The silent protest

Jul. 28th, 2017 07:28 am
asakiyume: (far horizon)
[personal profile] asakiyume
If it wasn't for today's Google doodle, I wouldn't have learned about the Silent Protest of 1917 or the massacre of East St. Louis. It's a deeply evil streak in humanity that gets people to delight in the slaughter of the defenseless. I'm full of deep gratitude and admiration for the people, like Ida B. Wells and James Weldon Johnson, who have the courage to fight against that evil. (After seeing the Google doodle, I read this article on the Silent Protest.)

Scheduled update

Jul. 27th, 2017 01:21 pm
satyapriya: Macchu Picchu 2009 (Default)
[personal profile] satyapriya
SnakyPoet alerted me to the way my chosen blog skin was playing out for visitors. I've hopefully fixed that now.

I'm sitting in the sun, which is coming in through my bedroom windows. I'm cross-legged on the floor, squinting at the screen against the sunlight, with Penny right in front of my legs. She's more cranky these days, don't know why. Hisses all the time, has started biting visitors when they pet her. I'm going to apply coconut oil to her paws again, and when she licks it off, she will eat it, and hopefully, it might affect her skin. I think she has terribly ichy skin, and it's annoying her.

An anxiety day for me today. Far too much in the world recently. Body had had enough by last night, mind has had enough today. I've done a bit of house tidying, not that you can tell, and I've been on the couch late morning, reading. Reading will continue after this blog update.

Not much else to report. Still very down, although I put a jolly good face on it. Still anxious, so nothing new there. Still got fibro, although a friend has signed me up to a 'detox through cabbage and kale ferments, kill the candida, kill the worms, be prepared to piss and poop and vomit, as this is good' group, and the admins say that if you cease naming your diseases, they won't exist. So I don't have fibro. I have SparklingHealth. Which I am treating with Nimbin oil, chinese herbs, rest, and gentle exercise. Not to mention the occasional Voltaren.
I will not be treating my SparklingHealth with cabbage and kale ferments, which makes one sick as a dog.

Good gods, there's an ant crawling around my windowsill. There must be warmer weather on the way if the ant scouts are out and about. I would have thought they'd still be below ground. Then again, only another six weeks or so, and I can start organising my back yard beehive. The bees will be ready by then, I think.

I live for the warmer weather, for not so many clothes, and because I'm too chicken to inflict enough pain and discomfort on myself, and others, to end it.

between the sunlight and the air

Jul. 26th, 2017 10:09 pm
asakiyume: (shaft of light)
[personal profile] asakiyume
Because yesterday and last night were unseasonably cold but the air was warmer this morning, there was mist everywhere when I went out.

Everywhere was gauzy.

misty trees

sun through mist

Up the street, down the street--ethereal

looking up the road

looking down the road

It seems that otherworldly dancers passed through, too, leaving behind their handkerchiefs, as they often do, on lawns, beside paths, and in the woods:

fairy handkerchiefs

fairy handkerchief fairy handkerchiefs


Lush and soaking wet

Jul. 26th, 2017 10:21 am
mount_oregano: Let me see (Default)
[personal profile] mount_oregano

I spent 17 years living in Madrid, Spain, which was long enough to forget what summers in America’s Midwest are like. This is my first full summer in Chicago, and I grew up in Milwaukee, with very similar weather, so none of this should be a surprise. But it is. The contrast is just too great.

When I first arrived back a year ago, I’d forgotten how lush and green things are in this part of the United States. And not just green – lots of flowers, too. There’s a reason for that. I’d forgotten how much it rains, often in the form of thunderstorms.

Chicago’s average rainfall in July is 3.7 inches. Madrid’s average for July is 0.4 inches. In other words, on average in July, Chicago gets nine times the rain of Madrid.

The July average is 3.7 inches, but so far this month, my corner of Chicago has received 4.94 inches, with more rain forecast for tomorrow morning. August tends to be an even wetter month with an average of 4.9 inches of rain. Areas northwest of me in Illinois are already suffering from record floods.

It’s hot, it’s wet, and as a consequence, it’s buggy here. But that’s not all bad. I can watch moisture-loving fireflies sparkling in my back yard – on evenings when it isn’t raining.

— Sue Burke

buttonbush

Jul. 23rd, 2017 09:31 am
asakiyume: (glowing grass)
[personal profile] asakiyume
The Ashley reservoir is now one of my go-to places to take people when they visit. I took my old college friend and her husband there, and learned that the water-loving plant that I had thought looked very mangrove-y is buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis), which grows up and down the Atlantic coast and as far inland as the Mississippi, and is indeed a species in the mangrove biome!

