Lemn Sissay speaks at the Cambridge Union. Photo by me.
At the top of a wide staircase, under the light of a golden chandelier, I met an elderly man with depth to his eyes, leaning on a stick. We smiled, and began to speak of love and nature ~ that sponteneity, with a stranger. It’s rare. And memorable.
A few moments before, we shared an audience downstairs in the Cambridge Union; the talk by Lemn Sissay at the Cambridge Literature Festival. I have written before about his book, My Name is Why. Now, we were at the back of a long booksigning queue. … Read more
Art by NATASHA ZETA, Cracked Perspective (butterfly piece). Please click on the image for more information about this artist and her work.
Seven years, they say, of bad luck. This UK Election was a mirror, a moment for deep change. And today, it feels like the mirror cracked.
This is precious time; this seven years ahead. This will be time for a very structured organisation, meticulous and detailed (the genius being in the detail) investment in time to slow the worst effects of inequity, racism, climate volatility and ecological depauperation. We can prepare now, away from the political bubble of The City and Westminster and the BBC and the billionaire press, amongst ourselves. … Read more
It happened in a flash. A broad silver flank with a pink tinge lifted clear into river spray, a single twist, and a lunge towards a roaring steep slope of weir. The body jolted and slipped backwards into the white froth from where it had leaped.
He did leap high. I saw him. Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), and most likely a male with all his freckles.
It’s mid November, late salmon-leap time here in Wales. These are the kings of anadromous fish, symlings of the great Arctic pelagos and the free ocean waves. They return thousands of miles ‘home’ using quantum magnetic sensing and smell-vibrations, navigating to their intimate place of spawning in the shallow streams of inland mountains. … Read more
Joe’s Harkness’s Bird Therapy is a thing of healing.
This is a man that has been to the lowest emotional point; the first few opening lines allow a glimpse of the depths of colourlessness that depression can bring, the point at which the pain comes to zero, and there seems nothing left to value, not even life.
Don’t be deterred; there’s great courage here. Through relatable accounts of his re-connection of a life-love of birds, and new paths found, Joe finds his way back from the brink of nothingness to somewhere good, somewhere of vibrance and of song. And he brings us all along with him. … Read more
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
Green Space: Light which has a dominant wavelength of roughly 495–570 nm permeating a void. How could such a phrase be used so frequently, so poorly, to represent complex places of varied natural living process?
The universe is full of space. If life-relations are broken-dead, then all you have is space.
Such banality fails to articulate the interconnectedness of life, fails to inspire us to engage and participate in the power of interconnected living systems, anywhere.
So in keeping with my work on Kinnages, I offer an alternative word, Kinnaria, to describe the koinonia or kin-gathering in the nagorasphere, where all is exchangeable in between those human harder edges. … Read more
“These people have learned not from books, but in the fields, in the wood, on the river bank. Their teachers have been the birds themselves, when they sang to them, the sun when it left a glow of crimson behind it at setting, the very trees, and wild herbs.” —Anton Chekhov, A Day in the Country.
I have been watching old man heron on the Glamorgan Canal, of late. And a dainty little egret at Llandaff Weir. Their organic curves and soft feathers lull me into their lives. I long to communicate with them, if only by brief mutual gaze. … Read more
(Dissertation extract, in continuing the ideal of co-operation, symbiosis and mutualism into, and of, language.)
6.0 Language of Flow: Fluminism, Introducing Spring Theory.
6.1 The Need for Neologisms.
Two particular yet simple words, love and ecology, are my inspiration in the creation of my own neologisms ~ fluminism, and then sanguimund and praximund, the latter two as constituent parts of the former.
As to both words, love and ecology, as lexicons combined, they are complementary. One word is a positive emotion and the other a rational science. Like life itself, it is the combination of both affect and rationale which our brains assimilate as moral constructs and in the choices we make every day. … Read more
To speak of ‘limits to growth’ under a capitalistic market economy is as meaningless as to speak of limits of warfare under a warrior society. The moral pieties, that are voiced today by many well-meaning environmentalists, are as naive as the moral pieties of multinationals are manipulative. Capitalism can no more be ‘persuaded’ to limit growth than a human being can be ‘persuaded’ to stop breathing. Attempts to ‘green’ capitalism, to make it ‘ecological’, are doomed by the very nature of the system as a system of endless growth.