What Did You Mean By…?
The elephants in the story refer to many things using their own terms. My lore dictates that guardians (elephants) were once able to speak with all of the animals except two-legs (humans). Over the years, they lost their ability to speak with any but their own kind. Here are a few terms:
Blood-lace tree – Humans call it the Sausage Tree (Kigelia pinnata). Blood red flowers hang down on rope-like stalks and emit a scent we don’t care for, but that the dwarf epulated bat goes nuts over. Necter from fallen flowers is enjoyed by impala, duiker, baboons, bush pigs, and lovebirds. The long, gray fruits can weigh up to 10 pounds and look like sausages hanging from the tree.
Healing Weed – Mountain Aloe (Aloe Marlothii). A large, single-stemmed aloe, growing 6-13 feet tall with light green, wide, thick, juicy leaves.
Madness Fruit – Marula (Scelerocarya birrea). A type of mango, its fallen fruits, lightly fermented, are a passionate favorite of elephants. Early writers called it the fruit that ‘drives elephants mad.’
Stink Grass – Stinking Grass (Bothriochloa Radicans). No, really! Tufted, bitter aromatic grass that is only grazed in the absence of anything else.
Sweet Grass – Guinea Grass (Panicum Maximum). Green to purple stalks that remain very sweet and green into late winter.