A Right to Belong? The Circling Sky in conversation - Jan 2023
Our January book 'The Circling Sky' was the ideal spark for a conversation about nature and our right to belong, particularly with the protests on Dartmoor fresh in the headlines.
The author, Neil Ansell, had set the tone by naming his book after a line from romantic poet John Clare grieving for the enclosure of common land in the 1800s.His distinctive voice was joined in discussion by Nadia Shaikh, land rights lead with the Right to Roam movement.
Neil and Nadia shared how nature helps them find a sense of belonging, from the spreading Oak tree and the Blackbird's song to the lowly but lovely lichen.
In a debate that reflected the upswelling need to reconnect with ourselves and nature, we repeatedly returned to the way culture either welcome us in or pushes us away.
We pondered the lessons of the most excluded, whether those without the confidence to wild camp in the UK, the experience of the Black and People of Colour community or Gypsies forced out of the New Forest, as documented in the book.
And we treasured a softer and slower way of appreciating the great outdoors, less concerned with conquering, more interested in simply being. Loitering in the best possible way.
An absolute joy of a conversation which captures the mood of the moment.
Reconnecting with ourselves and nature through reading, wandering and reflecting is what we do every month at www.adventurousink.co.uk