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Ode to the Gilbert’s Potoroo

Story by Sophie Chao. This poem fleshes out the lifeworld of the endangered Gilbert’s potoroo since settler-colonization and in the aftermath of the Black Summer. The poem seeks to celebrate the ecological significance of the Gilbert’s potoroo within Australian ecosystems. It also traces the various forms of violence that have been inflicted upon this species by human actors, whose activities increasingly threaten the potoroo’s environment and future. Continue reading Ode to the Gilbert’s Potoroo

Home, Smokey Home

Story by Nicole Webster. Our first child was born on New Year’s Eve 2019. It was a time of mixed emotions for us as we welcomed our daughter into the world before we realised that we could not return to our old fibro home because it could not keep the smoke out. Continue reading Home, Smokey Home

Horror

Story by Dr Jonica Newby. A story of blood-red skies, accidental heroes, a disaster-movie-worthy action sequence, and an incongruous encounter with the film Frozen as ordinary people confront towering fire fronts the size of nightmares. (extracted from Beyond Climate Grief, New South Publishing).
Continue reading Horror


Bushfire Stories is an online platform for people to tell their own stories, in their own ways, about their experiences with bushfire in Australia: how it matters in their lives, their communities, and their landscapes. This project is grounded in the understanding that personal narratives have the potential to explore local complexity in ways that are relatable and meaningful and that can generate broad engagement and connection. We invite you to read others’ stories or to consider submitting one of your own.


Content warning — Please note that some of the stories on this website may contain material that is disturbing for some readers or that could cause distress or trigger traumatic memories. If you need help or just to talk to someone, confidential support is available from Lifeline. Call 13 11 14 or visit www.lifeline.org.au

Acknowledgement of Country — We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the traditional custodians of country in Australia. This project is rooted in the lands of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the area on which the University of Sydney now stands. We pay our respect to their elders, past, present, and to come, and to the country that they have taken care of for innumerable generations. We also acknowledge that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have been skillfully managing fire on this continent for tens of thousands of years and we support the increasing recognition of the value of learning from traditional knowledge practices.