Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Poem for Tuesday


For the Shofar Blower
By Janet Zimmern


At this awesome season
pregnant
with all possibility we pray today:

By our choices and deeds,
with Divine Intervention,
Supernal Midwife of Israel
and of All Creation,
attend,
assist us
to birth as yet unknown wonders,
miracles of Life.

With an awesome fear of God,
I place this shofar to my lips.

May the breath
You breathe inside me momentarily,
now return to You
to be renewed and return again
to this world for Life, for Peace

May the birthcries of my shofar blasts
be pleasing to You,
as the words and deeds of Shifra
with fear of You, she
lovingly births Your People:
Freedom
to do Your Will.

Like Puah,
be hutzpadik
in Your advocacy
Encourage us toward Life
even when we ourselves may feel discouraged,
distressed in the midst
of life's hard pangs.

Breathe life into us anew!
While others take us for dead.
Lest we face despair of lost hope,
even we,
may abandon ourselves.

In the name of Shifra, Puah,
Sara Emainu
Hana,
in the name of Rahel Emainu,
let her tears for her children,
be of gladness and joy.

In the name of God that is Birth,
let the joy of becoming, of hearing
sounds from this birthing shofar
overcome and become us all.

God, cleanse us of our sins
like the midwife
who cleanses the newborn infant.

Wrap us in the beautiful garments
of the Soul.
Bathe us in Your Light
so our Divine nature may shine
even as we walk joyously in Your Light -
B'or paneha yehalayhun!

May the breath of my being
blown into this shofar
hearken us
back to the shofar
that is Shifra
and the breath
that is Puah.

Deliver us from the narrows
of, God Forbid, an evil decree,
into the breadth of sound.

Signal in us an expansion.
Together God
may we birth this coming year!

God,
Supernal Midwife,
send me no angel, no seraph, not even
Hayot Hakodesh!

Be Thou my Midwife!
Be Thou my angel!
Be Thou My Self!
Birth me yet again anew,
renewed for this coming year.

--------


'Tis the season. Am trying to find a really good English version of the mourner's kaddish; does anyone know of one, not the one from either version of the Union Prayer Book or anything that uses "Lord" in the translation?

And now a public service: ROTK trailer images! has a lot too in successive entries.

I was trying to do that author meme list in which you're supposed to remove the names of authors you do not have in common with someone and replace those names with authors you do have so that your list contains ten names. I looked at 's list and discovered that I actually have every single author on her list; then I looked at 's and I have all of her authors as well. However, I think Neil Gaiman is the most overrated writer in the planet, and I loathed Jane Austen in grad school (bad bad feminist me!), and I felt like a lemming reading over other people's lists, so here is my mostly-from-scratch list of ten desert island authors who haven't shown up nearly enough for my bias:

Janette Turner Hospital
Nancy Kress
Richard Zimler
Octavia Butler
Jeanne Larsen
Amy Tan
Salman Rushdie
Clysta Kinstler
Roger Zelazny
Richard Bach

I really should have included L'Engle despite her ubiquitousness on my Friends list, as well as C.S. Lewis, since they taught me to read allegory. Go ahead and say something snide about Tan's over-hyped bestsellers and the fact that I like Illusions better than Coraline. Shall I admit how close I came to putting Ayn Rand on the list? And, you know, I might chosen Anne Rice in spite of everything but I will never forgive her for Taltos, not to mention threatening her fans with legal action.

As for the music meme...you can learn all this nonsense about me here, if you're really interested. It's not updated for the past several months but October Project is on there so it's definitely updated since I got this LJ. This is why, although I do a lot of quizzes, I skip a lot of memes.

Monday, September 29, 2003

Poem for Monday and <lj comm


I'm A Fool To Love You
By Cornelius Eady


Some folks will tell you the blues is a woman,
Some type of supernatural creature.
My mother would tell you, if she could,
About her life with my father,
A strange and sometimes cruel gentleman.
She would tell you about the choices
A young black woman faces.
Is falling in with some man
A deal with the devil
In blue terms, the tongue we use
When we don't want nuance
To get in the way,
When we need to talk straight.
My mother chooses my father
After choosing a man
Who was, as we sing it,
Of no account.
This man made my father look good,
That's how bad it was.
He made my father seem like an island
In the middle of a stormy sea,
He made my father look like a rock.
And is the blues the moment you realize
You exist in a stacked deck,
You look in a mirror at your young face,
The face my sister carries,
And you know it's the only leverage
You've got.
Does this create a hurt that whispers
How you going to do?
Is the blues the moment
You shrug your shoulders
And agree, a girl without money
Is nothing, dust
To be pushed around by any old breeze.
Compared to this,
My father seems, briefly,
To be a fire escape.
This is the way the blues works
Its sorry wonders,
Makes trouble look like
A feather bed,
Makes the wrong man's kisses
A healing.

--------


My internet connection is even wonkier than yesterday. I can't stay on AIM for more than about three minutes at a stretch. Sorry, if you want to talk to me; e-mail please!

How in hell can it be after 11, when I have just gotten through my Friends list and have done not a whit of work yet this morning?

: Cost, for the "joy after betrayal" challenge. Kira/Odo, my absolute all-time-favorite canon Trek couple, maybe my favorite couple ever on television. Though I do still have a soft spot for smutty Winn/Dukat. I don't have to make a "Het: Feel the Power" icon or anything dorky like that, do I, considering that I've always written het and slash in roughly equal measure? Wow, my fic tastes reflect my real-life tastes. Fancy that.


Post-Isabel Potomac River

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Poem for Sunday


Spell of Creation
By Kathleen Raine


Within the flower there lies a seed,
Within the seed there springs a tree,
Within the tree there spreads a wood.

In the wood there burns a fire,
And in the fire there melts a stone,
Within the stone a ring of iron.

Within the ring there lies an O
Within the O there looks an eye,
In the eye there swims a sea,

And in the sea reflected sky,
And in the sky there shines the sun,
Within the sun a bird of gold.

Within the bird there beats a heart,
And from the heart there flows a song,
And in the song there sings a word.

In the word there speaks a world,
A word of joy, a world of grief,
From joy and grief there springs my love.

Oh love, my love, there springs a world,
And on the world there shines a sun
And in the sun there burns a fire,

Within the fire consumes my heart
And in my heart there beats a bird,
And in the bird there wakes an eye,

Within the eye, earth, sea and sky,
Earth, sky and sea within an O
Lie like the seed within the flower.

--------


That glorious poem discovered via Poet's Choice in the Sunday Washington Post book world, by a poet Edward Hirsch describes as "an enigmatic and mystical nature poet of great rectitude and seriousness [who] believed with W. B. Yeats, her second master in poetry, that 'poetry and religion are the same thing.'" I need to get one of her collections ASAP.

Spent nearly all day yesterday doing family Rosh Hashanah activities, at synagogue, then at family dinner; today my husband's parents are coming and we may all (both families) go to Great Falls to see the river near flood crest. Also have to do the weekly review round-up which is annoyingly time-consuming as I have to read a pile of Enterprise reviews and wonder why I didn't think of certain things and how some people can bother to care about other things.

Meanwhile, I can get nothing else accomplished -- not even proper atonement for my sins of the past year...as if -- because Faramir has moved into my head and is trying to tell me a long, porny alternative post-LOTR epic whose schmoop factor is excessive even by my standards. And he won't shut up. I blame and Lucius Malfoy for this, because apparently my brain requires some possibility of happily-ever-after at all times. And when I ask The Boromir Who Lives In My Head how he feels about this, he's all corny and happy about it. *shakes head*

Saturday, September 27, 2003

Poem for Rosh Hashanah


Awakening
By Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb


Shekinah gazed upon the sleeping form of HeShe.
"I shall divide this being
So HeShe can find loving companionship
Like the other creatures in the garden."
HeShe lay asleep in the grass
Curled up like a snake in the warm sun
Dreaming of angels.
Shekinah thought,
"Which part of the body
Shall I take to form the woman?
Perhaps from the mouth
So she can tell stories like Serach,
The woman who smells of time.
Perhaps the eyes
So she sees the inside truth of things
Like Soft Eyes Woman Leah.
Perhaps from the neck
So she walks with pride
Like the daughters of Zelophehad
Who are Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah.
Perhaps the ears
So she hears my laughter
Like See Far Woman Sarah.
Perhaps the heart
So she flows with tender mercies
Like Soft heart Woman Rachel.
Perhaps the arms
So she heals and restores with touch
Like the Hebrew midwife women.
Perhaps the legs
So she goes out seeking wisdom
Like Truth Seeking Woman Dinah.
Perhaps from the flower of her passion
So she enjoys the fruits of her body
Like Shulamit."
Then Shekinah blessed every part of the woman's body saying,
"Be pure of heart
And always know you are created in My image."
Then she awoke, first woman.


