Claxton, Field Notes from a Small Planet
In a single twelve-month cycle of daily writings Mark Cocker explores his relationship to the East Anglian landscape, to nature and to all the living things around him. The separate entries are characterised by close observation, depth of experience, and a profound awareness of seasonal change, both within in each distinct year and, more alarmingly, over the longer period, as a result of the changing climate. The writing is concise, magical, inspiring. Cocker describes all the wildlife in the village - not just birds, but plants, trees, mammals, hoverflies, moths, butterflies, bush crickets, grasshoppers, ants and bumblebees. The book explores how these other species are as essential to our sense of genuine well-being and to our feelings of rootedness as any other kind of fellowship. A celebration of the wonder that lies in our everyday experience, Cocker's book emphasises how Claxton is as much a state of mind as it is a place. Above all else, it is a manifesto for the central importance of the local in all human activity.