Saturday, July 31, 2004

From Pennsylvania In A Thunderstorm

Having a lovely time in Hanover, where we arrived early this afternoon. There was a Dutch Craft Fair going on today so we went and walked around the tents -- Dutch here meaning Pennsylvania Dutch, meaning lots of furniture and food and some jewelry. Then we went out for an enormous dinner at the local Chinese buffet, being my younger son's favorite sort of restaurant, since we were celebrating his birthday belatedly with my husband's parents. Both kids got these arm things that shoot little discs (oh joy) and he got a build your own T-Rex skeleton, so he is very happy even though he doesn't know he's also getting a GameCube game but not till right before coming home so he doesn't get bummed that he can't play it while visiting here.

Tonight the local symphony did a free concert of patriotic music which we listened to a little of, since it was outdoors at the YMCA next door to this development. We saw lots and lots of bunnies and groundhogs but they were on the far side of the hill -- the dreaded Wal-Mart side -- on the way to dinner, so I have no pictures! The only wildlife photo I got in the backyard was of a big scary cat that had caught a bird. Woe. Also, Maximus appears to be a bigamist; there he was, all big and HUGE, with at least four littler groundhogs around him, and perhaps some of those were his adult children but they looked suspiciously amorous.

The old, abandoned Hanover movie theater, with some of the street fair visible in front.

St. Matthew's Lutheran Church, with the seventh largest organ in the world, in the distance behind the Dutch Craft Fair.

And the First United Methodist Church of Hanover, because I promised pictures of some of the landmarks.

My one purchase from the craft fair. Under $20. Isn't it lovely?

And what Hanover is famous for -- Utz potato chips, popcorn, cheese curls, snack mix and more come out of these factories!

I finished The Far Side of the World, which is one of those books that just gets better every page, and so completely different from the movie particularly near the end! I was very lukewarm on Stephen in this book; on the one hand he defends the Polynesian Amazons and the reasons women might wish to shun men forever in the sort of world they all know, but on the other hand he's still a raging hypocrite when it comes to women terminating pregnancies; he'll try to save one from dying from it but he won't help her avoid getting into a near-death situation to begin with. Well, he's a great improvement on that misogynist Martin anyway -- ick. I loved Stephen thinking of Diana dancing while defending women who enjoy sex and frolic and don't want to sit home taking care of babies when he and Martin are arguing about bird nesting behavior. And Jack is so gay in this book that it makes up for anything I didn't like (worrying like an old woman, hee). Ahh, desert island fantasies. Favorite quotes tomorrow night if I can get to them.

Poem for Saturday

A Suspended Blue Ocean
By Hafiz
Translated By Daniel Ladinsky

The sky
Is a suspended blue ocean.
The stars are the fish
That swim.

The planets are the white whales
I sometimes hitch a ride on,

And the sun and all light
Have forever fused themselves

Into my heart and upon
My skin.

There is only one rule
On this Wild Playground,

For every sign I have ever seen
Reads the same.

They all say,

"Have fun, my dear; my dear, have fun,
In the Beloved's Divine

O, in the Beloved's
Wonderful Game."


Rush rush rush to Pennsylvania this morning and back tomorrow evening, so I am way behind on everything as usual again (and we are going out of town for two weeks a week from today so ain't gonna get better before it gets lots worse). Had better remember to post in that Kira is meditating on Bajor and Jack has taken Stephen to some remote bird-covered island and both are unable to receive mail for a few weeks.

Unhappy warped thought for the day: if there was an Alzheimer's patient in the family of every rabid anti-choice activist who might change his or her mind about the importance of stem cell research, the way Nancy Reagan and Kate Mulgrew have, it would be good for both the women of this country and the future of scientific research. Why can't people respect other people's right to make choices that are different than those they might make themselves until they face personal crises, which have a way of making people realize that even their own choices are subject to their fluctuating, evolving morality? Why do women and elderly people have to die before they can see that having a government that limits science in the name of protecting the unborn can be lethal to those already born and living?

