kaberett: photograph of the Moon taken from the northern hemisphere by GH Revera (moon)
Alex ([personal profile] kaberett) wrote in [community profile] poetry2014-09-19 12:18 pm

from Sublimation | Anne Michaels

Once you called at midnight
to talk about Hindemith,
to tell me how his overtones connect each bar,
invisible thread, sounds we can't hear.
These harmonics guide us through the music, resolve
the twelve tones like mist in a valley,
the reflection of sky in water,
the illusion that what's unnamed remains unformed.
Our voices connected by black wire,
words carried on waves.

We are the strain and stress of a line,
the poem's tension singing in each black wire
of words, and between the first line and the last.
We are the angle of light that burns water,
the point of intersection that creates perspective.

You have lived Brecht's parable of the Chalk Circle.
When I was caught in the middle, you let go
so I wouldn't be torn to pieces.
Your actions have taught me what it is to love -
that it's holding back, as well as holding.

For the first time I'm going
where you can't join me. I know that home
is the one place you won't come.
But you of all people must understand -
the need to hear my language in every mouth.
I can't think in America.

I've never let myself describe you
and now there's no time left
your meaning spills out of me
like the essence of an atom cracking
on the edge of speed's bowl,
liquid in its longing to become part of something else,

Flesh moves to become spirit.
You were the only one to understand my conversion.
Many people have asked me about God;
my proof is manifestation,
that God can be called
'getting over fear'.

I wanted badly that truth be a single thing;
now I know it won't be measured.

It wasn't Heisenberg or Hindemith, but you
who convinced me
that nothing can be unravelled to its core,
that truth is a field, a cage, a cloud of sound.
How else to reconcile the faces of those running away
with the faces of those turning away,
with the faces of those in uniform - that hair-shirt
that says more about a man than his eyes
because you can't tell the parts of his face
that are his.
How else to encompass both that crying and those
orders; the sound of my own voice
begging, and my voice telling jokes to the man
without shoes beside me on a train;
how else to encompass the moon's chilling scream
as it calls out in its bad sleep above the earth
and your voice on the phone,
waking me in Paris, Los Angeles, New York.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-19 03:22 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-19 12:01 am

Story: "Up the Water Spout" Part 10

This story belongs to the series Love Is For Children which includes "Love Is for Children," "Hairpins," "Blended," "Am I Not," "Eggshells," "Dolls and Guys,""Saudades," "Querencia," "Turnabout Is Fair Play," "Touching Moments," "Splash," "Coming Around," "Birthday Girl," "No Winter Lasts Forever," "Hide and Seek," "Kernel Error," "Happy Hour," "Green Eggs and Hulk,""kintsukuroi," and "Little and Broken, but Still Good."

Fandom: The Avengers
Characters: Natasha Romanova, Phil Coulson, Clint Barton, Betty Ross, Bucky Barnes.
Medium: Fiction
Warnings: Mention of human trafficking and nonconsensual drug use. Slightly offstage sexual violence. Dubcon/Noncon.
Summary: Sometimes the Black Widow needs to hunt, and sometimes she needs help settling her personality afterwards. Uncle Phil arranges an extra ageplay session.
Notes: Hurt/comfort. Family. Fluff and angst. BAMF!Black Widow. Black Widow is creepy. Spiders. Coping skills. Asking for help and getting it. Hope. Nonsexual ageplay. Caregiving. Competence. Girl stuff. Toys and games. Gentleness. Trust. #coulsonlives

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9.

Read more... )
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ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-18 11:43 pm

The First Law

 ... has some obvious flaws.  Some of these are things that Asimov himself explored in stories.  The matter has become more urgent these days with people deploying drones that can kill human beings.
ysabetwordsmith: Paranormal detective Brenda in a wheelchair (PIE)
ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-18 10:45 pm
kaberett: curled decorative end of curtain rail casts a heart-shaped shadow on a wall (heartfruit)
Alex ([personal profile] kaberett) wrote in [community profile] poetry2014-09-19 02:29 am

Prayer | Carol Ann Duffy

Some days, although we cannot pray, a prayer
utters itself. So, a woman will lift
her head from the sieve of her hands and stare
at the minims sung by a tree, a sudden gift.

