An alternative Narrative

As mentioned in my last post, we have the Black Nature In Residence Showcase coming up on the evening of 28 October.

This is the first event in a series that identity on tyne through their Earth Sea Love project are collaborating with Northumberland National Park to host.

Other events offered as an alternative to the Future Landscape Programme that will run at the same tine at COP26 in Glasgow, will provide diverse voices to the environmental and conservation movement and makes those all important links between the local and global in terms of the climate crisis.

Starting on 11 November, 7.30-8.30pm – Decolonising the Environmental Movement

I’ll be hosting a conversation with Sarah Hussain and Serayna Solanki

Through their projects and research, both Sarah Hussain and Serayna
Solanki are providing spaces for marginalised communities and people of
colour to engage with nature as a means of changing the narrative around
who has a say in the Climate Change Movement. They are working within
education and research, community and organisational partnerships, to create
and highlight dialogue around climate justice through personal and community
storytelling.

Then 18 November, 7-8pm, Nature Writing Reading

Join me , as host again, with Jo Clement and Zakiya McKenzie for a reading and discussion of literature which explores place, environment, belonging and identity as both writers read from and talk about their recent collections.

Then on 22 November, 7-8pm – A keynote lecture with Grace Hull, Holistic Sustainability

What is holistic sustainability?

Grace Hull created Green Grace Soul to share her journey to living sustainably in a holistic way. Grace attempts to balance the food she eats, the products she uses and the things she buys with the most beneficial outcomes for her health, the health of the planet, and the others living on it.

Sustainable living and Climate Change activism have many faces, and by centring holistic sustainability Grace engages with intersectionality and the social and historical context of climate change through the reflections of her journey that she shares on her website, podcast and DIY projects.

This will be a keynote lecture followed by a Q and A.

When the wife leaves Without closing the door

In the shape of a tree,

my scar is painted with code.

Through the letting of blood, I wait

for the sound of my screams.

But what I do not plan for

is the mashed up sycamore spinners,

the trampled copper conkers

and the singed bramble bushes.

Graceless and broken,

I get high on the thoughts

of owning myself; the plumage

of starlings embroidered

on an intimate mind. 

Draft – Flipped inside out 003

I learn to be here, becoming,

as each riding curl of water,

rolls towards my toes

and retreats.

Nothing stays the same here

– liminal layered space/ place.

Black Sea – Sea black.

Night is my skin …

These sands must testify

for the desires of the masters

and yet I stand here breathing

not doubting my black toes

digging in, claiming healing.

Black Sea, liquid black.

Water meets water and connects.

To take these steps into the dark

is coming home, is letting go.

Is enough. 


Draft- Flipped inside out 002

I learn to be here, becoming,
as each riding curl of water,
rolls towards my toes
and retreats.

Nothing stays the same here

– liminal layered space/ place

Black Sea – Sea black.
Night is my skin …


These sands must testify

for the desires of the masters

and yet I stand here breathing

not doubting my back toes

digging in, claiming healing

A Million Tiny Sherees

I feel like I’m holding a million little Sherees
in my arms and each one with a need to be fulfilled.


I’m lost, not knowing what to do for the best,
who to listen to the first. All are fragile and in pain.

They’re little me’s at different times in my life.

The little puffy afro-ed toddler.
The dreadlocked housewife.
The first school bunchies kind of kid.
The jet black straight haired newborn.
The baldy divorcee.

Mini Sherees all making noise
vying for my attention, craving love
wanting to be seen and healed.

I’m afraid one will slip through my fingers,
or I’ll break the neck of another.
It’s a huge responsibility to carry myself
alone. And not allowing one single Sheree in.

Becoming whole

After Megan Fernandes 

Sometimes, I could see Daddy,

liming along the sea walls of Trini

racing in the hills between the metal shacks 

clothed under a black blanket dotted

with diamonds holding wishes of England

whispered from thick black lips.

I’ve been waiting on Summer like a promise.

Sweating under breasts, I’m reluctant to cross

over the threshold, the weight of this black body

offending everybody and including me.

Some days, I imagine silver light shed 

along the shoreline. Probing sand eels

leaving spiralling piles of sand and shit.

Grace is not something I wear. Except

one time after pulling myself together again in

Iceland’s otherworldly landscape.

Daddy kept his island parcelled in fur, under 

the bed, never to drift out and cocoon me in home.

At midlife crisis, I’m knee-deep in this man-made

forest, serpents for hair, munching waxcaps, knowing 

it’s not wise, but mesmerised by their ruby rubber

ness, knowing there’s no escape looking in the mirror

WildThings

numb feet

throbbing thighs

the burning thin skin of elbows

pain is real and immediate

teeth bared like a wildthing

sharp intake of breath whistles

but the singing after the stinging

is the nectar is the blooming

blossoming rush of love

for the moment, for life, for self