Hey, anyone who lives near a Barnes and Noble: they have The World of Jack Aubrey by David Miller for $5.98 on the bargain tables! (The one in Gaithersburg, Maryland, for instance, which has for some reason stuck them in the children's section -- lower left side -- has a stack.) Speaking of which: how many O'Brian books do we think I can reasonably expect to finish during a two-week vacation involving a lot of driving? How many should I bring with me?

Friday, July 30, 2004

Poem for Friday

Ignorant Before the Heavens of My Life
By Rainer Maria Rilke
Translated by Steven Mitchell

Ignorant before the heavens of my life,
I stand and gaze in wonder. Oh the vastness
of the stars. Their rising and descent. How still.
As if I didn't exist. Do I have any
share in this? Have I somehow dispensed with
their pure effect? Does my blood's ebb and flow
change with their changes? Let me put aside
every desire, every relationship
except this one, so that my heart grows used to
its farthest spaces. Better that it live
fully aware, in the terror of its stars, than
as if protected, soothed by what is near.


Poem for -- I found this one on one of the Rilke sites you linked to and just could not resist it.

My brain is absolutely refusing to wake up today even though I've been awake for hours. Stayed up with my son last night watching Kerry, even though he has camp today and had to get up early; he wanted to watch, I'm happy he's interested in the political process and has his own opinions on what's the matter with the Bush Administration, and -- okay, he wanted to watch the big flag made of balloons drop all over the podium. And of course afterwards I had to spend a couple of hours with transcripts, since I missed all the earlier speakers yesterday.

That was definitely the best speech I've ever heard Kerry give, and he hit some points I'd been hoping he would but not really counting on given the image the party seems to believe he needs to project (did anyone do a count of how many times he used the words "strength" and "Vietnam"?) I am so at the point where I don't care how he wins so long as he wins that I almost don't feel like I can judge. Every time I had a Proud To Be A Democrat moment, it was immediately followed by a long mental list of issues I wish they were emphasizing more, details of the platform I wish were more clearly presented, etc. I still think Edwards is a better public speaker, and since he's the one who'll debate Cheney, that's all to the good; for Kerry to sound better than Bush in a debate should really not be all that difficult.

Got to go write up some articles and catch up on about two hundred flist entries and answer a whole pile of e-mail before going to my in-laws' tomorrow. Today is the kids' last day of camp -- have to figure out exciting things to do with them next week before we go to New England. Anyone counting on fic from me and , I had better warn that it may be awhile; I have lots of demands on my time right at the moment.

Speaking of fic, I have a question for people I either know from way back or who are here because you knew my Voyager stories. The first few weeks I had this journal, I did what a lot of people do and filled it with many, many pointless entries and quizzes. Since that time I've realized that some people never check my web page but they do look at my memories here to see what fan fiction I've written; I've put some of my older stories in my memories, having edited some of those pointless entries to include the fic. I have most of the DS9 stories up now, but only a handful of the vast quantities of Janeway/Chakotay fic. If you've read my stuff, are there particular stories you think I should include in my memories here, in case I decide to make LiveJournal my fanfic archive and save the space on my server?

Gacked from most recently: one of the few times in my life I've come out regular anything!

The Regular Jo(e)
Category III - The Regular Jo(e)
You are the quintessential standard conjured by the word 'Friend'.

What Type of Social Entity are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Poem for Thursday

I Heard Him Say (His Mouth Was a Stone)
By Adonis (Ali Ahmad Said)


I heard him say
(his mouth was a stone):
"I no longer want
those heavy steps of mine.
And these chains in whose ringing I die.
God is the iron in my chains."

And he said, his eyelids
laden with dust, and invitation in his voice:
"The hour that was to come, has not."


My window is closed --
my window to whose light
I thread my eyes, my sight embalmed
with a shroud.
My present: blood --
destinies held hostage
in a homeland skirted by death.
As for the others -- the world is theirs.
God is lavishly served on a platter of brains.