Last night we celebrated with my parents, my husband's parents and old family friends; this morning we are going to synagogue. It's a gorgeous day, going up nearly to 80 degrees. L'shanah tovah everyone.

Friday, September 26, 2003

Poem for Friday


We are keepers of the flame, Eshet lapidot.
Like Devorah, we make the wicks for
the Mishkan's eternal light
And kindle the fires of holy time.
Fire transmutes substance,
Grain into bread,
Clay into pot,
Cold into the warmth of the hearth.
With this flame we honor Shekinah,
Mother and Creator,
And we initiate this holy day.

Let us bless the source of life
that ripens fruit on the vine,
weaving new threads into
the tapestry of tradition.

The round loaf feeds the people we love.
Let us recount the women who baked bread
And from whom we learned our recipes.
Shekinah, like bread,
Is manna to our souls.
She feeds us the yeast
That helps us rise to this occasion.

Blessed are You who gives us the New Year,
A sign of beginning anew.
Blessed are You, as we start all over again.

--------


No Friday Five this week, they're on vacation. is on squicks today; too annoying for my mood, and my squicks are too inconsistent and mutable, anyway. But look, made me a new "a stiffy is a terrible thing to waste" icon! With Aragorn, who I'm sure coined the motto!

It's my older son's tenth birthday and Rosh Hashanah starts tonight. Have a happy day, everyone. I will be having dinner with my family, parents, husband's parents and old family friends; tomorrow we're going to late morning services and out for pancakes, as we do every new year with my parents.


The Ultimate LiveJournal Obsession Test
CategoryYour ScoreAverage LJer
Community Attachment68.82%
You're the Kevin Bacon of LiveJournal, with friends galore to support you. Fear cruisedirector's army of fans!
25.54%
MemeSheepage63.16%
I am but one quiz among millions. My brethren surround me on the page.
30.83%
Original Content80.65%
Newsweek, People, and cruisedirector's journal
40.86%
Psychodrama Quotient22.89%
Your dark side's safe with us
16.77%
Attention Whoring40.91%
You'd sell your mother for another three friends
21.98%

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Poem for Thursday and <lj comm


June Light
By Richard Wilbur


Your voice, with clear location of June days,
Called me outside the window. You were there,
Light yet composed, as in the just soft stare
Of uncontested summer all things raise
Plainly their seeming into seamless air.

Then your love looked as simple and entire
As that picked pear you tossed me, and your face
As legible as pearskin's fleck and trace,
Which promise always wine, by mottled fire
More fatal fleshed than ever human grace.

And your gay gift—Oh when I saw it fall
Into my hands, through all that naïve light,
It seemed as blessed with truth and new delight
As must have been the first great gift of all.

--------


: Lost and Found, for the lost challenge, because I'm schmoopy that way.

Had long work day yesterday intercut with meeting my mother for what was supposed to be lunch and chores, which ended up being just chores as I had several stops that had to be made at the mall (packages to mail, presents to buy). I didn't eat lunch till after I picked my kids up at 3. Wrote three quick articles, reviewed Enterprise half-asleep...Extinction, at Trek Nation, and I must not have done a half-bad job of it because I have already gotten hate mail about the review, unlike last week when I received no hate mail at all.

And I woke up this morning and realized: I have got to do something about my Friends list. I don't stand a chance of catching up, and that's after less than 24 hours. Okay, so I did spend a bit of time yesterday writing porn and editing fic. That's necessary for my sanity. So are the fic communities I frequent. But even having sworn off RPS, I don't have time to read or comment on things, let alone keep up with everyone's lives.

Am not wasting my time on that "about my LJ" meme everyone is doing, but for some sick reason I wasted my time on this, which is quite true:

You are a casual Legolas fangirl.
Casual: Yeah, you think he's good looking, you
appreciate his skill at killing things but
other than that you don't get that excited.
Perhaps you're a fan of the canon Legolas and
were pleased with his movie incarnation but
you're very laid back about it.
What type of Legolas fangirl are you?
brought to you by Quizilla


Finally, a rec stolen from , a series of fake (slashy) Harry Potter advertisements by based on those new HP ads for adults, here.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Poem for Wednesday


Sonnet 94
By William Shakespeare


They that have power to hurt and will do none,
That do not do the thing they most do show,
Who, moving others, are themselves as stone,
Unmoved, cold, and to temptation slow,
They rightly do inherit heaven's graces
And husband nature's riches from expense;
They are the lords and owners of their faces,
Others but stewards of their excellence.
The summer's flower is to the summer sweet,
Though to itself it only live and die,
But if that flower with base infection meet,
The basest weed outbraves his dignity:
For sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds;
Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds

--------


Above for , because I agree. Also there are two lines in that one that scream out plot bunnies to me, and she can probably figure out which.

Re: kinky LOTR vibrator discussion: actually, we were trying to come up with a parody of Queer Eye For the Straight Guy using LOTR characters. Then we realized that we couldn't come up with a single truly straight guy. Except maybe Grima.

And while I'm on the subject of , she pointed me to WWYS®, which told me: "Your soul is worth £9826. For your peace of mind, 79% of people have a purer soul than you." Hmmph. Below, my standard response to Myers-Briggs, this one gacked from :

ENFP - "Journalist". Uncanny sense of the motivations of others. Life is an exciting drama. 5% of the total population.
Take Free Myers-Briggs Personality Test


Lots of work to catch up on, and LOTS of mail and comments still unanswered. And I have to review tonight. Always the bunnies bite when that happens. Better go!

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Poem for Tuesday


Read Your Fate
By Charles Simic


A world's disappearing.
Little street,
You were too narrow,
Too much in the shade already.

You had only one dog,
One lone child.
You hid your biggest mirror,
Your undressed lovers.

Someone carted them off
In an open truck.
They were still naked, travelling
On their sofa

Over a darkening plain,
Some unknown Kansas or Nebraska
With a storm brewing.
The woman opening a red umbrella

In the truck. The boy
And the dog running after them,
As if after a rooster
With its head chopped off.

--------

I have done the unthinkable, thanks to . I wrote Janeway/Chakotay -- "Resolutions" J/C no less! Just a drabble, for the brand-new water challenge. But I am still going to hell again for going back there, I'm sure. : Squall.



My son at the top of one of the vertical climbing walls at his birthday party on Sunday (the one where we couldn't have pizza or homemade cake due to Hurricane Isabel, which will surely make it an entertaining story in ten years...)

Monday, September 22, 2003

Poem for Monday


Hardware Sparrows
By R. T. Smith


Out for a deadbolt, light bulbs
and two-by-fours, I find a flock
of sparrows safe from hawks

and weather under the roof
of Lowe's amazing discount
store. They skitter from the racks

of stockpiled posts and hoses
to a spill of winter birdseed
on the concrete floor. How

they know to forage here,
I can't guess, but the automatic
door is close enough,

and we've had a week
of storms. They are, after all,
ubiquitous, though poor,

their only song an irritating
noise, and yet they soar
to offer, amid hardware, rope

and handyman brochures,
some relief, as if a flurry
of notes from Mozart swirled

from seed to ceiling, entreating
us to set aside our evening
chores and take grace where

we find it, saying it is possible,
even in this month of flood,
blackout and frustration,

to float once more on sheer
survival and the shadowy
bliss we exist to explore.

--------


A poem found by typing "after the storm" into the search engine at the Academy of American Poets, so stunningly appropriate that for the tenth or eleventh time since last Thursday I am wondering whether someone is trying to tell me something.

My computer still will not boot into safe mode but has decided for reasons unknown to me to allow me to run Roxio Easy CD Creator. I am thus, very very slowly, recovering my own data. It is amazing how, in the face of a cataclysmic disaster, things merely being slow and frustrating and chaotic seems like an utter blessing. I am sure THAT was the lesson of yesterday...

Thank you all very, very much for all the good wishes. I am certain that the vibes helped. Real notes later; if you sent me e-mail before the storm, odds are good that I will lose it, and if you sent me anything for beta, please send again.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

Be Careful What You Wish For, A Lesson

And this morning I said to whatever higher power might have been listening that the only thing I wanted was electricity. Power for my son's birthday party at the climbing gym (which we got), power at the pizza place so we could bring in food (which we didn't get, but the only real consequence was that everyone ate too much junk and got hyper and had sugar headaches), power at home. Got that.