Some nights, although we are faithless, the truth
enters our hearts, that small familiar pain;
then a man will stand stock-still, hearing his youth
in the distant Latin chanting of a train.

Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scales
console the lodger looking out across
a Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone calls
a child's name as though they named their loss.

Darkness outside. Inside, the radio's prayer -
Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre.
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badgerbag ([personal profile] badgerbag) wrote2014-09-18 03:29 pm

Return of neurontin

Took a slightly old gabapentin last night out of total desperation. It went ok. It did its nerve pain relief thing. A relief and yet then i was twitchy and weepy feeling and did not like the side effects. Which thankfully just turned into falling alseep and staying asleep instead of waking up in pain a lot of times. Yay? I still felt in less pain in the morning too. Half a tramadol + tylenol + some coffee (bad idea for stomach, but so helpful) NOw I am back home from the Mountain View office on the couch and still able to work but the pain is very distracting and I am close to the edge of Not Able to Work. I realize this means I need to cool my jets completely for a bit. But I want to go to back to school night. One more thing tonight and then I will cool it for days and days I swear to god. Too much pain. I am making an appointment to renew my Medical Use card and another with my regular doctor to talk about help for worsening ankle(s) and general pain control for my upcoming trip in October. I don't see how I could get through it without serious pain meds at least for night time. I am at the point where I will go beg my doctor for pain drugs, a thing I very much do not like to do. Will work for oxycontin. OK. I find these status updates helpful to look back on someetimes when I forget (near instantly once I bounce out of it) that I just recently had a bout of difficult impairment/pain/whatever. Goal: intervene and stop myself before I hit some sort of rock bottom.

I really don't want to go on nerve pain/ssris long term, it was pretty horrible for me even if it worked for pain. Maybe would consider doing it for a horrible month or two though. Effexor sounds like the pits but it is what the pain clinic recommended i think. Its side effects sound more horrible than cymbalta, which was intolerable.... :(

OR... maybe this leg pain is temporary from the injection and will feel better in a few days. fingers crossed?!
ysabetwordsmith: Paranormal detective Brenda in a wheelchair (PIE)
ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-18 04:26 pm

"Pitfalls" is open for microfunding

Thanks to a donation from [personal profile] janetmiles, you can read the first 26 verses of "Pitfalls."  Darrel and Brenda get ambushed by drugrunners and have to make their way back to civilization.

Microfunded poetry releases new material in pieces as each verse gets funded.  At $.50 per line, this is a great way get new poetry if you're on a tight budget.
cereta: Barbara Gordon, facepalming (babsoy)
Lucy ([personal profile] cereta) wrote in [community profile] agonyaunt2014-09-18 03:29 pm
Entry tags:

Dear Abby: Explain women to me

DEAR ABBY: I'm a 27-year-old male, and I have no clue how to read women's subtle interest cues, if they ever display any. I'd like to think they have, given that I put in at least two days a week at the gym working with weights.

Since you are a woman, could you please be so kind as to give this man a clue what to look for? It's driving me nuts! -- AVAILABLE IN ILLINOIS

DEAR AVAILABLE: The most obvious clues that a woman finds you attractive are eye contact and a smile. That's your opening to make conversation. The rest is up to you!
rachelmanija: (Books: old)
rachelmanija ([personal profile] rachelmanija) wrote2014-09-18 09:17 am

Two mysteries: Lanyon, Francis

A Dangerous Thing, by Josh Lanyon.

Los Angeles mystery writer Adrien English goes to a lonely cabin in the woods to relax and get over his frustrating non-relationship with hot but closeted cop Jake Riordan. (This is the second book in a series, and I didn’t read the first, but presumably that’s the one where they met.) Since this is a mystery, Adrien immediately finds a body, which proceeds to mysteriously vanish. The locals suspect him, so it’s Jake to the rescue! A playful mystery-romance, with lots of banter, sexual tension, and hurt-comfort.