I changed life: the form
of its motion, a fellow human
chained to his bread, choking for air --
God remains suspended in his throat
and still his voice overwhelms me
(his mouth a stone):
"I no longer want
these heavy steps of mine."


Could it be
salvation is fulfilled
only through my body, my death
a cause for resurrection? This is how we live:
singers in a chorus who arrange
their mirages into song
while caverns are sanctified
and monuments raised in their name.

Before me numerous others --
Christ and those who came after
among them -- have died; could it be
that salvation is fulfilled
only through my body.


I heard him say
(his mouth was a stone):
"We cannot see, not yet,
and the hour that will come
as they said, has stopped."
And it was said: yesterday he
disappeared, his voice vanished --
it was said that he had died.
He whose eyes were a horizon
and new windows, his voice
an invitation, his arms two streams
of red geraniums.

And it was said that those
who rushed to mourn him, mumbled together
and whispered among themselves;
is it only
            through blood then
                               that blood shall find its end?


Barbara Ehrenreich in this morning's New York Times:

The New Macho: Feminism
By Barbara Ehrenreich

The Dems couldn't be more butch if they took to wearing codpieces. Every daily convention theme contains the words "strength" or "strong," and even Hillary has been relegated to the role of wife. The idea, according to the pundits, is that with more than half of the voters still favoring Bush as the guy to beat bin Laden, Kerry needs to show that he's macho enough to whup the terrorists. Of course, everyone knows that the macho approach is notably less effective than pixie dust - otherwise, we wouldn't be holding our political conventions under total lockdowns.

Well, I've been reading bin Ladin - Carmen, that is, not her brother-in-law Osama (she spells the last name with an "i") - and I'd like to present a brand-new approach to terrorism, one that turns out to be a lot more consistent with traditional Democratic values. First, let's stop calling the enemy "terrorism," which is like saying we're fighting "bombings." Terrorism is only a method; the enemy is an extremist Islamic insurgency whose appeal lies in its claim to represent the Muslim masses against a bullying superpower.

But as Carmen bin Ladin urgently reminds us in "Inside the Kingdom," one glaring moral flaw in this insurgency, quite apart from its methods, is that it aims to push one-half of those masses down to a status only slightly above that of domestic animals. While Osama was getting pumped up for jihad, Carmen was getting up her nerve to walk across the street in a residential neighborhood in Jeddah - fully veiled but unescorted by a male, something that is illegal for a woman in Saudi Arabia. Eventually she left the kingdom and got a divorce because she didn't want her daughters to grow up in a place where women are kept "locked in and breeding."

So here in one word is my new counterterrorism strategy for Kerry: feminism. Or, if that's too incendiary, try the phrase "human rights for women." I don't mean just a few opportunistic references to women, like those that accompanied the war on the Taliban and were quietly dropped by the Bush administration when that war was abandoned and Afghan women were locked back into their burkas. I'm talking about a sustained and serious effort.

So John and John: Announce plans to pour dollars into girls' education in places like Pakistan, where the high-end estimate for female literacy is 26 percent, and scholarships for women seeking higher education in nations that typically discourage it. (Secular education for the boys wouldn't hurt either.) Expand the grounds for asylum to all women fleeing gender totalitarianism, wherever it springs up. Reverse the Bush policies on global family planning, which condemn 78,000 women yearly to death in makeshift abortions. Lead the global battle against the traffic in women.

I'm not expecting these measures alone to incite a feminist insurgency within the Islamist one. Carmen bin Ladin found her rich Saudi sisters-in-law sunk in bovine passivity, and some of the more spirited young women in the Muslim world have been adopting the head scarf as a gesture of defiance toward American imperialism. We're going to need a thorough foreign policy makeover - from Afghanistan to Israel - before we have the credibility to stand up for anyone's human rights. You can't play the gender card with dirty hands.

