writing

Enemy of the State

Botanical illustrations of the early modern period (1550-1800), the “big science” of their day, served as documentation of useful plants found in colonial territories. Plants such as tobacco, sugar cane,…

Revisiting a Geography of Hope

To be a farmer, at any point in history, means you grow food. You steward the land – soil, water, air, energy, plants, and animals – and make a living…

Sjoerd van Leeuwen

Landscape Amnesia

As the last horse trailer passes you by on the potholed road you take an exit. Across a green pasture you park the car. You stretch your legs. Gravel grinds…

Editorial: Fields

In May 1982, American artist Agnes Denes began to transform a two acre empty plot at the foot of the World Trade Center into her work Wheatfield – A Confrontation,…

Earth Turned Honey

  Moksha The desert has no memory. Sun beats on its chest, collarbone glistens: I wait for rain, an angry sea filling the sky to break, blow, burn, make a…

Undertow

Walking the Edge A trusted mentor once told me, having read my work, “You often write about the meeting places of land and water.” She was right, though I’d never…

Untranslatable

  Chamomile Freak-show Poisonous in the wild, or so I was told, overtaking the verges on the main road, probably nothing after oversized daisies perhaps, a gem or relaxation abates….

Hommes sous Hommes, II

In 2005, I went to Palestine for three weeks with my parents, my wife and our daughter, aged two. We were invited to carry out workshops with young artists and…

Dicksonia Antarctica

  The Tree Fern I once had a Tree Fern (Dicksonia Antarctica) For many, many years my First view each morning From our upstairs window. Beautiful, sweeping fronds So elegant…

A Weekend on Mars

    This Moment In Time Just when the crescent moon appeared. When the ailanthus shivered. When a heron shook its feathery crown and the little wheel turned inside the…

A Foraged Map

Spread over my kitchen table, emptied from the various cloth bags and tubs, were the wild plants that I’d gathered that day. As I viewed them from above, deliberating as…