A Dangerous Thing (The Adrien English Mysteries Book 2)

Knockdown, by Dick Francis.

Jonah, a bloodstock agent (horse dealer, basically) discovers unethical practices in the trade; despite increasing levels of menace and violence, he refuses to go along with it, putting himself at higher and higher risk. Meanwhile, his alcoholic brother still refuses to go to AA. But on the bright side, Jonah meets a beautiful air-traffic controller…

This typical Francis set-up goes in some unexpected directions. It’s the darkest of his books that I’ve read. They can deal with some very serious subjects, like grief and depression, but are not grim. The protagonists are put through the wringer, and good people and horses may die. But villains don’t prosper and heroes come through battered but wiser, with a better grip on their own issues and often with a budding romance with some interesting, independent woman.

This is the only Francis book I recall which does not have a happy or at least hopeful ending.

Read more... )

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ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-18 03:56 am

PTSD is like ...

 ... piloting a BattleMech.  This is a brilliant metaphor that will make sense to many gamers.  Remember that once the systems have overheated, it takes time  to cool down to a functional level again.  This is useful if you or someone you know has PTSD or any related condition.
ysabetwordsmith: Paranormal detective Brenda in a wheelchair (PIE)
ysabetwordsmith ([personal profile] ysabetwordsmith) wrote2014-09-18 12:58 am

Poem: "Boundary Lines"

This is the second freebie from the bonus fishbowl, courtesy of new prompters [personal profile] jazzyjj and Deb1789 and new donor Debra Ames.  It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] lynnoconnacht.  It also fills the "courtship rituals" square in my 6-11-14 card for the [community profile] fanbingo fest.  This poem belongs to the series P.I.E.

"Boundary Lines"

Darrel had made it quite clear
that he didn't want Brenda
to meet his parents, but
they ran into each other
one day at the police station.

With a sigh, Darrel gave in
to the inevitable and made introductions.

Within minutes, Brenda silently admitted
that Darrel had been right all along.

Mrs. Finn simpered and fluttered,
leaning on the arm of Brenda's wheelchair
and occasionally groping for handles that weren't there.

Mr. Finn simply pretended that she did not exist.

It was always a challenge to keep people
from manhandling her hardware
in crowded places, but it was
all the more annoying when they did it
without even that excuse.

Rick was just as bad;
Brenda suspected that
being a construction boss
made him interested in
how things were made.

He had a hard time 
keeping his hands off
her spokes and nuts,
and couldn't keep his
mouth shut if you taped it.

Nate, on the other hand,
tended to drop things in her lap
without looking to make sure
they landed securely, and he
wouldn't sit down to speak with her
but preferred to remain standing.

It was little comfort that he used
the same silly dominance tricks
with everyone else, and it made Brenda
wonder if he was compensating for something.

She usually had to work
at maintaining her boundary lines,
to keep a little bubble of space around herself,
and then again to make people notice her.

She used her hands and arms
in expansive gestures, and
sometimes tapped a foot
even though it startled people.

With Darrel, though, Brenda
didn't have to do any of that.
He flowed around her like wind,
like water, neither hesitating
nor presuming to touch.

Brenda liked that about him,
the way he fit himself into her life
and invited her into his,

their boundaries slowly but surely
beginning to blend together.

* * *


The human brain can incorporate a wheelchair into its self-image, so it counts as part of someone's personal space.  Understand the etiquette for wheelchair users and other people with disabilities.

Body language is complicated by such things as gender and social rank.  There are ways to use expansive body language to your advantage. 

Personal boundaries include several types.  Know how to establish and adjust your boundaries to keep people from bothering you.

Close relationships rely on letting your guard down, so you need to know when and how to lower your barriers.  There are always ways of building trust in a relationship.

starlady: Mako's face in the jaeger, in profile (mako mori is awesome)
Electra ([personal profile] starlady) wrote2014-09-17 08:44 pm

Reading I'm not traveling on a Wednesday for once

Wednesday is generally when you get the cheapest and emptiest flights (relatively speaking) and it's become my go-to travel day for that reason. But for once I am in California again, so it's time to talk about books.

