At the end of the darkly comic classic sci-fi novel “A Canticle for Liebowitz” there’s a scene where a shark, swimming close to shore, experiences the effects of a horrifying nuclear apocalypse taking place in the airy world above. Out there beyond the water, a human civilization is re-destroying itself after haplessly rediscovering and reinventing the nuclear weapons that annihilated the previous society. The shark shakes off the heat of the radiation and heads to deeper water, where it feels confident that the effects of whatever is happening in the incomprehensible land above the surface will not penetrate.
Sharks have been around for hundreds of millions of years, in an incredible profusion of forms. They have survived several of the most devastating mass extinction events on the planet, and they will survive us. There’s a lot that we could learn from them, not least about surviving the worst of ourselves.
This is a signed and numbered first edition, hand-printed by me on 80lb French Speckletone paper.