We are entirely into the gardening season, and I am protecting my wildflowers that grow along my front wall with polite signs (and additional cartoon butterflies), asking neighbours kindly not to “weed”. I am the only person along my row of terraces to allow the flowers to grow freely. Last year, we had red admirals breeding in the low-lying pellatory-of-the wall and plenty of solitary bees and wasps foraging among the dandies and groundsels. This year, a tiny aubretia appeared from nowhere. I hope they grow into a fine clump of purple.
I understand gardening, and even farming, sometimes require us to make choices in confined places. … Read more
Boon or bane, I was born downstream from this place I stand now under unfurling beech leaves, just past the Victoria walking bridge. Down there, around the bend. See it? A red brick hospital is now apartments with annual ground rents and an alloted view. I’ve grown up with my feet in this river, with the mayfly larvae, on sunny picnic days at Bredwardine beach too, knowing— turning wet pebbles in just my toddler’s knickers and sunhat – I was part of it all. This river taught me how to listen and swim. When you are bred into quiet waters and their teresapien communal places, you’re bathed in that soft green song. … Read more
Yesterday, I listened to Boris Johnson’s performance-apology over a Fixed Penalty Notice for partying during the very lockdown he instigated by law, and I am afraid he has brought great shame to our Nation.
My father’s oldest and dearest friend, and therefore influential in my life, was Mr Hugh Rees, Conservative MP for Swansea, a lifelong Conservative member and, truly, a good man. Although we were politically poles apart, he was–every atom–a man of great integrity, honesty and respect. He taught me much about politics and political decision making, as well as the core Conservative value of loyalty to the people.
Another week, another bereavement. Could the grief bus just stop. I want to get off.
Meanwhile, thoughts are whirling around my head, several key projects stacked in my brain’s in-tray. I am returning to studies after a two-month bereavement break and, in all honesty, I am finding it difficult to concentrate on these longer works (though I’m trying), and much beyond my daughter’s imminent A’Levels, or bursts of 280 characters.
I am moving through a period of deep loss, ADHD diagnosis ~ also some kind of loss, but of my old identity ~ and medicine titration; a battle to even get anything from the NHS. … Read more
Without you, I would not have known enduring love, no matter how complex, because it is complex.
Without you, we would not have the most stunning child, who takes my breath away in all she does and says.
Without you, we would not have known and loved Ben.
Without you, I would not have read Riverwalking and walked the philosophical path since. This blog was your idea, one I will always treasure because it was yours. Your name is mine, and always will be. It’s a good strong batty name.
Without you, I would have remained parochial. I would not have read Lopez and Matthiessen. … Read more
Dark rum, rumbullion, rummage, scents, essences and escents (forming adjectives expressing a flux state or action). Now is the time of falling deciduous leaves in the northern hemisphere. For a long while now, I have mulled on a word that describes the prevailing smell for me ~ a sweet, musky, peppery aroma of decaying leaves, depending on the leaf mix ~ as well as the activity of soil enrichment and kicking through them on misty mornings and cooler evenings.
Smell is a powerful provocation of emotion. Emotion may lead to good things, including the for-wiring of the cultural acceptance that we too are nature. … Read more
I have been walking the dried up paths by the river, thinking about emotions of the prescient and ever-increasing burden of Earth Crisis upon everyone (at least everyone who is sane).
Climate or extinction “dread” or “doom” can seem such hopeless words, yet maybe have a rightful place in the hearts of some; those in total despair. For others, life is surviving regardless, caring for others in the face of whatever comes next; no time to allow a creeping then torrential flood of negative emotions that could hamper chances.
So I offer a word that means simply a deficiency of peace (mind, body, soul, ecological, social, and even planetary), a lack of confidence – an edgy feeling on a par with eerie, of craving peaceful conditions that are amiss. … Read more