March 1st, 2021

Ownership

Our neighbour's fence- the one that encloses his/her chickens- makes a regular clicking noise. You can hear it at quite a distance. I think it must be telling us it's electrified.

Passive- aggressive is the word for it.

Electric fences and barbed wire are among my least favourite things. They belong in a world that's out of joint. I like playing at being the squire, squelching round the fields in my wellington boots, but it's an impersonation, not a studied role and my deeper beliefs and instincts and feelings are communitarian. The Earth is our mother- we come from her and go back to her and the idea that some of us can own bits of her and thereby have license to bawl at our brothers and sisters to "keep orf my land" is grotesque.

I'm happy to be a steward, unhappy to be an owner. And, of course I won't be either for very much longer- because either I'll die or my mother will- and the farm is going to be passed along.
Do I want it sold to some hedge fund manager? It wouldn't be my first choice, or my second.

So I'm putting out feelers- very tentatively- to a trust that owns houses and land and runs them on communitarian principles. Would they be interested in acquiring the farm? Would it fit their portfolio? By tentative feelers I mean I've suggested the idea to a friend who is a friend of the man who is at the trust's heart. And if he's not interested perhaps word will trickle through to someone in similar circumstances who is...