Melaleuca quinquenervia means black and white, five nerves. The bark is as soft as chamois leather. The leaves have five lines running down their length.
The ant who walked on the first Melaleuca quinquenervia leaf said, “there is but one poem“, and no ant has written a poem ever since. Perhaps there is a misunderstanding of the wise ant’s words.
Always look under the leaves of the paperbark tree. You may find that poem, or you may find the music that ants write for their choirs. Can you imagine what they sing: the soldier ants, the honey ants, the fire ants, the tiny ants in the pantry, the huge ants under the old red gum, the ants who clear the path across the lawn, the ants who sailed across to the off-shore island, the flying ants? Can you imagine their choirs singing?
under the paperbark