The following piece of collective poetry was written by the 2008-2009 Earthrights School of Burma students as part of their English as a Second Language study. – Burma School Students Create Collective Poem

eri_12 As a warm-up exercise in their ESL class, the students were given the phrase “When the light filters through the trees and warms my face and eyes,” on a piece of paper. Equipped with recent classes in earth rights issues and an expanded environment-related vocabulary, each student took a turn completing the thought, folded the paper over so that their contribution remained hidden, and passed it on. The collective result was this piece of poetry about the environment being a constant source of joy, inspiration and courage!
When the light filters through the trees and warms my face and eyes…
I walk and my feelings are good and the breeze touches my face,
The animals are kidding each other and running side by side and being so lovely,
When I see it I feel so satisfied,
When I live in the countryside… I sit and watch the birds fly to their home when the sunset is behind the mountain,
We grow the flowers for our beautiful life,
When I arrive in forest it makes me peaceful and happy, I hear sweet voices and many birds,
Birds make their house on the trees and sing peacefully about their lives,
I feel fresh and thankful to God for giving me one more beautiful day to live,
The sunlight shines, the forest is beautiful and the birds sing songs that make me remember,
Many species make a song, uncountable species make a noise…. I cannot imagine their lives….
I pray that in every tomorrow to come all living things will be happy and well,
As the beautiful birds live on the trees, they sing a song to me every day….
I am so happy when I hear the birds singing on the tree,
It all sends my spirit to the canopy, and I start feeling the emancipation. And I …
Hold the eternal beauty and share the priceless gifts with the earth,
I hear the birds sing a song on the trees and it gives me happiness,
I hear the sweet song and beautiful melody sung by the birds that come from the rainforest and it makes me want to be happy for the whole day,
It makes me feel blessed and brave in my heart when I feel it.

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