Recently I can’t help but feel overwhelmed when I walk into a supermarket. Perhaps the lockdown has made me see more clearly. It has exposed, like it has exposed many things, deep contradictions in our food system. At once, we glimpsed, perhaps for the first time in our lives, the possibility of empty shelves. We … Continue reading The supermarket trip
a poetic meander on noticing nature during quarantine I have started noticing things. Started to breathe a little. Stichwort and celandine tumble through the hedgerows, as they always did, except now they have names, and an attentive audience of one. Abounding dandelion, brilliant and boisterous, “steep their petals for wine”. Angelic clustered stars of … Continue reading Learning to be still
I felt a great sadness this morning, walking to work on relatively deserted streets, opening a pub to very few customers - bar the die-hard St Paddy’s day celebrators. The escalation of coronavirus impacts, from tougher government measures to the cancellation of Glastonbury, has instilled in me a growing sense of disquiet and precarity. Undoubtedly the majority of us are feeling similarly on edge, anxious and confused.
Through the pink door at Number 11 Brunswick Square, into a homely room filled with the everyday sounds of tea-making and gentle chatter about the weather. The staircase goes up and up, walls decorated with huge, beautiful batik murals and bold graphic posters in the vintage style of soviet propaganda. The posters host important messages: … Continue reading Drug policy: harm reduction over abstinence
The rain seems to have deterred no-one: huge crowds were already gathered on College Green by the time we arrived by 11am, bobbing gently to the Bee Gee's 'Stayin Alive' echoing from the speakers. Despite Bristol police issuing dramatic warnings of 'crushing and falling' and overall 'inadequate safety' at the event (to which Bristol Youth … Continue reading Greta comes to Bristol
‘"Young, straight, faster-growing trees aren’t better than older, rotting trees?", "Better for us. Not for the forest. In fact, young, managed, homogenous stands can’t really be called forests."' - Richard Powers, The Overstory It struck me recently, walking through the fiercely managed forests of Bellever, Dartmoor, that my childhood experience of forests as rich, tangled, ancient … Continue reading This is not a forest
The definition of ‘nature’ is at once very familiar yet incredibly elusive, as the philosopher Kate Soper recognised. To the majority of Western societies, it is something that is spatially contained outside of us. It is managed, quantified, enjoyed in designated portions, conserved, destroyed, consumed… and disappearing, at a terrifying rate. However, the concept of nature … Continue reading Humans / Nature