. Beautiful!

  2. it was so beatuful

  3. Can you please supply a contact address for Medora Chevalier fo a permission request?

    Thank you
    Nick
    Hodder

  4. its so beautiful

  5. Lovely Poem. Where are you from Medora? I am doing a class project on Endangered Species poems.

  6. a nice poem about endangered species

  7. I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW ACCORDING TO YOU WHO IS A DREAMER TIGER OR HUMAN BEINGS PLEASE LET ME KNOW

    • Humanity is the dreamer

    • So sorry I didnt spot your question before Sadhya. I’ve just realised that there is interest now its on the curriculum in India. I saw the dreamer as being Humanity – a huge dreaming giant dreaming a dream that the things that we chase in this life – money, fame, beauty, power – are what really matters. And yet asleep and unconscious of the truly beautiful world and love around us. Time to wake up!

  8. please tell the song composition to sing above poem

  9. a nice poem which speaks about the species that are becoming extinct.could you please explain the meaning of the last stanza?

    • The dreamer is humanity asleep in a dream of the world that believes everything exists to be taken and exploited. Will we awake from this dream and see the truth of the world in time? For some more on the idea see the Pachamama Alliance

  10. Dear MedoraChevalier, could you please elucidate the line “she waitsfor all the life she’s making”

    • Sorry for the delay Sreenivasan. I was thinking of the patience of animals waiting in the present moment for what will be. In this case as she waits for her children to grow and feeds them from her own body. We humans are always worrying about the past or the future. We can learn from the rest of nature that often it is enough to just be. It is very positive and healing to experience that peace.

  11. A really great poem,mrs Medora Chevalia…..I read your poem in my English Reader ,Class 10

  12. ‘she waits for all the life she’s making’ what does this line mean?
    Why the polar bear snuffles?
    I’ll b grateful if u ans it. Lovely poem.

    • I’m so happy to hear from you and others who enjoy this poem. It really warms my heart. The polar bear snuffles – I was “hearing” the sort of ways she will be communicating to her babies – breathing warmth over them, making loving noises, warm and cosy in the space she is making for them while the freezing cold is just outside. Seeing her hot breath misting as she works hard to be ready for their arrival.

  13. I read your poem, nice’ I want to get video and audio for me and for my students please respond

  14. Dear madam..
    Its an awesome poem..
    Thank you for wonderful poem..

  15. I appreciate your concern for the endangered species. When you say “our grand child knows the tiger never” it makes me sad about the extinction of the beautiful animals!

  16. I read the poem that made me think deeply. I’m thankful if you explain the first stanza.

  17. It was a good poem but can i know what does the line “This child could sing the final whale song” means..???

  18. 1. Could you please go through the written/language conventions you used and what effect they have
    2. Could you please tell me what representations and cultural values are conveyed in this poem
    3. What dominant and subordinate understanding may be established from this poem
    Thank you

  19. Medora mam could you please reply to my question

  20. i read the poem and it is really wonderful. your expressions are really good where you touch all the directions and the various threats we are facing. Thank you so much for the poem. could please tell me the summary of the last stanza

  21. Mam, I am worrying about disappear of animals. Please give me summary of this poem.

  22. Sorry not to explain things – I think the words have to speak for themselves 🙂

  23. Beautiful poem . people have to take immediate action to save these animals from being extinct.

  24. hi mam really its a wonderful n heart touching, people have to realize about things……thank you for the wonderful composition

  25. Dear ma’m,
    Familiar to the world with this u’ve become!
    Earlier as the heralds for this we’ll become!!

    Mam,
    People are giving their points of view in many ways but I’m longing to know your point of view.
    With regards!
    N.R.Swamy, AP, India.

  26. […] Or will the Dreamer Wake? – a poem about endangered species […]

  27. Please tell me the tone of the poem

  28. Give a detail explanation of this poem

  29. Mam can u please give a detail explanation of the poem….plz

  30. Very nice poem.I like it because I love animal and nature at the same time I know how to take care of our environment.

  31. Sir plz answer my question
    What are the feelings of the animals?

  32. madam medora, i asked you to send me summary of “or will the dreamer wake?” on 5th september 2015. could you please give the summary that what you exactly intended to say?

  33. I am glad to be a man in contemporary and being able to communicate with the Mam who has deep concern over the endangered species and to hear the words which made many think of the fact….Thank you mam for your beautiful message..

  34. Dear Madam,Thank you so much to present the awesome and message oriented poem.By profession I’m a teacher of English…it is in 10th standard syllabus in India..I wish some more from your pen…I’m so glad to have this poem….Hoping your precious reply….ANAND ANEM.,SKLM DIST,A.P,INDIA.

  35. Really simply superb madam …
    But I need a small help from you..
    May I have complete summary of the poem..plz ?
    Bcz I hv to explain to my students clearly..
    Your message should reach every corner of the World…
    It is “everyone’s duty to protect our Nature”
    Could you plz send me it’s complete summary ?
    Thank you…

  36. Can u pls provide sequence of action of this poem ??
    And by the way itis the awesome poem I have ever read….

  37. Hi Madam,
    I would be pleased if you summarize the last stanza and what would `the centre` mean ?
    Thanking you
    Sunil Kataru

  38. A very great exceptional writer.

    And A dreamer woke up
    KDSVSRK will n’t dream from now
    but protect and conserve animals at
    the brink of extinction

  39. Madam
    Really a great poem to read, teach on the topic of endangered species and how the humanity needs to wake up from the false dream. Madam we should be happy to have more details of your biography and your other poems.

    Thummuri Sharath Babu

    • Thank you for your very kind comment. You reminded me to post this poem about the sea I wrote last month when I was visiting Australia.
      I use a pen name so do not share too much about myself. I live in London and work for a good cause. I enjoy the creativity of virtual worlds and write a lot of my poetry for special occasions often with an ecology or social justice theme. Good wishes. M

  40. Hi,
    it’s difficult for me to understand the lines is this our last bright new world birthing. Please will any one elucidate.

  41. Lively wonderful poem, a great piece of work…thank you

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