Buttonbush

button bush (Cephalanthus occidentalis)

Yesterday I took [personal profile] osprey_archer there (and we read aloud to each other--so much fun), and lo and behold, the buttonbush was in bloom! I didn't have a camera, so she obliged me with a photo:

Buttonbush in flower, by [personal profile] osprey_archer



The flowers look like how pollen looks under a scanning electron microscope:

Buttonbush flowers....

buttonbush flowers

Pollen, much magnified:



(source)

Or, um... like an influenza virus...



(source)

It smells nice, though, and bees and butterflies love it. AS DO I.


asakiyume: (feathers on the line)
[personal profile] asakiyume
Did you ever play the authors card game? We had this when I was a kid: 13 authors--a pretty random assortment of 19th-century English and American writers, all men with the exception of Louisa May Alcott--with four works for each author. You play it like you play Go Fish, with the goal being to get as many completed sets of authors' works as possible. Wakanomori and I enjoyed playing it the other day, but I thought it would be fun to make up a set of YA fantasy works. [personal profile] osprey_archer is visiting, and we created a set. It's a fairly random assortment, only two male authors (CS Lewis and Lloyd Alexander), and two authors I follow here one LJ/DW (that would be [personal profile] sartorias and [profile] pamaladean). The authors had to have four works or series of works; we tried not to list individual works in a series, and we decided all the works should be fiction.

The original Authors game features portraits of the authors...



But we are not good at portraiture, so we used symbols for each author. [personal profile] sartorias, you're a fan! [personal profile] pameladean, you're a sprig of rosemary!

(click through to embiggen)
DSCN6425

DSCN6426

DSCN6427

DSCN6428

DSCN6429

Just now [profile] wakanomori, [personal profile] osprey_archer, and I played it. Very satisfying!
ankh_hpl: (Default)
[personal profile] ankh_hpl
the lost art
of looking up
moon dust footprints


-- Ann K. Schwader

http://tinyurl.com/ybg4y63m

Garbage poetry

Jul. 19th, 2017 10:39 am
mount_oregano: Let me see (Default)
[personal profile] mount_oregano

“Garbage” is the theme of the current issue of Eye to the Telescope, a quarterly online journal of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association. I’m a member, and as such, I’m pleased to invite you to enjoy the July 2017 issue.

It offers 19 speculative poems dealing with such refuse as socks, landfills, trashy novels, and star dust.

Read it here:
http://eyetothetelescope.com/archives/025issue.html

— Sue Burke

Blog update

Jul. 19th, 2017 06:34 pm
satyapriya: Macchu Picchu 2009 (Default)
[personal profile] satyapriya
I have a blog update scheduled for tomorrow.
I want tomorrow to be full of nothing.
So I'm updating now.
I'm sad, and have been for most of this year.
I hide it well.
Everyone believes my smile.
There. I updated.
As if anyone gives a fuck.

witness bears

Jul. 18th, 2017 07:48 pm
asakiyume: (nevermore)
[personal profile] asakiyume
Out of the corner of my ear I was listening to a Cornell West lecture from the 1990s, and in it he said "witness bearers," but I heard "witness bears," and I know bare-bear-bear wordplay is low-hanging fruit, but here is a witness bear.

witness bear

In other news, Wakanomori and I are nearly done watching Person of Interest. I *really* have liked this show. Not every single everything--I'm not into gangster plotlines--but all the characters, intensely, and the care with which the overall story arc was handled, and the AI, free will, ends-means, creator-created stuff, very much so.

My Goodreads review: Livia Lone

Jul. 17th, 2017 04:12 pm
ankh_hpl: (Default)
[personal profile] ankh_hpl
Livia Lone (Livia Lone #1)Livia Lone by Barry Eisler

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


This is a fast-paced, fascinating, but disturbing thriller centered on human trafficking and its fallout. The title character is a survivor turned sex crimes detective -- with a vigilante streak a mile wide. Eisler never lets the reader forget that Livia is both highly competent and seriously damaged, and offers plenty of evidence for both traits.

I found the plot itself a little predictable, though it still kept me reading. And, occasionally, not wanting to. I hadn't expected this one to be an easy or completely pleasant read, and it definitely wasn't. Livia's skills are a wonder (possibly slightly unbelievable, but we are talking thrillers here), and her cause is just, but there are a few scenes I won't be able to un-see for a while.

