The Dodder Whispers

My name is Baggi, one cool black cat. Living in a small estate called Riverview. It`s right across
the road from a river called the Dodder. One day a few years ago I fell from a car and hurt
myself badly and to this day I walk with a wiggle. Lots of people laugh at me when I run too
because its looks so funny. Fortune favoured me that day as I was looking for somewhere to
rest after my fall and the first garden I could get into is the one I now call my own, where I
found my new forever mom.
We love to go across the road, my mom and I, to an incredibly quiet and private spot by the
River. We sit and listen while the river whispers stories to us. We do our best to look after the
area and I protect mom while she is doing it. Life was good and we loved our special spot by the
Then one day we heard the Dodder cry. A few years back my mom had gone to work. There
was a huge commotion across the road, desperate to get out to investigate I unfortunately had
to wait until mom got home. Moms little red car pulled into the driveway and I ran to the door
as I usually did to greet her.
Waited for what seemed like an age, I could hear mom upset on the phone to someone, then
crying on the doorstep. Eventually she came in, immediately getting ready to go over to the
river. In my excitement I followed without question.
That is when I saw our special place, completely flattened, all the beautiful trees cut down, the
ground razed. I heard mom on the phone saying, “Everything is gone, the trucks came and
knocked everything down, it’s too late.”
We sat in our usual spot on the edge of the river and mom cried. All I could do was sit and
protect her, trying to comfort her with the occasionally head butt. We sat there for a long time
and listened. That day the whispers of the Dodder turned to cries, weeping for the loss of life
and misplaced wildlife that called her banks home.
It is difficult to forget the sadness I felt coming from the River and my mom that day. We all
shared a long, whispered conversation. For weeks after this tragedy we had some wonderful
visitors to our wild garden at night. They were making their way from the ruined riverine in
search of food and safety. We left out water and food for them and built a wildlife friendly
gateway to our protected garden. Some of the wildlife watched from the window were
badgers, squirrels, foxes and hedgehogs.
Months passed and spring arrived, the wildlife visits became less frequent except for our
resident hedgehogs who now lived in our garden. We resumed our visits to our special spot
by the Dodder and something miraculous had started to happen. When the trees had been
chopped down it had allowed the sunlight in.
The most amazing array of wildflowers had been allowed to grow and spread. What was once a
beautiful woodland riverine had now been transformed into a gorgeous wildflower meadow,
right on the banks of the Dodder. The gentle hum of the bees was music to our ears with
butterflies of all colours decorating the sky.
Mom always said nature will find a way. I do not know what the conversation was between my
mom and the river that fateful day the river cried however I can guess that my mom made
promises to protect the riverine as best she could. By protecting it and allowing it to recover the
riverine regenerated itself without any further intervention. It found a way to use the pillage of
our environment to recover and progress.
Mom can be heard babbling about biodiversity and talking to people about rewilding but I
haven’t a clue what she is on about, all I know is that we still go down to the banks of the
Dodder to our special place to sit and listen. The whispers of the Dodder can still be heard, can
you hear them?
“If you go down to the Dodder today
You`re in for a big surprise,
If you go down to the Dodder today
You won’t believe your eyes,
For every creature that ever there was
Will gather there for certain because
The dodders the place to be protected.”