Books Read
Kate Elliott, Shadow Gate (2008) and Traitor's Gate (2009) - Further comments forthcoming, but suffice it to say, I loved the whole Crossroads trilogy, and I highly recommend them to everyone looking to read more epic fantasy that pays due attention to female characters and to women's experiences. Also: GIANT JUSTICE EAGLES IJS

Helen Oyeyemi, Mr. Fox (2011) - I really enjoyed the other Oyeyemi book I read, White Is for Witching; I liked this one too, though (perhaps unsurprisingly since it's riffing on "Bluebeard") the themes of violence against women, against female characters, etc, felt a bit too close to reality. But in the end I really enjoyed the interplay between Daphne Fox, the titular Mr. Fox's wife, and Mary Foxe, his fourth wall-breaking muse; he doesn't deserve either of them, but that's how it goes. Oyeyemi is a wizard of prose, and I can't recommend her books enough.

Holly Black, The Coldest Girl in Coldtown (2013) - I was talking to a friend of mine who bought and started reading this book the same time I did but stopped a bit of the way in because of vampire fatigue. Well, I finished it on the BART this evening and I am here to tell you, there's no question of vampire fatigue when someone reinvents the form as well as Black does here--I'd forgotten how a well-written feeding scene can be better than any sex scene outside of top-shelf fanfic, and more interesting besides. The main character's tenacity and general clear-headedness are refreshing, and the worldbuilding is very interesting. I really enjoyed it.

Currently Reading
Brit Mandelo, We Wuz Pushed - This is an Aqueduct Conversations piece about Joanna Russ. I'm quite liking it so far. It was Mandelo's master's thesis and it's really good.

Wendy Walker, Knots (2006) - Another Aqueduct Conversations book. I love Walker's prose. I need to try to get this book for my own; I'm borrowing it from a friend.

The rakugo manga - yes, I know

Book-Shaped Acquisitions Space
Andrea K. Höst's book Stray is free on amazon.com. Höst was recommended to me quite enthusiastically by a fellow Michelle West fan at Worldcon, and I'd been planning to buy some of her books in paper when I go to Australia next month. I expect interesting things!

Reading Next
These things are very difficult to predict. We'll see!
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rushthatspeaks ([personal profile] rushthatspeaks) wrote2014-09-17 04:00 pm


Get a flu shot this year, everybody. I thought it was a tad early, and instead I have the flu. You do not want this flu. I have been out of bed for four hours since Sunday, and three of those were a mistake. It also came on quickly-- I was fine late Saturday night, and then over the span of about five hours, not so much. This is up there with H1N1 as worst flu experiences I've had; I keep thinking I'm well enough to get up and do things, and then being hit over the head with a new and terrible symptom, such as worse body aches, or fever spiking. Get a shot. Get one now. Traditionally flu season starts in October, but that is like, what, two weeks away?
ambyr: pebbles arranged in a spiral on sand (nature sculpture by Andy Goldsworthy) (Pebbles)
ambyr ([personal profile] ambyr) wrote in [community profile] access_fandom2014-09-17 02:01 pm
Entry tags:

Asthma and The Mirror Empire

I thought this Whirling Nerdish blog post about the portrayal of disability in Kameron Hurley's latest fantasy novel might be interesting to some people here:


As I write this, my hands are shaking. Not because I'm distressed. Not because I'm tired or hungry or my blood sugar is low. They're shaking because I took my inhaler. I woke up this morning, and for some reason, I couldn't take in a full breath.


Kameron Hurley's The Mirror Empire features a main character that has asthma. I'm only about 100 pages into the book, but so far, this girl is my favorite character. Because she's got a strong spirit, she's brave as fuck, and she gets shit done. But when things get real, when she has to physically exert herself--climbing stairs, fleeing bad guys, etc., she gets wheezy; she gets short of breath.
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badgerbag ([personal profile] badgerbag) wrote2014-09-17 09:25 am

Need pain holiday!

