Welcome back to the Reckoning Press podcast. It’s been ages, but we’re ramping up to a lot of cool new stuff in the coming year and beyond, including lots more podcasts, a fundraiser to increase payrates to 10c/word, $50/page for poetry and pay staff better too, t-shirts, pins, who knows what else. Homebrew recipes. Foraging instructions. Bespoke lectures about culling invasive species. We’re flush with ideas, as we should be, but we’re always looking for more. Drop us a line if you’ve got any?
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Thank you very much for listening.
Joey Ayoub, the swift-talking and firily intellectual host of the excellently named political SF podcast The Fire These Times, asked me if I would record this essay for him. He’s devoted quite a bit of time on the podcast to the theory and efficacy of solarpunk, and this is great and necessary work–as you may know I am extremely enthusiastic about criticism of solarpunk–I feel like the more critical thinking we devote to the direction we’re all taking in imagining a livable, equitable, practicable future, the better chance we have of pulling it off.
I had not until this moment thought of this essay, “On Having a Kid in the Climate Apocalypse”, as part of solarpunk. I wrote it as the editorial for Reckoning 2 back in 2017, when I was still the editor and not merely the publisher of Reckoning, but even then, I’d been thinking of Reckoning as a counterpoint to solarpunk. A journal of creative writing about environmental justice. A practical, constructive approach to imagining the future, a repudiation of climate denialism, fatalism, ecofascism, an acknowledgement of and focus on the feelings all this evokes for us now, in the present. That’s what this essay is. And I dearly hope that solarpunk has adapted and will continue to adapt to encompass all that. Because we need a big tent. A tent big enough to hold the world?
My kid is almost five now. Hopefully that means I’ve got some distance from the feelings that drove me to write this, but I should warn you that every other time I have attempted to read this aloud has involved tears.