Tonight I tried to play a music vid I'd downloaded and my computer crashed. And would not reboot. Would not let me run system restore, would not boot into safe mode. I called Dell Tech Support and after an hour on the phone being walked through various XP restore options, was told my registry is irrevocably FUBAR. I have to reinstall the system.

I am going to lose two months of work, since like a fucking moron I haven't backed up since we got back from our trip. I should have backed up my drive the moment I got home and got power -- it had occurred to me, considering that I was cursing myself for not having backed it up to disc which would have allowed me to get at files while on the laptop at the trailer yesterday. But no, I was too greedy, too busy wanting to update and chat and see the fucking vid.

Moral: BACK UP YOUR GODDAMN HARD DRIVES! NOW!

Anyway, I spoke too soon when I said I was back; I can use the laptop when my husband doesn't need it but my computer is going to be out with the data recovery people while I pray desperately that they can at least get my work files and rough drafts of Serious Writing off.

So I bitched about losing the contents of my refrigerator; BFD, I have now probably lost all the photos of my kids I've taken for the past two months. I have lost all articles I've written, research for articles I've written and notes for articles I've written. I'm missing a load of mail that will now never get answered, sorry, and a couple of notes I really wanted to save. I'm missing drafts of fic and logs of fic written with other people and notes and one-liners and you know, putting it all in perspective, I don't really care about the $150 worth of food at all.

I'm sure I was supposed to have learned some important life lesson from all this. But mostly what I've learned is that I don't feel closer to the Divine celebrating Shabbat as it was meant to be, by candlelight, when I'm feeling cut off from absolutely everyone and everything else; that it's all well and good to remember that other people have it worse but that doesn't really make me feel any better in the midst of a disaster; and that no matter how good out-of-town friends may be, take away the computer and they just aren't fucking close enough.

I'm going to go quietly tear my hair out now.

Poem for Sunday


Tichborne's Elegy
By Chidiock Tichborne


My prime of youth is but a frost of cares,
My feast of joy is but a dish of pain,
My crop of corn is but a field of tares,
And all my good is but vain hope of gain;
The day is past, and yet I saw no sun,
And now I live, and now my life is done.
My tale was heard and yet it was not told,
My fruit is fallen and yet my leaves are green,
My youth is spent and yet I am not old,
I saw the world and yet I was not seen;
My thread is cut and yet it is not spun,
And now I live, and now my life is done.
I sought my death and found it in my womb,
I looked for life and saw it was a shade,
I trod the earth and knew it was my tomb,
And now I die, and now I was but made;
My glass is full, and now my glass is run,
And now I live, and now my life is done.

--------

From Poet's Choice in The Washington Post today, on poems written at the edge of the grave.


MY LIGHTS ARE ON! After slightly more than 72 hours without power...we have power. We even have cable!

And now I must go scrape out the freezer, run out and replace all our perishables...and TAKE A SHOWER.

Saturday, September 20, 2003

Waving From The Dark Side

Here I am in lovely Westminster, MD at Ramblin' Pines campground. Why have I decided to go camping, you may ask? Well, it is quite simple. At home, we have no power, no hot water, and it's dangerous to light a propane lantern. Here in Ramblin' Pines (some of which are on the ground, but no matter), there are hot showers and electrical outlets in the buildings and in my in-laws' trailer, and no smell of rotting food on a deck that needs to be raked...again. Plus we can light as many lanterns as we want with no fear of burning down the house. So I am just going to sit on the porch of this here trailer and enjoy the fresh air!

Tomorrow we are supposed to have my son's tenth birthday party at a climbing gym. The gym seems to have power, since their answering machine picked up when we called; however, the county has closed all the parks for soccer and other sports for the weekend. So we really have no idea whether we can hold his party, nor where -- not our house, obviously, as we can't even bake the cake there.

It has now been 48 hours since we lost power and the entire contents of our fridge is a loss. We estimate that we threw out $150 worth of food. However, we are betting my mother loses closer to $500 worth, as she has a basement freezer. We suspect a piece of our 13-year-old wedding cake may be in there someplace. Perhaps this is not a great loss.

Ashinae, everywhere I have looked for phone cards I have found either domestic-only or cards with really cheap rates to Asia, but not to Canada! It is a conspiracy to keep us out of touch with Canadians before we become too pro-gay marriage, I am sure. But I am going to find a way to stalk you anyway. Heh.

If you are craving poetry tomorrow, go to the Washington Post web site, click on "Book World" and scroll down for the link to the Poet's Choice column. Or visit bartleby.com and read some Tennyson! Will write back to everyone when I can stay online for a sustained period. Thanks so much for the good wishes.

Friday, September 19, 2003

Still Powerless

Spent a lovely romantic post-Isabel evening folding laundry and playing Uno with the kids by candlelight, then talking on the phone for several hours -- long time since I've done that! Had breakfast with warm remaining milk, now have to throw out pretty much everything in the fridge. My father needs a ride to the airport which is apparently open and running, as is my husband's office. I picked a good week to get the flu!

Looked at my mail -- 180 messages and I'm not going through them on a laptop on battery power. Hope everyone is having a lovely Friday and was, as we are, only inconvenienced by the storm rather than suffering real problems!

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Isabel!

Our power is out, our cable is down, I am shutting the laptop and assume I am off for the night. Enjoy the storms everyone!

Poem for Thursday


The Storm
By Theodore Roethke


1

Against the stone breakwater,
Only an ominous lapping,
While the wind whines overhead,
Coming down from the mountain,
Whistling between the arbors, the winding terraces;
A thin whine of wires, a rattling and flapping of leaves,
And the small street-lamp swinging and slamming against
        the lamp pole.

Where have the people gone?
There is one light on the mountain.

2

Along the sea-wall, a steady sloshing of the swell,
The waves not yet high, but even,
Coming closer and closer upon each other;
A fine fume of rain driving in from the sea,
Riddling the sand, like a wide spray of buckshot,
The wind from the sea and the wind from the mountain contending,
Flicking the foam from the whitecaps straight upward into the darkness.

A time to go home!--
And a child's dirty shift billows upward out of an alley,
A cat runs from the wind as we do,
Between the whitening trees, up Santa Lucia,
Where the heavy door unlocks,
And our breath comes more easy,--
Then a crack of thunder, and the black rain runs over us, over
The flat-roofed houses, coming down in gusts, beating
The walls, the slatted windows, driving
The last watcher indoors, moving the cardplayers closer
To their cards, their anisette.

3

We creep to our bed, and its straw mattress.
We wait; we listen.
The storm lulls off, then redoubles,
Bending the trees half-way down to the ground,
Shaking loose the last wizened oranges in the orchard,
Flattening the limber carnations.

A spider eases himself down from a swaying light-bulb,
Running over the coverlet, down under the iron bedstead.
The bulb goes on and off, weakly.
Water roars into the cistern.

We lie closer on the gritty pillow,
Breathing heavily, hoping--
For the great last leap of the wave over the breakwater,
The flat boom on the beach of the towering sea-swell,
The sudden shudder as the jutting sea-cliff collapses,
And the hurricane drives the dead straw into the living pine-tree.

--------


Posting while I can; if the weather forecasters are right, I may not be able to get online for quite awhile beyond this afternoon. Here is my review of Enterprise's "Anomaly" for TrekToday; it's quite political, as was the episode.

Last night I had a dream about a college professor whom I adored. She was in my house, looking over my library, and she wanted to borrow a bunch of my books for a paper she was writing because she couldn't find the books anywhere else. I was pretty sure as I handed her the books that I would never see them again, since I only talk to her a couple of times a year and haven't seen her in person since...wow, 1999 maybe? But I was still thrilled to be giving her the books because I hoped that she would think of me when she saw them on her shelves. I wonder what it means.

The Potion Maker
cruisedirectorium is a cloudy, porous white solid pulled from the leaves of a dead briar.
Mix with cruisedirector! Username:
Yet another fun meme brought to you by rfreebern


Gacked from , and speaking of Potions...

rebel snape
You are...Rebel Snape! Found most commonly in
Marauder-era fics, you also crop up
occasionally in canon-era stories, usually when
you're shocking the hell out of Harry with your
utter coolness. With your leather clothing,
tight body, laid-back personality, and skill on
the Quidditch pitch, it's no wonder that
everyone from Lucius Malfoy to Voldemort
himself wants to shag you. However, when you
flip your ponytail and take off on your antique
motorcycle, readers might wonder just what
happened to Sirius Black...
What Wildly Out-of-Character Fanfic Snape Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Snow Day...Before The Equinox

Our wonderful county, which last year had to add two days of school back to summer vacation and one to spring break (when we were in London, having made the plans long before all the snow days) has cancelled school for tomorrow in anticipation of Hurricane Isabel...which is not supposed to hit the DC area until early evening.

