Poem: "A Tornado of Thought"

Mar. 25th, 2017 01:33 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is spillover from the March 7, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] sweet_sparrow. It also fills the "creative solutions to limits" square in my 3-1-17 card for the Disability Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Calliope thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem includes some touchy topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It has emotional upheavals, Vagary's continued stress over Calliope not wanting to do things with him, Calliope's continued stress over his closeness, tornado formation, interrupted therapy session, which triggers Vagary's abandonment issues, unexpected changes in superpowers, Calliope looming over Vagary, emotional suppression during an emergency, an emergency dispatcher doing a shitty job, negotiating with supervillains, stormchasing, exhaustion, crashing with friends at a weather station, and other challenges. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

Read more... )

Humpback Whales Organizing

Mar. 25th, 2017 01:29 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
 [personal profile] siliconshaman tipped me to this report about humpback whales forming superpods.  He's already working on a story about it.  :D

I figure, in Terramagne, they're either discussing "Should we all move to the Maldives?" or "That really romantic bay in Japan has stopped murdering everyone who goes there.  Who wants to go on a mating trip?"

Friday Yardening

Mar. 24th, 2017 06:30 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today I planted three Here Lies Butch daylilies beside the patio where the herb gardens are, and mulched around them.

Weather is warm but very blustery.

There are still two white eggs in the mourning dove nest by the kitchen window.

The barrel garden has a purple hyacinth budding beneath it.  The first of the purple grape hyacinths have opened near the patio.  Daffodils are budding in the inner ring around the maple tree, and a purple crocus is blooming there.  I saw the first blue-and-white violet blooming today. 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
The newsletter from Trails for Illinois encourages forwarding. So here is some nature and pathfinding news from my area.

Read more... )

Poem: "A Dangerous Thing with Style"

Mar. 24th, 2017 02:49 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem came out of the March 7, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] curiosity. It also fills the "money" square in my 12-1-16 card for the iPod Shuffle Music Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Cuoio & Chiara thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )

The Creation of Water

Mar. 24th, 2017 01:30 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
New studies indicate that Earth may make its own water deep below the surface.  Just in case Gaia wasn't awesome enough already.

As a Pagan scholar, this makes me think about goddesses who created life by themselves, without assistance from a god. Parthenogenetic life formation relates closely to a shift from celestial water to cthonic water.  Alternatively, one might argue that either underworld gods are more life-oriented than formerly thought, or we should really be looking for cthonic goddesses.  On the third hoof, this raises interesting points regarding those underworld deities who are hermaphroditic. This could make for some fascinating ritual inspiration.

Discuss. 

Milkweed and Monarchs

Mar. 24th, 2017 01:17 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Someone finally got around to fielding a study which indicates that milkweed is necessary but not sufficient for monarch butterfly survival.   Other factors contribute to their steep decline.  Sure, you can grow milkweed, that's a great thing to do.  But don't think it will "save the butterflies."  It just slows the loss a little.  Other factors lie outside what humans are willing to change, such as pesticides; or able to change, such as climate change.  Even on a national scale, responses are limited, because monarchs have transnational migration routes.  Serious conservation efforts would require collaboration between America and Mexico, which seems unlikely.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Thanks to a donation from Anthony & Shirley Barrette, "The Whip of His Own Remorse" is now complete.  Read about Stylet's crushing discovery of what his precious berettaflies have been up to.

This unlocks the next poem in the Berettaflies thread, "The Inner Transition," which can be posted as soon as it gets sponsored.  That will feature Stylet approaching Valor's Widow.

Poem: "The Source of Pain"

Mar. 23rd, 2017 10:46 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls and fills the "I'm on Fire" square in my 2-1-17 Love Songs card for the Valentines Bingo fest. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Officer Pink thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

WARNING: This poem contains intense material that many readers may find disturbing. It also contains a hefty serving of poetic justice. Highlight to read the more detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. There is mad science, Carl Bernhardt is always a warning, graphic description of medical torture and experimentation on sapient people, centaurs produced by mad science, a distorted response that could be learned helplessness or Stockholm syndrome, references to sapient trafficking and sexual exploitation, graphic description of injuries, messy medical details, unethical employees, and other challenges. If these are touchy topics for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before deciding whether this is something you want to read. It does advance the plot a bit, but a lot of the general trajectory is already established, so it's only a minor gap if you choose to skip this one.

Read more... )

Poem: "As a Model for Others"

Mar. 23rd, 2017 12:27 pm
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem came out of the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by [personal profile] technoshaman. It also fills the "Rosa Parks Day -- December 1" square in my 7-1-15 card for the Winter Fest in July Bingo. This poem belongs to the Schrodinger's Heroes project.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is spillover from the January 6, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] janetmiles and [personal profile] technoshaman. It also fills the "first library card" square in my 12-30-14 card for the Rites of Passage Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Schrodinger's Heroes project.

Read more... )

Poem: "Los Despiertos"

Mar. 22nd, 2017 09:16 pm
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem came out of the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] rowyn. It also fills the "mystery to investigate" square in my 6-10-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Schrodinger's Heroes project.

Read more... )

Good News

Mar. 22nd, 2017 02:19 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Good news includes all the things which make us happy or otherwise feel good. It can be personal or public. We never know when something wonderful will happen, and when it does, most people want to share it with someone. It's disappointing when nobody is there to appreciate it. Happily, blogging allows us to share our joys and pat each other on the back.