My injection site/bad leg are truly hideous the last few days. I powered through the weekend on tramadols (about 3 per day plus codeine at night, and i had coffee 3 days in a row on vacation) Now down to only painkiller at night and tylenol in day but today I need to kick that up a few notches. I just want to lie on ice packs/heating pads and writhe around. God.

Lots of meetings today. I would like just a little cup of caffeinated tea....
rachelmanija: (Books: old)
rachelmanija ([personal profile] rachelmanija) wrote2014-09-17 08:35 am

Reading Wednesday: Two Free Portal Fantasies I Couldn’t Get Through

1632, by Eric Flint.

A chunk of a modern American town, including the entire local chapter of Mine Workers of America, is mysteriously transported into 1632 Germany. What those people need are red-blooded Americans with lots of guns!

This is kind of hilariously what it is. Apart from Flint being pro-union, it is exactly like every sweaty right-wing fantasy ever, complete with the lovingly described slaughter with lovingly described guns of nameless evil people whom we know are evil because we see them randomly torturing and raping the hapless, helpless villagers. The rape and torture is lovingly described, too. There are also loving descriptions of various engineering projects.

Typical excerpt:

Mike spoke through tight jaws. "I'm not actually a cop, when you get right down to it. And we haven't got time anyway to rummage around in Dan's Cherokee looking for handcuffs." He glared at the scene of rape and torture. "So to hell with reading these guys their rights. We're just going to kill them."

"Sounds good to me," snarled Darryl. "I got no problem with capital punishment. Never did."

"Me neither," growled one of the other miners. Tony Adducci, that was, a beefy man in his early forties. Like many of the miners in the area, Tony was of Italian ancestry, as his complexion and features indicated. "None whatsoever."

Gave up on this. It’s not that I never enjoy this sort of thing. But I have to really be in the mood for it. (Appropriate mood: Snark locked and loaded.)

Free on Baen. Yes. Of course this is a Baen book. There are the obvious exceptions, like Bujold, but Baen has more of a house style than Harlequin.

Stray, by Andrea Host.

An Australian teenager steps through a portal to a strange world, where she survives on her own for a while before being rescued by and taken to another world, where she becomes a lab rat for a bunch of psychic ninjas who fight alien monsters!

This sounds completely up my alley. However, this is my third try at reading it, and I have never gotten farther than 30% in, and I had to force myself to get even that far. It’s written in the form of a diary, which means there’s no dialogue and it’s entirely tell-not-show. I’ve read books like that which I’ve really enjoyed (Jo Walton is extremely good at that type of narrative), but this one never caught my interest. It’s certainly very ambitious— for instance, Cassandra does not speak the alien language, nor does she instantly learn it— but I found it dry and uninvolving.

Sorry to all who recced it so enthusiastically! I will try something else by Host, but I’m giving up on this one. That being said, everyone but me seems to love it, and it’s free on Amazon, so give it a shot.

Stray (Touchstone Book 1)
kaberett: a watercolour painting of an oak leaf floating on calm water (leaf-on-water)
Alex ([personal profile] kaberett) wrote in [community profile] poetry2014-09-17 12:02 pm

Machines | Michael Donaghy

Dearest, note how these two are alike:
This harpsicord pavane by Purcell
And the racer’s twelve-speed bike.

The machinery of grace is always simple.
This chrome trapezoid, one wheel connected
To another of concentric gears,
Which Ptolemy dreamt of and Schwinn perfected,
Is gone. The cyclist, not the cycle, steers.
And in the playing, Purcell’s chords are played away.

So this talk, or touch if I were there,
Should work its effortless gadgetry of love,
Like Dante’s heaven, and melt into the air.

If it doesn’t, of course, I’ve fallen. So much is chance,
So much agility, desire, and feverish care,
As bicyclists and harpsicordists prove

Who only by moving can balance,
Only by balancing move.