Last year it was the sniper; the year before that it was September 11. Are my kids EVER going to have a normal first month of school?

Lisa Moscatiello was wonderful despite the fact that the city of Rockville set up the stage not in the middle of the farmer's market where it should have been but directly in front of the movie theater, backing up to a construction zone. So we had people running in and out of the theater behind us, and enormous trucks digging up the ground just behind the stage. Sheesh!

I did ask her to play her new song about rotten love (it starts "You were trouble from the start" but I'm not sure if that's the title) and she did. So I am happy!


Last Winter's Transportation

Poem for Wednesday


At the Gym
By Mark Doty


This salt-stain spot
marks the place where men
lay down their heads,
back to the bench,

and hoist nothing
that need be lifted
but some burden they've chosen
this time: more reps,

more weight, the upward shove
of it leaving, collectively,
this sign of where we've been:
shroud-stain, negative

flashed onto the vinyl
where we push something
unyielding skyward,
gaining some power

at least over flesh,
which goads with desire,
and terrifies with frailty.
Who could say who's

added his heat to the nimbus
of our intent, here where
we make ourselves:
something difficult

lifted, pressed or curled,
Power over beauty,
power over power!
Though there's something more

tender, beneath our vanity,
our will to become objects
of desire: we sweat the mark
of our presence onto the cloth.

Here is some halo
the living made together.


I feel like death and got maybe two hours of sleep last night, but my husband just called to remind me that Lisa is giving a free concert in Rockville in forty minutes. So despite the nearly 100 e-mails in my box, the Trek news that needs updating and the fact that I can't inhale without coughing, I am going. Because sometimes sanity is more important than health, and the work will still be there when I get back.

Apologies if I owe you a letter.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Poem for Tuesday


Wildwood Flower
By Kathryn Stripling Byer


I hoe thawed ground
with a vengeance. Winter has left
my house empty of dried beans
and meat. I am hungry

and now that a few buds appear
on the sycamore, I watch the road
winding down this dark mountain
not even the mule can climb
without a struggle. Long daylight

and nobody comes while my husband
traps rabbits, chops firewood, or
walks away into the thicket. Abandoned
to hoot owls and copperheads,

I begin to fear sickness. I wait
for pneumonia and lockjaw. Each month
I brew squaw tea for pain.
In the stream where I scrub my own blood
from rags, I see all things flow
down from me into the valley.

Once I climbed the ridge
to the place where the sky
comes. Beyond me the mountains continued
like God. Is there no place to hide
from His silence? A woman must work

else she thinks too much. I hoe
this earth until I think of nothing
but the beans I will string,
the sweet corn I will grind into meal.

We must eat. I will learn
to be grateful for whatever comes to me.

--------


Why so late? Oh. That would be because I slept till 10 and still can't feel my fingers well enough to type. Am not sure whether this is from being sick or from the Nyquil. It would help if sinus pressure would stop shoving my brains against the top of my head, thus making them both hurt.

Gacked from , was aiming for the same answer as she got, would be perfectly content with this one (as long as he's, you know, pre-Department of Mysteries):

I'm Mrs. Sirius Black

The HP Male Marriage Quiz made by Sapphire.


Also, gacked from everyone on LiveJournal practically:

My journal says I'm 60% masculine.
What does your LJ writing style say about your gender?
LJ Gender Tool by


tells me that this is old news but until I read about them this morning in 's journal, I did not know about the Gay Penguins In Love!

Is that everything? I think that's everything.

Monday, September 15, 2003

Poem for Monday


The Watch
By Mrs. Rogers


Oh mute, machine, what figurest thou?
Thou hast no tongue to tell me now
The symbol thou art
Of a broken heart
Which no more can tremble or glow.

Some blow has crushed thy master spring,
Thou art a senseless, speechless thing!
And the voice that told
How time grew old,
Has done with its answering.

Silent wreck of the power of art,
Yes, thou art like a broken heart,
Which lies in the breast
With its pulse at rest,
And has ceased to quiver and Smart!

To it, in vain, on leaden wings,
Hopes, and sorrows, and cares,
Time brings; Its impulse is crushed,
Its answer is hushed,
A wreck are its wheels and springs!

The master-pulse is motionless,
Mute alike to sorrow or bliss!
Some mechanist's skill
May renew thee still,
But what art can remedy this!

--------


From an 1827 collection of awful women's poetry. Or at least I thought it was awful until a friend reminded me of the speech in Shakespeare In Love where he tells a friend that his words are limp, his poetry unmanly, and the guy pretty much asks, "Having trouble getting it up these days?"

The good news: Python's "Grail" Goes Broadway. Woo hoo!

The bad news: I'm sick. Have my husband's horrible head cold, and cramps to boot. Feel crappy, hence no poem till 12:45. Had in-laws over last night for dinner, took son to 's son's birthday party and caught up on random gossip with her and her family. Finished work, have more to do but not this moment.

I did, however, accidentally write fic. Will post in a minute.

Saturday, September 13, 2003

Poem for Saturday


Before the Beginning: Maybe God
and a Silk Flower Concubine Perhaps
By Pattiann Rogers


The white sky is exactly the same white
stone as the white marble of the transparent
earth, and the moon with its clear white
swallow makes of its belly of rock neither
absence nor presence.

The stars are not syllables yet enunciated
by his potential white tongue, its vestigial
lick a line that might break eventually,
a horizon curving enough to pronounce
at last, my love.

The locked and frigid porcelain barrens
and hollows of the descending black plain
are a pattern of gardens only to any single
blind eye blinking, just as a possible stroke
of worm, deaf with whiteness, might hear
a lace bud of silk meridians spinning
and unraveling simultaneously on the vacuous
beds of the placeless firmament.

An atheist might believe in the seductive
motion turning beneath the transparent gown
covering invisibly the nonexistent bones
and petals of no other. Thus the holy blossom,
spread like the snow impression of a missing
angel, doubts the deep-looped vacancy
of her own being into which god, in creation,
must assuredly come.

Is it possible there might be silver seeds
placed deep between those legs opening
like a parting of fog to reveal the plunging salt
of a frothy sea? But god digresses, dreaming
himself a ghost, with neither clamor nor ectasy,
into inertia, his name being farther
than ever from time.

Static on the unendurably boring white
sheet of his own plane, he must think hard
toward that focus of conception when he can rise
shuddering, descending and erupting into the beauty
and fragrance of their own makng together --
those flowering orange - scarlet layers and sun-
shocking blue heavens of, suddenly, one another.

--------


is trying to kill me with this picture of Sean Bean sucking off demonstrating how to load a rifle. Guuuuhhhhhhhh.

My editor is still sick; I am starting to worry about him (and also about me, as I have had no life for several days now and there is a PILE of stuff to be done and I am not going to do it all as my son has soccer and we have various other things to do with the kids.

Gacked from . Eeeee!

Delusions of grandeur? I think not. You WILL rule the world by age thirty!
Megalomaniac Lex, Much? Delusions of grandeur? I
think not. You WILL rule the world by age thirty!
Which is Your Form of dysLEXia?
brought to you by Quizilla


Tonight they're showing previews of both Secondhand Lions and A Year In Tuscany (if I got the titles right). Sometimes I wish I could go to movies when I feel like it rather than when I can arrange babysitting.

And my father needs to fucking stop making little jokes about how I should leave my younger son home, or we can all fucking stop coming over.

Friday, September 12, 2003

Poem for Friday and <a href


The Nap Taker
By Shel Silverstein


No -- I did not take a nap --
The nap -- took -- me
Off the bed and out the window
Far beyond the sea,
To a land where sleepy heads
Read only comic books
And lock their naps in iron safes
So that they can't get took.

And soon as I came to that land,
I also came to grief.
The people pointed at me, shouting,
"Where's the nap, you thief?"
They took me to the courthouse.
The judge put on his cap.
He said, "My child, you are on trial
For taking someone's nap.

"Yes, all you selfish children,
You think just of yourselves
And don't care if the nap you take
Belongs to someone else.
It happens that the nap you took
Without a thought or care
Belongs to Bonnie Bowlingbrook,
Who's sittin' cryin' there.