The Kindle edition includes helpful chapter-by-chapter notes with links to online articles and video. Most of these relate to Livia's martial arts training and weapons, though there are a couple of articles on actual crimes which inspired the fiction. There is also a bibliography (with links) for those wishing to educate themselves further about human trafficking, police investigation techniques, and other topics.

Possibly recommended for thriller fans looking for an informative, intense read.




View all my reviews

Finding My Long Way Back To Poetry

Jul. 17th, 2017 10:11 am
satyapriya: Macchu Picchu 2009 (Default)
[personal profile] satyapriya
http://withrealtoads.blogspot.com.au/

I've not written poetry much at all this year. I've been deep in memoir territory, and I feel dry, used up, a leaf in winter scraping on cold bitumen. So, I toddled over to my favourite poetry inspiration place and I'll try to do something with Brendan's prompt.

Knife through butter
to measure out half a cup
for this new recipe.

A good sliver off the Larsen Ice Shelf
loosing itself into the ocean.

Sugar weighed out into metal bowl,
white and silver.

Snow and ice gleaming,
deep within larimar-blue.

Crumbled almond meal,
the tang of vanilla essence.

Icebergs melting, salt biting deep,
the smell of krill
from a minke's mouth.

Apply heat.

The cake rises.
The land bares itself.
One more palatable than the other.
****

That felt like grinding dry concrete. But it's a start.

Midwinter Blues

Jul. 17th, 2017 09:52 am
satyapriya: Macchu Picchu 2009 (Default)
[personal profile] satyapriya
I lay in bed this morning, and thought: "Oh pooh, I have appointments, and yoga that require me to be in the world, just when I don't want to be."
I had the choice of cancelling everything and staying put in bed, with the justification of 'well, everyone needs rest'. In reality, I feel low, and lethargic, and tired of fighting the cold, all for the sake of 'living a life'.
It's July, so here's the Big Sad, the Big Anxious, and the mid-winter blues. I long to be in Darwin, Mission Beach, Monkey Mia. Anywhere warm, tropical, with lots of sunlight. I want bright green, and white sand, and blue sky and ocean. I want to not be wrapped up to the eye-teeth in layers and layers of clothes until I feel I'm suffocating.
I want all my writing to be done, and not have to go back into it and fix all the dumb-ass mistakes.
Today, I want to be the Four of Swords, someone lying in their tomb.
Yeah, I know it's bad thinking. You know what, I don't have it in me to alter it today.
I'll mope along to yoga, because that's what I do. I'll eat food, because one must, I suppose. I'll read because what else is there? Because these are things that make up my life, and I don't know how to just sit and moulder away to nothing.
I know all the nutrition, and exercise, and change-my-thoughts stuff. I can do all that. No use telling me to 'get out for a walk and have an orange'. I'll likely do both today. They won't change in the inner essence of me that's craving sunlight, and warmth, and....well, preferably the ability to sit and not move, and not think.

The Red Shoes

Jul. 16th, 2017 02:47 pm
asakiyume: (Iowa Girl)
[personal profile] asakiyume
Today in church one of the altar servers was wearing red ballet-slipper-style shoes with sparkles.

red shoes

They were beautiful, and I was thinking, wow, church has come a long way since Hans Christian Andersen's time (different denomination, too, but let's sail by that issue), when the poor protagonist of "The Red Shoes" eventually HAS TO HAVE HER FEET CHOPPED OFF for the sin of indulging in vanity by wearing her red shoes to church. And then, even after she's repented and had her feet cut off, her bloody feet, dancing in the shoes, keep her from entering the church!

I have vivid memories of the illustrations accompanying this story from the version of HCA's fairy tales that we had when I was a kid--particularly the one of Karen, the protagonist, her hair a wild golden tangle, pleading with the executioner to cut off her feet. With much searching (a zillion people have illustrated HCA, including famous people like Edmund Dulac and Arthur Rackham), I found that the edition we had was called Stories from Hans Christian Andersen, illustrated by twin sisters, Anne and Janet Grahame Johnstone. They had an overly pretty, slim, stylized way of drawing people that I was fascinated by. I couldn't find the one illustration online, but I did find the one of her going into church all in white... but with the offending red shoes on. Unfortunately the person who took the photo cut off the feet (LOL), so you can't see the shoes, but you can see the glow from them:


(source)

If you click on the source link, you can get more of a sense of the illustrators' style. They had a great illustration for "The Wild Swans" of the prince who ends up still with one arm a wing, but I thought you might like this fairly hot (in an overly pretty way) picture from Tales of Greeks and Trojans:


(source)


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