If Kerry were to embrace a feminist strategy against the insurgency, he'd have to start by addressing our own dismal record on women's rights. He'd be pushing for the immediate ratification of the U.N. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which has been ratified by 169 countries but remains stalled in the Senate. He'd be threatening to break off relations with Saudi Arabia until it acknowledges the humanity of women. And he'd be thundering about the shortage of women in the U.S. Senate and the House, an internationally embarrassing 14 percent. We should be aiming for at least 25 percent representation, the same target the Transitional Administrative Law of Iraq has set for the federal assembly there.

In my dreams, you say, and you're probably right. Maybe Kerry will surprise me in his speech tonight, but it looks as if the Democrats are too frightened of being labeled "girlie men" by the party of Schwarzenegger to do what has to be done. If you want to beat Osama, you've got to start by listening to Carmen.

© The New York Times


GIP courtesy , because Jack Aubrey got it drunk. *giggling* I had do that LiveJournal sex quiz, and got better results than I could have made up: apparently Kira will be sleeping with me (my Mary Sue fantasy fulfilled!), and (preferably at the same time...another Mary Sue fantasy of sorts, as I write one of them and a friend writes the other), and who was already on top of Kira's to do list. Damn but sometimes these memes are fun.

Today am having lunch with and , neither of whom have I seen in weeks! (And probably won't see for more weeks since we are going out of town.) Yay Indian food!

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Poem for Wednesday

By Arthur Rimbaud

    Assez vu. La vision s'est rencontrée à tous les airs.
    Assez eu. Rumeurs des villes, le soir, et au soleil, et toujours.
    Assez connu. Les arrêts de la vie. -- O Rumeurs et Visions!
    Départ dans l'affection et le bruit neufs!

    Everything seen...
    the vision gleams in every air.
    Everything had...
    The far sound of cities in the evening. In sunlight, and always.
    Everything known...
    O Tumult! O Visions! These are the stops of life.
    Departure in affection, and shining sounds.

    Seen enough. The vision was met with in every air.
    Had enough. Sounds of cities, in the evening and in the sun and always.
    Known enough. Life's halts. --O Sounds and Visions!
    Departure in new affection and new noise.

    Enough seen. The vision was encountered under all skies.
    Enough had. Noises of cities, in the evening, and in the sunshine, and always.
    Enough known. The pauses of life --
    O Sounds and Visions! Departure into new affection and new noise!

Second translation by Louise Varese. I wanted to post this back when I first saw Total Eclipse but, while there are numerous translations of the poem on the Internet (I only own Varese's which is not my favorite), very few people bother to note translators' names. This really frustrates me, as translating poetry in essence requires writing one's own poem on the same theme, making choices about where alliteration, rhyme and meter should be preserved versus where literal reflections of word choices are more important than the sound of the poem.


We were watching the Hornblower episode The Wrong War last night and noticed there was a documentary on the disc hosted by Edward Windsor. Somehow this did not ring a bell and make me say "Oh, Prince Edward" until he showed up onscreen. The documentary was quite good -- a history of British naval warships, with interviews with the historians on the HMS Victory and officers on the current HMS Manchester -- but Edward himself was really quite a revelation, sounding like a cross between Eric Idle and Ian McKellen and having a good sense of humor about atrocious aristocratic behavior, naughty sailors, naval tradition and toasting the Queen. He seems unsnobbish and fairly intelligent. Why is he not the most popular member of the Royal Family?

Anyway, The Wrong War was probably my least favorite Hornblower thus far, despite better visuals than some of the earlier ones and more homoerotic potential than I knew what to do with (I know I'm supposed to be slashing Horatio/Archie at this point in the series but I'm all about Captain Pellew, I can't help it). I appreciated Archie's "I don't want to die in someone else's bloody war" sentiments, but I felt like the actor was a bit over the top in several scenes and the guy playing the Marquis seemed to have gone to the John Cleese School For Playing Outrageous Foreign Aristocrats. Maybe it was the director, as even Hornblower had a few moments where I wanted to tell Ioan that we got it, he didn't have to keep making SUCH an agonized face.