"She hasn't slept in quite some time--
Just see her eyelids flap.
She's tired drowsy -- cranky too,
'Cause guess who took her nap?"
The jury cried, "You're guilty, yes,
You're guilty as can be,
But just return the nap took
And we might set you free."

"I did not take that nap," I cried,
"I give my solemn vow,
And if I took it by mistake
I do not have it now."
"Oh fiddle-fudge," cried out the judge,
Your record looks quite sour.
Last night I see you stole a kiss,
Last week you took a shower,

"You beat your eggs, you've whipped your cream,
At work you punched the clock,
You've even killed an hour or two,
We've heard you darn your socks,
We know you shot a basketball,
You've stolen second base,
And we can see you're guilty
From the sleep that's on your face.

"Go lie down on your blanket now
And cry your guilty tears.
I sentence you to one long nap
For ninety million years.
And when the other children see
This nap that never ends,
No child will ever dare to take
Somebody's nap again."

--------


: Grounds For Expulsion, in which Lex tries to get kicked out of school. Again.

Come and knock on our door, we've been waiting for you, when the kisses are hers and hers and his, three's company too. R.I.P. John Ritter.

Momentary squee: Variety reports that Christian Bale will play Batman in Christopher Nolan's reworking of the saga, set for a 2005 release. Nolan, best known for the indie thriller Memento, will direct the film from a script by David Goyer.

Friday Five:

1. Is the name you have now the same name that's on your birth certificate? If not, what's changed?

It's identical to the name on my birth certificate. On very rare occasion I answer to my husband's last name but it's not on any of my paperwork.

2. If you could change your name (first, middle and/or last), what would it be?
I wouldn't. On occasion I have had to, to protect my identity or because there was someone else in my profession with an identical name, and it has made me unhappy.

3. Why were you named what you were? (Is there a story behind it? Who specifically was responsible for naming you?)
My parents named me after my maternal grandfather, who died before I was born.

4. Are there any names you really hate or love? What are they and why?
I love goddess names -- Asherah, Shekhinah, Morrigan, Astarte, Isis, Inanna, et al. I don't think there are names I really hate except by association with despicable people.

5. Is the analysis of your name at kabalarians.com accurate? How or how isn't it?
It is so thoroughly wrong that it's quite funny. Says I'm a hard worker with a meticulous sense of detail, which is only true on the rare occasions when I make it so. I am independent but not patient, I cannot always be trusted to complete my undertakings, and I don't think of "stable, trustworthy, homeloving, and logical" as anywhere on the top ten words that describe me, other than trustworthy in most cases. It also says I do not have much vision or imagination, which I would find downright insulting did it not go on to tell me that I find it difficult to express the depth of my feelings, and it limits me to practical matters of the day, filling my life with detailed routine, hard work, and monotony. I am thoroughly unimpressed with the Kabalarians.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Xindi Me

Here's my review of "The Xindi" at Trek Nation. Many thanks to for letting me bounce ideas off her.

Gacked from my wonderful lunch date, , who saved me from driving myself nuts over a job I don't get paid enough to drive myself nuts over, though I think I rediscovered my fandom this morning somewhere between Salon.com's guilty praise for Enterprise and USA Today's blasting it:

Morpheus
Morpheus
?? Which Of The Greek Gods Are You ??
brought to you by Quizilla


There's a beautiful enormous harvest moon on a cool clear gorgeous night, and I am trying not to think about the fact that in half an hour it will be September 11.

Poem for Wednesday


A Heathen Hymn
By Sir Lewis Morris


O LORD, the Giver of my days,
My heart is ready, my heart is ready;
I dare not hold my peace, nor pause,
For I am fain to sing Thy praise.

I praise Thee not, with impious pride,
For that Thy partial hand has given
Bounties of wealth or form or brain,
Good gifts to other men denied.

Nor weary Thee with blind request,
For fancied goods Thy hand withholds;
I know not what to fear or hope,
Nor aught but that Thy will is best.

Not whence I come, nor whither I go,
Nor wherefore I am here, I know;
Nor if my life’s tale ends on earth,
Or mounts to bliss, or sinks to woe.

Nor know I aught of Thee, O Lord;
Behind the veil Thy face is hidden:
We faint, and yet Thy face is hidden;
We cry,—Thou answerest not a word.

But this I know, O Lord, Thou art,
And by Thee I too live and am;
We stand together, face to face,
Thou the great whole, and I the part.

We stand together, soul to soul,
Alone amidst Thy waste of worlds;
Unchanged, though all creation fade,
And Thy swift suns forget to roll.

Wherefore, because my life is Thine,
Because, without Thee I were not;
Because, as doth the sea, the sun,
My nature gives back the Divine.

Because my being with ceaseless flow
Sets to Thee as the brook to the sea;
Turns to Thee, as the flower to the sun,
And seeks what it may never know.

Because, without me Thou hadst been
For ever, seated midst Thy suns;
Marking the soulless cycles turn,
Yet wert Thyself unknown, unseen.

I praise Thee, everlasting Lord,
In life and death, in heaven and hell:
What care I, since indeed Thou art,
And I the creature of Thy word.

Only if such a thing may be:
When all Thy infinite will is done,
Take back the soul Thy breath has given,
And let me lose myself in Thee.

--------

I had a moment of, "Is this too traditionally patriarchally religious-sounding for my journal?" And then a moment of, "Fuck it, it's my journal and if it's not too traditionally patriarchally religious-sounding for me on this day-before-the-anniversary-of-9/11, then readers will deal."


TEN articles in a day and a half, count them. And I must review Star Trek Enterprise (you know, I DO enjoy writing that) tonight. Meaning: no I didn't read anyone else's LJ, no I didn't watch whatever it was on TV, no there's no fic in the works.

But I must admit something: in between getting stressed over the stuff TrekWeb was finding faster than I was, which meant I would have to attribute the discoveries to them because I'm honest that way (whereas when they nick items from us practically word for word, they never say "thanks to TrekToday for the heads-up" despite not being able to keep basic facts straight like which country a play will be performed in), I really enjoyed the news scramble. It's been years since I had to plow through timely headlines like that, even if this is, after all, Star Trek and not rocket science.

And those are very bad run-on sentences, and was not around to make sure I was using proper British English with gratuitous Os thrown in and Zs turned into Ss. Eek.

Am off on Very Important Business with , may not be back until midnight after reviewing and posting, hope everyone has a very lovely day. Oh yes, the one non-Trek article I did read this morning: Hillary Potter and the Senate Chamber of Secrets. Because, heh.

Back From Back To School

...Night, which was tonight. My younger son's teacher looks 18 and sounds, well, 19. She was attacked rudely by several parents unhappy with the county's new math program, which admittedly sucks, but they pay her to stand up there and defend the useless textbooks...why do they bother publicly attacking the teacher when they could be writing her private notes about things they hope will get covered in class despite the books, or better yet, petitioning the school board?

My mother is squeeing over The Da Vinci Code. I only spent most of college and grad school trying to get her to read Holy Blood, Holy Grail, The Moon Under Her Feet, The Woman With the Alabaster Jar, etc. (all Dan Brown "source material"). Ah well, at least she understands why I am too Pagan to be a proper Jew at Washington Hebrew.

So Leni Riefenstahl is finally dead. Was going to post something about this but decided instead to reread and 's excellent posts. As someone who can't even enjoy Sean Connery movies because he's said so many heinous things about the (mis)treatment of women, you didn't honestly think I'd defend the artistic value of Triumph of the Will, did you?

In headline news, from The Onion: Relations Break Down Between U.S. And Them. The graphic alone is so perfect it's painful.

Editor is still sick. Enterprise premieres at 8 p.m. Am going to have long miserable work day.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Poem for Tuesday


The House of Life: 19: Silent Noon
By Dante Gabriel Rossetti


Your hands lie open in the long fresh grass,--
The finger-points look through like rosy blooms:
Your eyes smile peace. The pasture gleams and glooms
'Neath billowing skies that scatter and amass.
All round our nest, far as the eye can pass,
Are golden kingcup-fields with silver edge
Where the cow-parsley skirts the hawthorn-hedge.
'Tis visible silence, still as the hour-glass.

Deep in the sun-search'd growths the dragon-fiy
Hangs like a blue thread loosen'd from the sky:--
So this wing'd hour is dropt to us from above.
Oh! clasp we to our hearts, for deathless dower,
This close-companion'd inarticulate hour
When twofold silence was the song of love.

