Garden of Eden

Animals are good to think [with]

Animals are good to think [with] – Claude Lévi-Strauss     To be in two minds, think amoeba. To sell tea, think chimp. To build your own beak, think owl….

Juan Fernando Herrán, Campo Santo, 2006

The Beast is not only the Tiger

The top floor of a modernist apartment block seems an unlikely location for the studio of an artist best-known for his engagement with botany. Nonetheless this is where we find…


No Rural Fantasy

The anti-pastoral of Cynan Jones I’m a Londoner through and through; a city person fascinated by everything the city is not. The rural worlds outside of mine are compelling, attractive,…

Books of the Month

May 2021 April 2021 Strange Beasts of China Yan Ge Tilted Axis Press March 2021 Green Unpleasant Land Corinne Fowler Peepal Tree Press February 2021 Yes, I am a Destroyer…

The Dogs of El Chalten

The village of El Chalten is a service settlement. Located in the Parque Nacional los Glaciares in Patagonia, southern Argentina, the village is a four-hour walk to a network of…

Jambi Huasi 2

Psychosis in the Andes

Dr Patricio practices indigenous medicine in a small clinic in the Andes. Sometimes he describes himself as a doctor, sometimes as a yachac or shaman. Here, the two are interchangeable….

Melanie K bubbles

100 poems in a day

On 22nd November 2013, Claire Trevien recklessly agreed to write 100 poems in a single day in order to raise money for Refuge. That’s more than she usually writes in…


Waste (extracts)

You think in the animal kingdom there’s no waste cause you’re nice and shun anthropomorphism but actually there’s a lot I mean you’re nice and don’t want to imbue empty…

John Miles, Gloucester Old Spot, 1834


Toby is one influential pig. As the very first learned pig to turn his tricks upon the stage, he provided a template for countless subsequent acts at fairs and festivals…

Angelita, Ecuador

The Jambi Huasi Clinic

The town of Otavalo, just two hours from Quito, is a place where Ecuador’s indigenous Andean population has thrived for thousands of years. The Quichua indígenas (indigenous people) in Otavalo…

The Island

I. He covers my eyes with a blindfold of elderberries and makes me promise not to peek. He thrusts a lead in my hand and, with a clicking noise out…