I cast around for literature, words to find myself – ourselves – in. I need to get my head around the weirdness of sharing my body with another and my changing sense of self. Pregnancy books discuss the physical changes, but fall silent on the mental and emotional experience of becoming an ‘us’, no longer a ‘me’.
Thousands of animal species are threatened by anthropogenic climate change. Here is a small sample. Axolotls are those enchanting salamanders, limb-growers, Bowie-esque in style and, now, frequency. Bicknell’s thrush with confetti of stars on breast, insect quests no longer synchronised. Coral (staghorn), crystalline dendrites of the deep, food for many before warming and mass bleach.
I own an animal that will live longer than anyone I know. She will outlive the next generation and the generation after that. When you buy a tortoise, no one tells you how much you will think about death. But when you have something living in your house that will outlive you by a century, mortality hangs in the air.
The outdoor swimming pool was in the shape of a wonky figure of eight. A bridge crossed its middle. They said it was the biggest pool in Europe. The concrete border was patterned with circles in different sizes. If you fell, the surface was hard and unforgiving. Each bulb of the pool was pinned with two sets of diving boards; four and five boards layered on top of one another.