--------


Last night I watched the American Experience installment on the building and destruction of the World Trade Center. The last hour was utterly devastating, as expected -- I haven't watched that footage continuously since the day it happened, and I do wonder what the producers were thinking, playing swelling music over footage of the buildings collapsing -- we don't need some fucking score to remind us how we're supposed to feel! But the first hour and a half on the building and development of the architecture, the ruin and rebirth of Cortlandt Street, the tightrope walker who spent several hours walking between the buildings before being arrested and then becoming a folk hero with a plaque for his stunt (damn I love America that way), the idea of the towers as anchors across New York...wonderful stuff.

My grandparents were all from Brooklyn and we used to go up there regularly; my in-laws lived in Hartford until they retired two years ago, and my sister lives in Armonk, and we drive past New York City to visit either of them. So although I hadn't been in the WTC in years before it was destroyed, it had been on the periphery of my life forever, and was the one structure my kids always looked out the window and identified as we approached the city from New Jersey on the way north.

I learn wonderful things from the people on the staff list at GMR. This week on the What's New page, Grey quoted the "Where now the horse and the rider?" song sung by the Rohirrim and adapted in the film of The Two Towers into a speech by Theoden. "Tolkien was inspired by, very clearly, the so-called 'ubi sunt' passage of the Old English poem 'The Wanderer,' one of the Old English elegies from The Exeter Book, a tenth century manuscript that contains most of the Old English poetry outside of Beowulf," wrote Lisa Spangenberg on the mailing list, providing a link to a picture from "The Wanderer" (though the bit Tolkien was inspired by, she says, comes a bit later in the poem). , I am sure you already know this but I thought of you immediately.

Gacked from , this is my older son's birthstone and not terribly true of me but I do like the stone a lot:

Sapphire
You're a Sapphire. You seem to be unreachable, but
deep inside, you are really a nice and warm
person. You are elegant and get along well with
people once you know them.
What Jewel Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Monday, September 08, 2003

Poem for Monday and <lj comm


Variation on the Word Sleep
By Margaret Atwood


I would like to watch you sleeping,
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you,
sleeping. I would like to sleep
with you, to enter
your sleep as its smooth dark wave
slides over my head

and walk with you through that lucent
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves
with its watery sun & three moons
towards the cave where you must descend,
towards your worst fear

I would like to give you the silver
branch, the small white flower, the one
word that will protect you
from the grief at the center
of your dream, from the grief
at the center. I would like to follow
you up the long stairway
again & become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands
to where your body lies
beside me, and you enter
it as easily as breathing in

I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
& that necessary.

--------


: Never Hit Bottom, for the dreams challenge. Sirius, and falling.

"The role of a librarian is to make sense of the world of information. If that's not a qualification for superhero-dom, what is?" asks librarian Nancy Pearl, who is now the first librarian I know of to be immortalized with an action figure! There's another quote on this page that I really love, by James Quinn: "Our whole American way of life is a great war of ideas, and librarians are the arms dealers selling weapons to both sides."

R.I.P. Warren Zevon. Found via , too amusing not to post:



You are one big mystery. One moment you're hugging trees, the other you're talking about a distant planet... You are sure you and Snape were connected with each other in some way in a previous life.
Why are YOU obsessed with Snape?

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Sunday Evening

Back from hiking at Great Seneca, where we waded through waist-high undergrowth that did not exist the past two years, saw lots of huge spiders in impressive webs, and caught glimpses of the occasional groundhog and deer (closer to the road -- why do they DO that?) It was an amazingly beautiful day, especially under the pines. The creek was swollen from the wet summer and there were leaves falling...I guess autumn really is arriving.

Since we were up in Gaithersburg I dragged my family into The Walnut Tree, which was having a 20% off sale on jewelry. One can never have too many cheap silver Pagan charms, can one? And one's children can never have too many crystals or fossils, can they?

And OH! I forgot to mention! I finally saw Mars! Last night it was finally clear enough for the amateur hobbyist to set up a telescope and get a good look. I've worn glasses for less than a year and I must admit I have not yet gotten the hang of looking through telescopes or binoculars with them on -- how do other people manage?

I had to fold a lot of laundry while my husband took our younger son to soccer, so I made my younger son watch A Midsummer Night's Dream with me. Had forgotten how good the Michael Hoffman production actually is, despite Calista who was not as bad as I remembered. It's very easy for a ten year old to follow and concise and well-paced enough that they don't get bored. And the visuals...wow, someone studied their Hughes and Waterhouse and Rackham and Millais and Parrish and Rossetti. Stunning. And Christian Bale, mmmm.

Since I've pimped Sean and Viggo news today, I might as well link to the very sweet Orlando Bloom GQ article. Ohh those curls.

More Fannishness!

Everyone has found Viggo in the New York Times, yes? (LL, if you are reading this, will you save your print copy for me, please please please?)

My good friend from London reports that early this morning on BBC 24 television, they did an item on movie locations -- "New Zealand obviously, then a Bollywood film shooting on the Scots moors, and then Troy built in Malta...they treated us to about five seconds of Mr. Bean in similar Greek costume [to that photo with the puppy] but with armour, eating in the canteen along with crew and non-starry players also in costume (no sign of the golden boys)...as BBC-24 repeats over the weekend at regular hours, I've now caught it twice...he looks as if he's having a great time -- as if it's one enormous away football match, which it probably is..."

Poem for Sunday


The Pupil
By Donald Justice


Picture me, the shy pupil at the door,
One small, tight fist clutching the dread Czerny.
Back then time was still harmony, not money,
And I could spend a whole week practicing for
That moment on the threshold.
                        Then to take courage,
And enter, and pass among mysterious scents,
And sit quite straight, and with a frail confidence
Assault the keyboard with a childish flourish!

Only to lose one's place, or forget the key,
And almost doubt the very metronome
(Outside, the traffic, the laborers going home),
And still to bear on across Chopin or Brahms,
Stupid and wild with love equally for the storms
Of C# minor and the calms of C.

Discovered via today's Poet's Choice column by Edward Hirsch in The Washington Post, on Justice's elegiac verse.

--------


Fannish Friday Five, gacked belatedly from several people and interesting enough to jot down for posterity:

1. What celebrity would turn you into a complete and utter fangirl/fanboy if you met them in person?
I did it for Louise Fletcher during a phone interview; I'm sure I'd do it in person as well. Also Glenn Close, for whom I did it in person outside the theater where she was doing Benefactors in 1986. And maybe Anjelica Huston. But really I don't even want to meet any of the celebrities I think I admire; I learned that lesson the hard way.

2. What is the MOST fannish thing you have on public display in your home? In your office?
The entire wall over my desk, which is in a corner of the dining room and thus very public space, is covered with fannish memorabilia so it would be hard to pick just one item.


Viggo and Sean drawings by Kim Schultz, Janeway/Chakotay drawing by DRush, Trek caricature by Ben Burg, and I have no idea who took the Lee Remick and Amelia Earhart photos. To the right is a much larger collection of buttons than can be seen in this photo; on the wall perpendicular are DRush drawings of Kai Winn, Kira, Boromir and Xena, plus a mini-LOTR calendar (the one where Legolas had to be turned as on a spit), two little moon-shaped mirrors and a Lady Pendragon action figure, while to the left is a bookcase absolutely crammed full of Trek and LOTR memorabilia, plus the witch visible in the photo. You can't see the Janis Joplin action figure on my desk, nor the miniature Aragorn and Boromir busts on my computer, either.

Also, when people come into our bedroom and see the Star Trek action figures all set up on the TNG bridge set, the DS9 transporter and the engineering set (which houses the Voyager crew though it's TNG), they tend to laugh at us. Well, at me.

3. What is the most public space you've read fic? Did anyone notice?
I tend not to print fic out, there's just too much of it, so it's rare for me to be sitting on a park bench with handfuls of smut. Probably it was in a restaurant when someone gave me a zine and we sat snickering aloud over certain phrases. I have had people look at me and my friends in restaurants very strangely more than once while discussing fic.

4. What is your most embarrassing moment when you had to explain something fannish to a mundane?
I don't remember any deeply embarrassing moments, though it might have been trying to explain to my parents and children why Boromir was making a "Want to blow the Horn of Gondor" remark to Aragorn on the birthday card my husband made me.

5. Name a fannish moment for which you wish you could have a "do over" and fix.
Telling Kate Mulgrew that I would come back and run her fan club several months after I'd turned it over to someone else. THAT is a classic example of having turned into a fangirl at the worst possible moment, and I should have known better and I DID know better but I did it anyway.


My son's hamster, doing his best impression of Winnie the Pooh stuck in Rabbit's doorway.