What good news have you had recently? Are you anticipating any more?

Tuesday Yardening

Mar. 21st, 2017 04:49 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today I finished planting the last few Asiatic lilies, and mulched around the telephone pole.  Then I planted 3 Siberian irises in the wagonwheel garden. 

Apricots and plum are blooming.  So are some crocus along the driveway.  

There are still two white eggs in the mourning dove nest.

Promoting EFA for Adults

Mar. 21st, 2017 02:11 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Someone asked me about emotional first aid for adults, so here are some ideas about increasing access to that ...

Read more... )

Humanity and Taxes

Mar. 21st, 2017 12:35 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Here's a fascinating case where humans (dolls) and nonhumans (other toys) are taxed differently.  The argument was that, since the X-men are canonically not humans, but rather mutants, their action figures should be taxed as toys.  That worked, although the change was then applied to all  Marvel action figures whether mutant or not.

So let's compare ...

Marvel action figures are now legally considered not human (toys) instead of human (dolls), which makes the tax cheaper.

Another economic factor is dolls vs. action figures.  For years it was all but impossible to market human representations to boys, because they were called dolls.  Then some genius invented the term "action figures" and it became socially acceptable for boys to play with such toys.  Calling them "dolls" could have made them unmarketable.

Personhood is different; that's another category which may be considered both psychological and legal.  Divergences between the two have ghastly results, as both Marvelverse and local history have indicated.  Psychological personhood is sapience -- the presence of an intelligent mind, or soul if you prefer.  It's often thought of as pigeonholes, but in practice, is more of a spectrum, which is very awkward.  Legal personhood is supposed to match, but often does not.  Slaves weren't legal persons, for example, despite being quintessentially the same as free humans.  Marvel has very patchy standards regarding mutants; sometimes they are treated as legal persons, but very often they are not.  The most salient character who consistently objects this is ... Magneto.  Well, that's a bit embarrassing, isn't it?  

From an anthropological perspective, of course, the concept is much broader: a doll is any effigy of a creature, human or something else, played with or otherwise handled in a representational way.  It doesn't have to look  representational, though: if a child picks up a stick and declares it to be a baby, that counts as a doll.

Atlantis, by WH Auden

Mar. 21st, 2017 01:00 pm
randomling: A wombat. (Default)
[personal profile] randomling posting in [community profile] poetry
Being set on the idea
  Of getting to Atlantis,
You have discovered of course
  Only the Ship of Fools is
Making the voyage this year,
As gales of abnormal force
  Are predicted, and that you
  Must therefore be ready to
Behave absurdly enough
  To pass for one of The Boys
At least appearing to love
  Hard liquor, horseplay and noise.

Should storms, as may well happen,
  Drive you to anchor a week
In some old harbour-city
  Of Ionia, then speak
With her witty scholars, men
Who have proved there cannot be
  Such a place as Atlantis:
  Learn their logic, but notice
How their subtlety betrays
  A simple enormous grief;
Thus, they shall teach you the ways
  To doubt that you may believe.

If, later, you run aground
  Among the headlands of Thrace
Where with torches all night long
  A naked barbaric race
Leaps frenziedly to the sound
Of conch and dissonant gong:
  On that stony savage shore
  Strip off your clothes and dance, for
Unless you are capable
  Of forgetting completely
About Atlantis, you will
  Never finish your journey.

Again, should you come to gay
  Carthage or Corinth, take part
In their endless gaiety;
  And if in some bar a tart,
As she strokes your hair, should say
"This is Atlantis, dearie,"
  Listen with attentiveness
  To her life-story: unless
You become acquainted now
  With each refuge that tries to
Counterfeit Atlantis, how
  Will you recognise the true?

Assuming you beach at last
  Near Atlantis, and begin
The terrible trek inland
  Through squalid woods and frozen
Tundras where all are soon lost;
If, forsaken then, you stand,
  Dismissal everywhere
  Stone and snow, silence and air,
Remember the noble dead
  And honour the fate you are
Travelling and tormented,
  Dialectic and bizarre.

Stagger onward rejoicing;
  And even then if, perhaps
Having actually got
  To the last col, you collapse
With all Atlantis gleaming
Below you yet you cannot
  Descend, you should still be proud
  Even to have been allowed
Just to peep at Atlantis
  In a poetic vision:
Give thanks and lie down in peace,
  Having seen your salvation.

All the little household gods
  Have started crying, but say
Good-bye now, and put to sea.
  Farewell, dear friend, farewell: may
Hermes, master of the roads
And the four dwarf Kabiri,
  Protect and serve you always;
  And may the Ancient of Days
Provide for all you must do
  His invisible guidance
Lifting up, friend, up on you
  The light of His countenance.
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
 The half-price sale is up on LiveJournal if you want to shop for Schrodinger's Heroes.

Monday Yardening

Mar. 20th, 2017 06:36 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today we hiked around the yard to make a list of projects for the tree guys to take care of.

*goflopnow* 

Northern Flicker

Mar. 20th, 2017 02:51 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
 Today I saw a northern flicker on the ground under the hopper feeder.  We used to have a lot of these.  They have since been largely replaced by red-bellied woodpeckers.  Read more about the woodpeckers of Illinois.

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