In my essay Holding on to ancient in the Turnip Truck(s) I explore ideas of science and discovery alongside aesthetics and wonder, and perhaps the selfishness that can take hold when I see things that I don’t want to let go.
It’s about an encounter I had with a ctenophore, or comb jelly. I had seen these beautiful, glassy creatures before but only in the open sea, while scuba diving. This was the first ctenophore I’d seen while standing on firm ground, welly-deep in an estuary in Devon, teaching a class of Cambridge University undergraduates about the diversity, evolution and wonders of nature. What unfolded was a mini-adventure that unexpectedly got me thinking about much bigger questions.
My essay is available to read as a PDF online (right click here to download).
It was nominated for a 2017 Pushcart Prize.