Saturday, September 06, 2003

Poem for Saturday


Nothing Gold Can Stay
By Robert Frost


Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

--------


I take it that everyone who would want to has already seen this picture of Sean Bean from the Troy shoot in Malta with a puppy. I'm linking to it anyway in case the two copies I saved in different folders on my hard drive somehow spontaneously combust.

Have some personal, family shit going on. Don't want to talk about it, don't want sympathy though random spare vibes are always appreciated. But it's making it difficult for me to keep up with my massive Friends list so if I don't comment on something, please don't take it personally.

Had wonderful lunch yesterday with who is going to London practically on a whim (*sobs of envy*), spent lovely evening finishing fic with and harrassing with whom I had the following slightly edited conversation about things we have near our desks:

ycd: I have a miniature monthly LOTR calendar
ycd: Damn, and I have to go turn Legolas
cee: ROFLOL!!!
cee: <--has mental picture of bound & gagged legolas on a spit
ycd: I meant on the calendar! It's still August here
cee: I know you did, it merely engendered that image
ycd: "Boromir, you're right, the lack of meat on this journey has become most distressing. Get the Elf."
cee: *honk*
ycd: Sorry.

Am off to collect my son from Hebrew school and see Lisa Moscatiello who is singing for free at a local bookstore opening. Happy Saturday!

Friday, September 05, 2003

Poem for Friday and <a href


From 35 Sonnets
By Fernando Pessoa


Whether we write or speak or do but look
We are ever unapparent. What we are
Cannot be transfused into word or book.
Our soul from us is infinitely far.

However much we give our thoughts the will
To be our soul and gesture it abroad,
Our hearts are incommunicable still.
In what we show ourselves we are ignored.

The abyss from soul to soul cannot be bridged
By any skill or thought or trick of seeming.
Unto our very selves we are abridged
When we would utter to our thought our being.

We are our dreams of ourselves, souls by gleams
And each to each other dreams of others’ dreams.

--------


With many thanks to for the poet and the poem!

Lots of random silly thoughts this morning, none of which deserves a full paragraph. Hated the concert, did not go anywhere near downtown so as to avoid traffic for it, loathed and despised listening to Dubya compare football to American values (as Tom Shales asked in the Washington Post this morning, which values would those be -- violence and greed?) Was nonetheless relieved that the Redskins did not humiliate themselves in the season opener, though I barely watched a second of the game which was on in the background all evening and I agree completely that no team called "the Redskins" should have fans anyway.

I rather like the new LJ layout, it's cleaner and easier to navigate assuming one's browser is current enough, in fact it reminds me of some of the things I like about JournalFen only less cluttered. Also, have had a revelation: I would rather read long entries on my Friends page, even if there are lots of illustrations, than have to deal with cut tags and waiting for LJ to load pages and reload after "Cannot Find Page" and all that. If you must take five quizzes in a day and post all of them, just put 'em out where I can see 'em along with the rest of your entry.

Should I say something at this late date about Neil Gaiman, psycho fans and the RPS debacle? Nah. Other than sheesh, it's bad enough when people hand actors slash about their characters and I've interviewed enough to know. Egotistical borderline personality idiots masquerading as academics! I knew enough of those in grad school!

Friday Five:

1. What housekeeping chore(s) do you hate doing the most?

Scrubbing bathtubs. Would rather scrub toilets.

2. Are there any that you like or don't mind doing?
Folding laundry. Can be done with the TV on, is nice and repetitive.

3. Do you have a routine throughout the week or just clean as it's needed?
HOWL! It's clean when things are so revolting that people might refuse to go in the room if it gets any worse.

4. Do you have any odd cleaning/housekeeping quirks or rules?
My kids are responsible for their own sink. I don't know how they manage to get toothpaste in the places they get it, but I refuse to try to scrub it off the walls, mirror, ceiling, etc.

5. What was the last thing you cleaned?
The breakfast dishes.


Was feeling the need for something interesting to look at and thinking happily about the fact that next summer, the locusts return. I don't remember them from when I was three and I thought it was neat being surrounded by them while interning downtown in college. This isn't a locust but a cousin; it was outside National Geographic Explorers' Hall last weekend, and I like it anyway.


Am going to meet for cheesecake as she is feeling the need and I can get Thai peanut noodles at the same restaurant. And there's a Borders. And a Suncoast. Off to browse, I am.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Poem for Thursday


From The Book of Questions
By Pablo Neruda
Translated by William O'Daly


III.

Tell me, is the rose naked
or is that her only dress?

Why do trees conceal
the splendor of their roots?

Who hears the regrets
of the thieving automobile?

Is there anything in the world sadder
than a train standing in the rain?

--------


Short superb Neruda for . Hope you are over the flu, sweetie.

I started to do that "fandoms my friends write but I don't know about" meme, then panicked about Due South, because one of my friends will stop talking to me if I favor one guy while another will stop talking to me if I favor the other one. Also, I decided that I don't know enough about Pros to make clever snarky comments, anyway. But in case anyone is keeping track, the fandoms I do read widely enough that they have their own folders of saved fic on my hard drive are:

Andromeda (I ship Dylan/Beka, Dylan/Tyr and Beka/Tyr absolutely equally, will also ship Tyr/Harper, Tyr/Trance, Tyr/Rommie, Beka/Rommie, Trance/Rommie or really any other permutation, it's all the show's good for);
Avengers (anyone with any Steed/Peel please let me know, though will read Steed/Gale too);
Buffy (which encompasses what minimal Angel I've read);
DS9 (sub-folders for K/O, G/B, O/B and Dukat);
Enterprise (Reed is so very very gay!);
Harry Potter (the Lupin/Black sub-folder is bigger than everything else in that fandom put together though I save Marauders fic and Snape fic, plus maybe five grownup H/D stories);
James Bond (mostly Brosnan-era, 99 percent GoldenEye for reasons you can all guess);
La Femme Nikita (Operations/Madeline, though have quite a bit of Nikita/Michael, just never cared as much);
Lord of the Rings (much more A/B, B/F and A/A in various permutations than anything else, but I have quite a lot of Eowyn fic and hobbit fic as well, though I could never write the latter);
Mission: Impossible (the TV show, pretty much all Rollin/Cinnamon and none of it good);
Pirates of the Caribbean (just because of sheer volume -- I really don't consider myself involved in this fandom);
The Prophecy (all archived at The Devil Made Me Do It);
Sentinel (never wrote a word of it, barely watched the show, but some of the fic is amazing);
Sharpe (oddly, this is one fandom in which I really enjoy crossovers);
Smallville (one sub-folder for girlslash, one for Lionel, a bunch with author's names on them, and then the vast teeming mass of Clex);
Space: 1999 (a brief but intense flirtation with J/H);
Star Trek (the original, and want to guess at the size of the K/S sub-folder?);
ST:TNG (Riker/Troi, P/C and P/Q in sub-folders);
Star Wars (original and prequel, slash and het, I'm all over the place with this one);
Starsky and Hutch (never really watched it but hey, it's classic);
Voyager (Janeway/Chakotay has its own massive folder, with sub-folders by individual authors and sub-sub-folders of epics, story collections etc.; the general Voyager folder also has sub-folders for just about every possible pairing and trio plus lots of gen authors);
X-Files (more M/S than M/Sk or M/K, I really did not slash this show much, and have a weakness for Doggett/Reyes);
West Wing (undivided by 'ships, which should tell you something about my lack of investment);
Xena (including the entire Hercules universe, with a huge guilty sub-folder of Ares fic);
a bunch of literary-based fic from Pride and Prejudice to Narnia to the vamps of She Who Sues Fanfic Writers;
a bunch of one-offs from movies, mostly starring Louise Fletcher, Sean Bean or Viggo Mortensen;
and a folder full of articles on the legal, moral and entertainment aspects of fan fiction.

Oh yeah, speaking of whom, and which. The, um, RPS folder, with sub-folders for boy-band stuff written by people I know, SV-based stuff, Trek stuff that I don't want to talk about, and a massive lotrips folder where the VM/SB fic, drabbles and series all have their own sub-folders because there are so damn many I saved.

Aaaand speaking of RPS, mentioned in an introduction to one of her drabbles that she'd read that Sean Bean loves old churches, inspiring to find The Other Mr. Bean: "A BLOKE'S BLOKE, THEN?" asks the hypothetical interviewer about Sean Bean, and then answers his own question: "Not exactly. He likes old churches and adores William Shakespeare."

