The Strange History and Legend of the Moran Moor
Extract Ten. The Mystical Nature of Time and Space
Anyone reading a description of the lagoon and lakes in Julien’s era would consider themselves quite capable of imagining the topography he and Two Moons visually experienced, but of course they would be entirely mistaken. The footprint remains much the same and will ever continue to do so but the merest glance around will impress any onlooker with the total lack of any major flora from that period. Even the tallest and most magnificent of present day trees would have been decades from any beginning, for such second and third generation trees were as invisible then as first generation specimens are now, the vagaries of commercial exploitation having swept its all-consuming hand across the landscape without one single exception. Surprisingly, the trails would still wind in the same apparently illogical pathways, deer and all manner of wild creatures continuing to follow the natural lay of land without reference to the passage of any human contrived calendar or logic.
As with the large so follows the small. Many of those most abundant plants and vegetative growths we now so happily enjoy would have as yet been many a decade from existence or even consideration. Whilst ferns, grasses, lichens and mosses remain universal any homo sapiens propagated flora would then be but possibility rather than reality. No non indigenous rose, buddleia, forget me not, no acres of majestic digitalis throwing their purple flowered spears towards an eagerly welcoming sun, no cultivated variety of apple, pear, cherry, not even those we now designate heritage, the development of modern agricultural whim has little if any relevance to the islands original natural order.
Fauna has changed little, except perhaps in volume, density and viability. Bears rarely grace the islands now except for the occasional lost and sensorially confused visitor, deer whilst still plentiful have perhaps lost the naturally selected quality that a well-balanced natural ecosystem produces, quality control now being more dependent on the chance of vehicular interference in breeding programs than Darwinist selection of the strongest, or even the well-considered culling of selective long term hunting. Gray squirrels would still have vied with their red cousins for supremacy, Norwegian rats, scourge of permanent manmade structures still awaited freedom scurrying pensively somewhere amid one ocean or another. Rabbits of the wild variety would have scampered from ever needful cooking spits or ever watchful circling great eagles, perhaps even a wild dog or two would have roamed through forest and undergrowth in a willful search for subsistence.
Fish were ever plentiful in ocean, stream and lake, whilst abundant pods of far ranging blackfish held sway in the deep waters betwixt island chain and mainland. The indigenous peoples were fishermen first and foremost so the wonder of sea salmon existing in inland lakes would have added an inherent layer of mystery to each and every catch, whilst the wonderous great blackfish, both because of their inherent threat to even the stoutest war canoe and their ability when overcome to feed an entire tribe for several weeks held a unique place both physically and spiritually.