Seasonalight

Light Seeking

Notes on ‘Trying for Ambivalence.’

In this  piece of prose, I am expressing myself at a juncture in life, a collision of complex matters that are important to me right now, and causing me much emotional pain ~ love, Earth crisis, cancer.

I hope to explore the idea that some ambivalence, far from being malign in relationships (with humans, non humans, self and in our work ~ protecting the biosphere and machines), must be embraced as part of the process (fundamentally, I am a process philosopher). There would be a point where rejection and change is wise ~ letting go ~ but no relationship will ever be perfect. … Read more

Trying for Ambivalence.

“Love, in relation to ambivalence, has its own vicissitudes. Our recognition that these are inevitable – and indeed an internal part of love – allows them to seem less a reason to give up. And, of course, the same point applies in our sense of those we love.” 

John Armstrong, Conditions of Love; The philosophy of intimacy.

~~~~~~~~

Clipped in, I drive home. Snow dusts itself around the windscreen-wipers and a low sun feels to be piercing. I am in pain. The return home from the cancer centre is a little complicated, no direct bus route and a bit too far for me to ride a bike. … Read more

Boardwalking.

Boardwalk, Cardiff Bay Wetlands. Photo by me. 2019

Cardiff Bay rolled out in front of me, gold foil under an open sky. The light hummed a deep serene as I walked out on to the boardwalk. I wanted to commune with wild birds. Black-headed gulls preened and feather-shook to forge water diamonds in the early evening glow some distance away. I leaned over the hand rail and a mute swan gazed up in full expectation of food.

Built sturdily for the likes of me in my chemo-altered state of compromise, I was grateful for the access. I was grateful to be alive. … Read more

Towards the Picascene

Curious Maggie, photo by me.

Observe a European magpie, Pica pica, balancing on a perch in the wind. She’s a whirl of black and white feather-tempest, a stunning aves with a glint in each onyx eye. If sunbeams infuse among her barbules, purple-blue-green iridescence radiates out as a thing to behold.

I live in a small attic flat on a hill in the city. There’s a big balcony and a view over slate rooves to a wide southern sky. From here, I watch all my rooftop birds as masters of their medium ~ the craft of flight in the dynamics of the toposphere. … Read more

End of environmentalism, beginning of life-ism.

My daughter’s young hands in the River Wye. Photo by me.

 … Read more

Ottery; on self and the other.

Fish scale in otter spraint on a fallen oak leaf between my fingers.

Otter spraint stained the smooth rock with a redness I’d not seen before. A translucent fish scale and tiny bones glowed in the shade beneath wintry stems crouching over the river’s edge. I’d been there a long while before noticing it.

My intent was not to think about treatment. Nor cancer. Nor my complicated life, in general. I just wanted to ‘fly-wheel,’ drift. Have some me-time. I didn’t even want to think.

Chemotherapy makes my skin sensitive. Finding myself alone, I braved it without a hat, the air whispering around my exposed ears. … Read more

The route to the end of the road.

“Then they set out along the blacktop in the gunmetal light, shuffling through the ash, each the other’s world entire.”
― Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Sydney Harbour Bridge, photo by me.

Humans have been blazing trails for millennia. Our early ancestors followed the tracks of large migratory mammals who easily forged routes through the thickets of the wild. Then came the more orderly block pavias of early civilizations to resist the wear of the wooden wheel. The Romans made the roads straight and long, weapons of empire. Then, eventually, came the blacktops, McAdam’s sealed and tarred roads that we have come to expect today. … Read more

Towards the Fire, by Gracie-Anne Battson.

© John McColgan 2000 ~ elk taking refuge from forest fire in a river.

Taking on the climate emergency, my daughter writes…

“At first, I couldn’t see the fire. I walked freely through the verdant forest, full too with fragrant wildflowers, and saw no sign of trouble; the air was fresh, the ground cool.

Walking on, smoke permeated around me, a subtle sourness tinging the air. I couldn’t see it, or hear it. Sometimes, I doubted whether I could trust any of my senses.

Soon, though, it was visible. Grey streaks darkened the sky, and my eyes watered. The bitter fog intensified and became impossible to ignore. … Read more

Reply to my letter to Kirsty Williams AM, Cabinet Secretary for Education, Wales.

 

29 October 2018

 

Dear Ginny Battson

Thank you for your email of 10 October to the Cabinet Secretary for Education in relation to the ecoliteracy within the curriculum. I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Cabinet Secretary.

The Welsh Government is committed to supporting our young people to develop the knowledge and skills they need to become active, ethical and informed citizens of Wales and the world; which includes in the current curriculum engaging with topics delivered through Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship (ESDGC). Through ESDCG learners explore the links between society, economy and environment and our own lives and those of people throughout the world. … Read more

The Bheramon

Lismore Lighthouse, nr Oban. Photo by me.

“Cease being intimidated by the argument that a right action is impossible because it does not yield maximum profits, or that a wrong action is to be condoned because it pays.” Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac

So much fury is coming our way, those of us who bear the burden of understanding extreme capitalism, and the vast global inequity it perpetuates, is fuelling Earth Crisis.  The more we shine the light, the more profound the insecurity of those who benefit from it. From the alt-right to the eco-modernists, we are the object of increasing anger. … Read more

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