But speaking of Hornblower, yesterday I got the remaining books in the series so now I can actually read them when I finish O'Brian. And in the mail I got a package that made me SO happy. When we were in Stratford-upon-Avon a year ago last April, I bought a little tin of tiny round mints made by the Chambers Candy Company with Shakespeare on the front. The mints lasted until about four days after we got home from England, then I started using the tin as a pillbox and became frantic for more mints. But I discovered that Chambers Candy didn't export directly, while their US distributor Christopher Brookes only sold in huge quantities for retail and none of the stores around me seemed to carry them.

Last week while researching the colors of Smarties for a Snape/Lupin story -- never say that fan fiction is not educational -- I discovered British Traditionals, which not only has my Shakespeare mints but aniseed comfits, and Williamson & Magor tea in elephant tins as well! And Smarties too. And my order arrived with a free tin of mints with angels on it. I am blissful.

It rained so hard this morning that our sump pump has been running every few minutes for the past two hours, even though the downpour stopped by 8:30. I had to Drano my tub drain and have not even braved the shower yet. Lazy day.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Poem for Tuesday

Parker's Mountain
By Kate Knapp Johnson

It is the summer bears ruled, the last summer
of pure breathlessness
when I moved unaware, taken in
by the netted branches of raspberries, held
in trance by the sweet air
of the orchards. My grandfather
died at home one night in early July
as expected, and the white clouds drifted like snow
on the face of the black lake.
Grandmother swept her porch clean, every morning
pushed grief under the railings like wisps
of an old bird's nest. Together
we watched the she-bear heave both bins
of garbage across the red clay road, her cubs
somersaulting each other, never minding
their mother's cautioning strikes. It is the summer
I was on the brink of seeing
some unexperienced light, although I stood
in darkness, or swam in spools
of dark while everything was bright around;
the gold lilies and their shadows flickered
one on one and the two swans stayed
faithful and fierce in their cove. I was twelve
and though I knew language
I did not know the meaning of things--
I lived within a lattice of time, unhurt,
undifferentiated, so that even in remembering now
there is only the singular quality
of that time itself; while I was there,
in its duration, I was possessed, wind-mastered
as the scrolled fields of clouds and disappointed
when the spell was broken and the real snow
came, and the cold.


I don't really know where yesterday went; I don't seem to have accomplished anything of note other than writing some unpostable smut with . My beloved sent me a Sirius Black Azkaban shirt from Hot Topic, which was the highlight of the afternoon; shall wear it to lunch today with and see if she is jealous, heh. Also, I boxed up all my old press kits taken home when the original went out of business owing me a few thousand dollars because they were threatening to avalanche beneath a stack of LOTR magazines. Wow I have a lot of Nicholas Cage stuff. Too bad I am not in love with him. My cats were very disturbed by this activity because, while I had several boxes out, they were not allowed to sit in them for more than a few minutes at a time.

made me bust a gut by pointing out this tribute to Ray Harryhausen featuring Skeletor and The Village People. I forget who I gacked the badass meme from but I wanted to be Ripley from Alien, since Lucius Malfoy is apparently not an option:

Which cult classic badass are you? by href=''>rook901
Favorite Eating Utensil
You are:dirty harry
Quiz created with MemeGen!

And one more shot from this weekend in front of the Maryland Science Center, looking through the funky sculpture at a ship, a harbor taxi, the aquarium, the power plant etc., because what's a day in Baltimore without a picture of the boats:

Monday, July 26, 2004

Poem for Monday

By James Joyce

Goldbrown upon the sated flood
The rockvine clusters lift and sway;
Vast wings above the lambent waters brood
Of sullen day.

A waste of waters ruthlessly
Sways and uplifts its weedy mane
Where brooding day stares down upon the sea
In dull disdain.

