Citing a desire not to be tied down, the last tree on earth announced Wednesday that it is “not really into the whole ‘tree’ thing.”
The lone survivor of rampant deforestation, the 25-year-old quaking aspen in rural Alberta is, experts confirm, the last living tree of any species still in existence. When approached for comment, however, the tree groaned mightily and launched into a diatribe against the pressures of “societal norms” and “the man,” a target that came up seventeen times over the course of the interview.
“What is a tree, even?” the aspen submitted. “A shill for Big Paper? A home for happy little chirpy birds? Is that what you people want? It makes me sick.”
The tree refused to discuss both the rich history of its kind and the sad turn of fate that resulted in its being the last of its line. Instead, it played a mixtape of its spoken word poetry, with pauses between each track for commentary. Its poetry is, according to the tree, “heavily influenced by Finnish folk tales of the 14th century but with a natural progression toward gangster rap of the early ’90s.”
In a lighter moment, the tree presented several graphite drawings, a jar of homemade sauerkraut, and described a seemingly improvised pilot for a medical drama.
When asked about its plans for the future, the tree produced an acoustic guitar and diddled for several minutes.
“I guess you could say I’m still finding myself,” the tree said while strumming back and forth between G and C chords. “I haven’t found my true calling yet, but I know it’s something creative. I’m very creative, you know. I’m just so full of ideas, man. If I don’t create, I die.”
When pushed, the tree clarified: “The one thing I don’t want to be is a tree. My dad was a tree, and look where that got him.”
A squirrel close to the tree reported that the aspen has always been self-absorbed, preferring a showy existence to being a team player. “Nature is brutal,” said the squirrel, which routinely strips the aspen’s bark, hastening the tree’s demise. “I’m making contingency plans.”