The Learned Pig

Art – Thinking – Nature – Writing

Category: Radical Landscapes

  • Noticing the Invisible

    Noticing the Invisible

    In cities, we don’t usually see polluted air in front of our eyes, but its impact may still be felt inside our lungs. According to Open Air Laboratories at Imperial College, “In contrast to the visible smogs that affected cities in the past, much of the air pollution in the UK today is largely invisible…

  • Scrub


    Beyond the chain-link fence of my primary school, across the alleyway into town, was a land of fascination. We called it the ‘waste ground’ and I’d wander there looking for treasures among the broken fireplaces and scuffed concrete. Garden survivors rose from the cracks and dust: snapdragons, evening primrose, mullein. This was suburban south-west London….



    Kimberly Campanello on her series of poems that memorialises those who died at St Mary’s Mother and Baby Home, Ireland. Part of Radical Landscapes.

  • The Land Incanted

    The Land Incanted

    The words “incanted” and “enchanted” share the same etymological root. An incantation is defined as “the use of spells or verbal charms spoken or sung as a part of a ritual of magic” also “a written or recited formula of words designed to produce a particular effect” To walk out into any wilderness; to become…

  • Clouting


    December   It takes two years off their life, if they have lambs when they’re shearlings, if they’re going to live on the fells.   Not much of the thin wintery daylight filters through the half-open door, and the straw on the floor lends a glow to the place. The barn is chilly and has…

  • Last Glacial Maximum

    Last Glacial Maximum

    We often look to the past in order to understand the present. Those in northern Britain who engage in such an activity will eventually encounter an impenetrable wall of ice. In the deep-time cycles of cold and warm, stadial and interstadial, scientists call this most recent freezing episode the ‘Last Glacial Maximum’. It is the…

  • Wild City Manifesto

    Wild City Manifesto

      the wild city is only the past repeating * wildness doesn’t begin or end at the edge of the city * the wild doesn’t shut at 10pm * wild things have their own sequence * bring back the seasons! * our material existence cannot be sustained without wildness * the wild city reverses destiny…

  • Editorial: Radical Landscapes

    Editorial: Radical Landscapes

    Radical Landscapes takes its title from Harriet Tarlo’s seminal collection of British ecopoetries The Ground Aslant: An Anthology of Radical Landscape Poetry (Shearsman, 2011) – a collection that came out in the penultimate year of my PhD devoted to Reading and Writing with a Tree: Practising “Nature Writing” as Enquiry, which was itself a radical,…

  • love poetry: the slug edit

    love poetry: the slug edit

    I offer words of love to water, and to the place where it emerges, streams, out of the earth. One small book (precious), A Little Treasury of Love Lyrics – 1963, 79 pages, Pictorial pale blue dust jacket over red cloth boards, is lain on the moss bank, beside the stream — by the sermon-spilling…

  • The same scene (nightish)

    The same scene (nightish)

        James Sanders is taking part in Radical Landscapes: Innovation in Landscape and Language Art at The Plough Arts Centre, Great Torrington, Devon from 23rd March to 22nd April 2019.   In support of the exhibition, The Learned Pig’s Spring 2019 editorial season is devoted to Radical Landscapes.