Uplift and sway, O golden vine,
Your clustered fruits to love's full flood,
Lambent and vast and ruthless as is thine


led to me the unfortunately addictive Candybar Doll Maker. Do NOT go here if you like dressing up Barbies and you have the potential to waste time. Here's one that's sort of an approximation of me, except she's too thin, limbs too long, hair not frizzing enough, eyes too big and there were no eyeglasses that were even close. And that little gray cat should be pouncing on something by now.

Snitched from with whom I share a favorite snack food (or would share if she offered me any, heh):

Your Future Job
Your Name
Favorite Snack Food
Your Job pirate
Yearly Salary $288,250.37
Your Boss Thinks You're a hollow shell of a human
Your Coworkers Think You're a kiss-ass
This Quiz by Gatsby - Taken 3911 Times.
New! Get Free Daily Horoscopes from Kwiz.Biz

I had other stuff to say about sports and politics and the DNC and the episode of Dawson's Creek I watched while folding laundry earlier, but it's all sort of inane. Am torn between struggling with Remus/Severus which is like pulling teeth to pull together right now or working on Lucius/Severus, which 1) flows more smoothly and 2) keeps telling me things that are going to happen to Severus much later, making Remus/Severus easier in the long run. Also feel like this is a really dorky dilemma and why am I working this hard on fanfic anyway. On the plus side, I must say that while commentary here remains sparse and discouraging, over at Fiction Alley it is really delightful and even kicks stuff over regularly, though I feel like I must be pretty pathetic to care.

Send Trek news. It's sparse today.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Science Museum With A View

The Maryland Science Center is twice as big as it was when we had our older son's birthday party there two years ago.

This is the dinosaur exhibit at the newly renovated museum, with some of the Baltimore skyline visible out the windows.

The dinosaur exhibit also had more modern lizards, but you can see the reflections of the dinosaur display in the glass of this guy's cage.

The Baltimore area as it looked a few years ago.

You can also design and test drive your own Mars rover...

...learn about Chesapeake Bay flora, fauna and ecology...

...look out the big windows at the Inner Harbor and the post-game crowds after the Orioles blew it to the Twins... at the water tables in the kids' area, where one can design contraptions with pipes, make water volcanoes erupt or squirt one's siblings...

...or visit the environmental exhibit, where there's a device that creates tornadoes.

After the Maryland Science Center we walked to Harborplace to browse, but left fairly soon as it started drizzling and was getting crowded with post-Orioles dinner crowds. The only drawback to the afternoon was horrible traffic on the Beltway going past the Mormon Temple, which we wrongly assumed at first might be baseball crowds headed all the way to Baltimore (as it turned out, the traffic even right past the stadium wasn't bad). When we went around one of the S-curves, we could see fire trucks, EMTs, road crews, police and a crane blocking two lanes next to a shattered barrier. Later we learned that a tractor trailer carrying mail had slid off the road and hit the barrier, jackknifing and hitting two cars. The lanes had been closed since before sunrise. I'm glad no one was seriously hurt, based on how bad the accident looked, but a little worried about packages I'm expecting, as the mail was apparently totaled as badly as the mail truck.

Poem for Sunday

Translated by Burton Raffel

Message to the Living (Unknown)

I'm dead, but waiting for you, and you'll wait for someone:
The darkness waits for everyone, it makes no distinctions.

Sailors (Simonides)

These men lying here were carrying honors to Apollo.
One sea, one night, one ship carried them to their graves.

An Epitaph (Theodoridas)

This is a drowned man's tomb. Sail on, stranger,
For when we went down the other ships sailed on.

An Epitaph (Plato)

I am a drowned man's tomb. There is a farmer's.
Death waits for us all, whether at sea or on land.

Amyntor (Antipater of Sidon)

Amyntor, Philip's son, lies in this Lydian soil.
His hands were full of iron war.
No sickness led him into the darkness:
He died holding his shield over a wounded friend.


The above are from today's Poet's Choice column by Edward Hirsch in The Washington Post Book World, on Pure Pagan -- a collection of seven centuries of Greek poems and fragments, selected, titled and translated by Burton Raffel. "The Greek term epigramma means 'inscription,' and, indeed, the epigram began as a poem compressed enough to be carved onto the limited space of a monument, a tombstone or the base of a statue. Precision of language has always been the hallmark of the form."