So, okay, I know that viggorli fans believe adamantly that Viggo's poem "Communion" is about Orlando Bloom, because of the line "bloom of compassion." Which I think is just coincidence, but this is the part of "Communion" I've always wondered about:

YOUR BREATH
DOWN MY BACK
SENT AWAY NIGHT AIR
THAT HAD ME SHAKING
IN THE UNLIT ANGLICAN
DOORWAY.

So this came up in last night, where was looking up a body of water in New Zealand for travel-related purposes having nothing to do with LOTR filming and found "Whangaparaoa Bay: A succession of picturesque bays leads to Whangaparaoa Bay (Cape Runaway), 50km (31mi) west of the North Island's East Cape. The beaches are deeply shelved and littered with driftwood, and the old Anglican church, nestled under Norfolk pines on a lone promontory, should not be missed. Cape Runaway can only be reached by foot, and it's advisable to seek permission before going on private land." And you know what seemed obvious to several people simultaneously? "It's the unlit Anglican doorway from Viggo's 'Communion'!" And really...who would hang out in unlit Anglican doorways, unless he was with someone who loves old churches?


Ahem. Oh look. AGAIN! And I really thought I was giving Hufflepuffish and Gryffindorian answers!


I'm from Ravenclaw!
Hogwart's Sorting Hat Quiz
made by The Genki Gang

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Poem for Wednesday and <lj comm


I Loved You
By Alexander Pushkin


I loved you; and perhaps I love you still,
The flame, perhaps, is not extinguished; yet
It burns so quietly within my soul,
No longer should you feel distressed by it.
Silently and hopelessly I loved you,
At times too jealous and at times too shy.
God grant you find another who will love you
As tenderly and truthfully as I.

--------


No yet today, apparently. But I realized that I missed on Monday due to its being a holiday, so I did it today: Watchful. It's more musings on Lupin, who keeps taking over my brain.

Was reading this post discovered via on the MTV VMAs and RPS, which made some really provocative points. Also Johnny Depp Says U.S. Is Like a 'Dumb Puppy'! He had me going until he said he thought the French government is less dumb. Heh.

Things I hate: When people refer to the room with the veil in the Department of Mysteries as "the Death Chamber." When people put up posts threatening to unFriend anyone who doesn't respond to said post. The fact that it's after 12:30 p.m. and I am still not showered, not dressed, not remotely organized, yet have been awake and on this computer all morning with only a ten minute break for breakfast. I seriously need to get my priorities in order.

Because I promised to do this, here it is. Heh.


Look! We found Nemo at the aquarium this weekend!

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Why Viggo Mortensen Is My Wet Dream And Other Fannish Nonsense

"I landed in The Prophecy exactly the same way I did in The Lord of the Rings, that is, at the last minute...though I did not have much time to prepare for the role, the character interested me, I explored his story. I see him as the prodigal son, very gifted but such a rebel that his father throws him out of Paradise. I asked myself how he would have reacted? He, certainly, would feel misunderstood, exactly because he was the most intelligent and the brightest of all the angels. Inevitably he would tell himself 'Why has he rejected me?' So, he will have ego problems. Ultimately, he’s very human, in a certain way very close to Aragorn because he also possesses powers of a certain magnitude."

The above is from Ringbearer.org's translation of Cine Live's interview. (Pulling out old draft of Aragorn/Lucifer fic tossed aside as too implausible...)

Also, X-Files was right! Or at least close. End of the world party, my place.

And because location is everything:

secret fic kinks by wisteria
character 1
character 2
locationa graveyard
positionbent over a tombstone
kinkvideotape
moodmild amusement
Created with quill18's MemeGen!

Poem for Tuesday


Poppies
By Sandra McPherson


Orange is the single-hearted color. I remember
How I found them in a vein beside the railroad,
A bumble-bee fumbling for a foothold
While the poppies' petals flagged beneath his boot.

I brought three poppies home and two buds still sheathed.
I amputated them above the root. They lived on artlessly
Beside the window for a while, blazing orange, bearing me
No malice. Each four-fanned surface opened

To the light. They were bright as any orange grove.
I watched them day and night stretch open and tuck shut
With no roots to grip, like laboratory frogs' legs twitching
Or like red beheaded hens still hopping on sheer nerves.

On the third afternoon one bud tore off its green glove
And burst out brazen as Baby New Year.
Two other poppies dropped their petals, leaving four
Scribbly yellow streamers on a purple-brimmed and green

Conical cadaver like a New Year's hat.
I'd meant to celebrate with them, but they seemed
So suddenly tired, these aging ladies in crocheted
Shawl leaves. They'd once been golden as the streets

Of heaven, now they were as hollow.
They couldn't pull together for a last good-bye.
I had outlived them and had only their letters to read,
Fallen around the vase, saying they were sorry.

--------


Went to Theodore Roosevelt Island with my in-laws yesterday. It was hot in the sun but gorgeous in the shade, with baby ducks and salamanders and various interesting insects all around, and I took some neat photos that I will endeavor to resize and post later. Then we came home so son number two could go to soccer practice and I finished up my three articles and did some major overhauling of one of my web sites.

Moon Curse, my entry in the Remus/Sirius Fuh-Q-Fest, has been posted. It's in answer to challenge #28, "Remus is cured," and it's a genre of fic I rarely read and generally can't stand. My partner in crime said she was scared when I sent it to her for beta. So be warned: there's no smut, and there's some extreme weirdness.

has also done a lovely job with the layout on . Lucius/Severus 4eva!

Gacked from , one of the few I am not allergic to, and the quiz went well with today's poem.

rose
what's your inner flower?

[c] sugardew

Monday, September 01, 2003

Poem for Labor Day


Shirt
By Robert Pinsky


The back, the yoke, the yardage. Lapped seams,
The nearly invisible stitches along the collar
Turned in a sweatshop by Koreans or Malaysians

Gossiping over tea and noodles on their break
Or talking money or politics while one fitted
This armpiece with its overseam to the band

Of cuff I button at my wrist. The presser, the cutter,
The wringer, the mangle. The needle, the union,
The treadle, the bobbin. The code. The infamous blaze

At the Triangle Factory in nineteen-eleven.
One hundred and forty-six died in the flames
On the ninth floor, no hydrants, no fire escapes--

The witness in a building across the street
Who watched how a young man helped a girl to step
Up to the windowsill, then held her out

Away from the masonry wall and let her drop.
And then another. As if he were helping them up
To enter a streetcar, and not eternity.

A third before he dropped her put her arms
Around his neck and kissed him. Then he held
Her into space, and dropped her. Almost at once

He stepped to the sill himself, his jacket flared
And fluttered up from his shirt as he came down,
Air filling up the legs of his gray trousers--

Like Hart Crane's Bedlamite, "shrill shirt ballooning."
Wonderful how the pattern matches perfectly
Across the placket and over the twin bar-tacked

Corners of both pockets, like a strict rhyme
Or a major chord. Prints, plaids, checks,
Houndstooth, Tattersall, Madras. The clan tartans

Invented by mill-owners inspired by the hoax of Ossian,
To control their savage Scottish workers, tamed
By a fabricated heraldry: MacGregor,

Bailey, MacMartin. The kilt, devised for workers
To wear among the dusty clattering looms.
Weavers, carders, spinners. The loader,

The docker, the navvy. The planter, the picker, the sorter
Sweating at her machine in a litter of cotton
As slaves in calico headrags sweated in fields:

George Herbert, your descendant is a Black
Lady in South Carolina, her name is Irma
And she inspected my shirt. Its color and fit

And feel and its clean smell have satisfied
Both her and me. We have culled its cost and quality
Down to the buttons of simulated bone,

The buttonholes, the sizing, the facing, the characters
Printed in black on neckband and tail. The shape,
The label, the labor, the color, the shade. The shirt.

--------


In-laws coming, we're supposed to be going hiking and of course today, after going easy on me yesterday when I had time, my editor dumped three articles on me. Joy.

Last night I dreamed I was in some sort of drama school (at least, Julia with whom I went to summer drama school at Catholic University nearly 20 years ago was there, along with some other people from that program), and Jensen Ackles was there too which I am sure is 's fault and although he was a sweetheart, I was so excited that this dark-haired funny guy on whom I had a crush seemed to be asking me out that I wasn't even that interested in what Jensen was up to. Is this mourning for my lost youth or what?

This because it is simply so true of my writing in general:

What Yaoi Fanfic Cliche Are You? by windandwater
LiveJournal Username
Favorite Number
Favorite Color
Your Yaoi Fanfic Cliche is"Plotless, pointless sex? Alright!"
Created with quill18's MemeGen!