The Company of Birds: Jon Day, Tim Dee, Zakiya McKenzie & Paul Theroux

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This event is part of our Subject/Object: The Birds festival. Buy a festival ticket for whole series here.

‘No one knows except the parent, or pet-owner, what a marvel the creature is, in repose, and that when you’re alone you are nearly always at peace – such intelligence and serenity and mutual understanding the visitor never sees. I often sat with five silent geese as though I was one of the flock; they took little interest in me, or in one another, and were patient and calm.’ – Paul Theroux, writing in the LRB in 2019

The eerie first weeks of lockdown life were defined, for many, by birds: hearing their song undisturbed by road noise for the first time; watching them flourish from the windows we sat by for weeks, then months, then a whole year.

This conversation is presented in partnership with The Willowherb Review, which published Zakiya McKenzie’s account of taking note of the birds around her for the first time. She’ll be joined by three enthusiasts for the company of birds: Jon Day, who races pigeons; lifelong birder Tim Dee; and, calling in from Hawaii, Paul Theroux.

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