Creatively Conserving Energy

Emergence az
Emergence by Antonia Sara Zenkevitch


can we weave the green

amid grey smoke and ashes

to re-root the tree?

My energy has been stolen from me by forces unseen. I empathize with the Earth, the veins of her waterways plundered. The lungs of her forests cut away. Her past stolen for our fuel and her future uncertain as ours is. I must use my energy wisely, and use hers wisely too.

I still make a few of my toiletries and perfumes when able and would like to do this more to limit plastic bottles and unnecessary chemicals and the fuel used to transport goods and run shops. I’ll be asking for support to safely do big cooks and bakes heating up the cooker once and filling it, to use it to the max for tomorrow’s healthy ready meals. Would love to co-make some pickles, jams, herby oils, kinds of vinegar and sauces too if I can, making dishes easier for others to whip up later. I’m thinking one or two afternoons a month for a full freezer and some gubbins in the cupboard. We could also skill share, swapping someone else’s’ excess homegrown veg or sewing skills for home-made body scrubs and bath melts.

Time herself is melting before us

we live by the whirring of clocks,

place your fingers in mine, love,

we’ll weather all the knocks

as sand slips silent

in gold glimmers

to be spent,




life lives

on the wheel

we must not still

in idle passing,

I’d spend our breath laughing,

turning the spindle to weave,

re-set the clock before we leave,

re-winding enough for those we love.

I don’t have the dexterity to sow but I’ve often dyed old clothes when we’re bored or they’ve become discoloured or faded. I used to organize clothes exchange parties at one point, the first on my 30th. Every few months we each bought 5 or more items in good condition and some nibbles to share. We took turns hosting. I highly recommend it.  It was a revelation finding new outfits and accessories for free while giving away clothes that did not fit or feel right to new loving homes. Instead of judgy shop assistants, we had mutual encouragement. Instead of the exhaustion of running around shop to shop in a tempest or waiting for the sales to fight with strangers over sweaters, we had this.

We relaxed in one place with friends. Instead of choosing the same old safe buys or looking identical to others, we dared to try on new styles and different colours with kind, constructive comments, and ideas from our peers. Instead of spending money, we saved buckets of it, saving resources as we did so. We always kept some back as ‘second chances’ for the next party, broadening the range of available sizes. We did accessories last and prioritized people who didn’t already have a pile of goodies to take home. Last but not least we chose a charity to donate the rest of the lovely stuff to. If I could find accessible living rooms amongst my friends and the energy I might try this again.

in creative twists

each butterfly’s emergence,

first, the chrysalis.


This is part of a Sustainable in the City series. If you like it you might like to check out:

Children’s Uprising

Sustainable Ranting Credentials