from BARDO

The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.

Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made

is star-stuff too?

– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –

dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.

Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.

Roselle Angwin

Saturday, 31 December 2016

a bit more for animals

Yesterday I wrote in a different context about going out quietly into the garden and standing at the hedge watching a sleek healthy young fox first snoozing in a patch of sun, then high-stepping with full alert slowness up the field next door to its boundary with ours. I must have watched it for 20 minutes.

An hour later, there was a cacophony in the garden as maybe 30 hounds poured through it. Given their size, I believe they must have been harriers – in other words taking part in the (of course also illegal) persecution of the tiny colony of hare we are lucky enough as to shelter here still.

Hounds may not know the difference between hare and foxes; the instinct is to chase, and considering they were very interested in the area at said hedge where I know foxes come and help themselves to spilled birdseed, when they gave tongue and set off again up our field I assumed they were after the fox. (We have various fox earths in our field, along with some possibly-now-empty badger setts due to the wrong-minded and terrible badger culls happening here – 11,000 badgers killed this year.)

Whether fox or hare, I was devastated. Have we STILL, as a species, not grown out of our barbarism? In this case in the name of sport? Aren't there more productive ways of having a good time outdoors?

It being the time of year when one makes resolutions, it seems to be a good time to speak of reducing suffering in the world in ways over which we have some control: what we choose to consume or support.

I'm not going to lecture you on going vegan, but I thought I'd give you a gentle nudge in the direction of remembering how we as a species impose such suffering on others of our own species and especially of other species.

This time last year I created a website (see below) about taking a step towards veganism, whatever that means for you: giving up red meat, giving up dairy, sourcing alternatives to leather, whatever it might be. maybe it means being more vocal in protests on the badger cull in England, on fox-hunting, bullfighting, animal testing (eg see

I called it '57 billion' as that was, I thought, the number of land animals eaten each year by humans, globally. Turns out it's more like 64 billion, with over 1 trillion aquatic species.

The current guest blog is from my friend David Ashton.

And from David's blog, here are some words: 'Speciesism, like cannibalism, slavery, religious persecution, racism and sexism, is the imposing of the will of a powerful group upon a weaker group – in this case, by humans upon other sentient species. We take it so much for granted that it often goes unnoticed. But it’s everywhere – not just on our dinner plates and covering our feet, but also at the rodeos, circuses, bullfights, hunting and fishing trips, the fur trade and clothing stores. Last but not least, the worst atrocities are hidden behind the walls of the factory farms and slaughterhouses.'

Please join us in supporting the cause of animal rights.

I would love your contributions of experiences, struggles, successes with cutting down on animal products, soapbox, recipes, nutritional tips, anything at all related to reducing the suffering of animals at our hands.

I should perhaps also mention that a major focus of my work, both writing and courses, is re-visioning our relationship to the rest of the natural world through hands-on experience of reconnection outdoors:


  1. Hi Roselle. Isn't it illegal (apart from the fact that they're illegally hunting!) for them to be on your field at all?
    And may I wish you a happy New Year - let's hope it brings happier things than 2016 (trying to be positive here :-)

    1. Hello Angie – YES! Absolutely yes! I discovered in myself a rage, a huge voice, and an enormous amount of energy to shout at the (invisible) hunstmen as I legged it up to the very top of the extremely-steep field; but you can't do a bloody thing unless you photograph the hounds actually ripping an animal to ribbons – which I didn't.

      I felt there was little point in dialling 999!

      And yes, thank you and to you too. So glad Rosie's brighter. x

    2. ... or damaging your property, which they didn't...


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