Rhys | Those In Glass Houses Shouldn’t Throw Stones.

I hide under the banana leaves, peering out at the desolate world through the punch-holes of monstera. If I’m lucky, this little glass house will continue to keep me alive for another month, maybe two. My gas mask hangs on the peg of the door, waiting for me. We’ve poisoned the air with so many lies and false promises, you can’t even venture outside without asking your lungs to catch fire within an hour.
Ever since the flooding washed away cities on tides and the bees left us with virtually no crops to satiate the hunger, I’m lucky if I see a crow fly past. If I do, that’s a good day. I spot a common dandelion that is now the last of the plants left in Wales, perhaps even Europe. Once a pest, now a treasure.
This glass house is my home now. A modest 30 ft greenhouse that I’ve modified to sustain myself. An old shed inside makes for a sleeping area, and an upcycled rain butt at the back that I can use for quick showers; any waste water that trickles back down to feed the dirt. It’s a closed loop system and nothing is wasted.

With muddy fingernails and lived-in dungarees, I’m a lot like woodlice scurrying mindlessly inside its glass terrarium, isolated, but thriving. Hot sticky air licks every inch of exposed skin as I water the sweet peppers, the tomatoes, and the kale.
They’re all begging for a new home, a real one outside where they can wriggle their dirty feet in deeper soil; just like us. It’s sobering to think that the only greenery, the only healthy slither of nature left within a hundred-mile radius, sits inside this little box, my tiny piece of Borneo.

This is life on Earth.

-but no matter how deep you try to bury your head in the sand, no matter how many times you play the blame game, ignore the mess; the parks, the dead forests, and the dry spine of the Congo all tell a very different story and it’s everyone’s fault.
I’ve noticed that people are just like the weather; unpredictable, chaotic, beautiful, and complex, giving life one moment but just as quickly taking it away.

This is life on Earth.

This is life on Earth.

Rhys (He/His) is a Welsh queer writer. A fan of tea, horror and has a pet axolotl called mayo. He writes stories that address death, social constructs with a strong emphasis on highlighting and championing the LGBTQIA+ community and marginalised groups. His work has featured in Palest Blue and Fifth Wheel Press amongst others.

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