(It's Sunday...really?):
1. who was your favorite band/musican when you were younger? Paul Simon.
2. why? Duh, because he rocks.
3. are they still your favorite/one of your favorites? Yes.
4. what is your favorite of their songs? If I have to choose one, it's "A Poem on the Underground Wall".
5. are there any specific lyrics you hold dear?
These are the days of miracle and wonder
This is the long distance call
The way the camera follows us in slo-mo
The way we look to us all
The way we look to a distant constellation
That's dying in a corner of the sky
Therse are the days of miracle and wonder
And don't cry baby, don't cry
("The Boy in the Bubble")

And you read your Emily Dickinson,
And I my Robert Frost,
And we note our place with bookmarkers
That measure what we've lost.
Like a poem poorly written
We are verses out of rhythm,
Couplets out of rhyme,
In syncopated time
And the dangled conversation
And the superficial sighs,
Are the borders of our lives.
("The Dangling Conversation")

The mirror on my wall
Casts an image dark and small
But I'm not sure at all it's my reflection.
I am blinded by the light
Of God and truth and right
And I wander in the night without direction.
So I'll continue to continue to pretend
My life will never end,
And flowers never bend with the rainfall.
("Flowers Never Bend With the Rainfall")

"Fools" said I, "You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows.
Hear my words that I might teach you,
Take my arms that I might reach you."
But my words like silent raindrops fell
("The Sound of Silence")

I been Norman Mailered, Maxwell Taylored.
I been John O'Hara'd, McNamara'd.
I been Rolling Stoned and Beatled till I'm blind.
I been Ayn Randed, nearly branded
Communist, 'cause I'm left-handed.
That's the hand I use, well, never mind!
(A Simple Desultory Philippic")

Old friends,
Winter companions,
The old men
Lost in their overcoats,
Waiting for the sunset.
The sounds of the city,
Sifting through the trees,
Settle like dust
On the shoulders
Of the old friends.
("Old Friends/Bookends")

The Mississippi Delta was shining
Like a National Guitar
I am following the river down the highway
Through the cradle of the civil war
I'm going to Graceland.

Now from his pocket quick he flashes,
The crayon on the wall he slashes,
Deep upon the advertising,
A single worded poem comprised
Of four letters.
And his heart is laughing, screaming, pounding
The poem across the tracks rebounding
Shadowed by the exit light
His legs take their ascending flight
To seek the breast of darkness and be suckled by the night.
("A Poem on the Underground Wall")

If this (pointed out to me by ) is true, I will happily pay for the ROTK EE and not utter any more complaints. God I'm easy; give me Boromir and I shut up.

It's raining, and I think we are going to the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore. Maybe I will be able to see ships on the harbor in the mist. (Some comments are in this locked entry.)

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Poem for Saturday

In Cabin’d Ships at Sea
By Walt Whitman

In cabin’d ships, at sea,
The boundless blue on every side expanding,
With whistling winds and music of the waves—the large imperious waves—In such,
Or some lone bark, buoy’d on the dense marine,
Where, joyous, full of faith, spreading white sails,
She cleaves the ether, mid the sparkle and the foam of day, or under many a star at night,
By sailors young and old, haply will I, a reminiscence of the land, be read,
In full rapport at last.

Here are our thoughts—voyagers’ thoughts,
Here not the land, firm land, alone appears,
may then by them be said;
The sky o’erarches here—we feel the undulating deck beneath our feet,
We feel the long pulsation—ebb and flow of endless motion;
The tones of unseen mystery—the vague and vast suggestions of the briny world—the liquid-flowing syllables,
The perfume, the faint creaking of the cordage, the melancholy rhythm,
The boundless vista, and the horizon far and dim, are all here,

And this is Ocean’s poem.

Then falter not, O book! fulfil your destiny!
You, not a reminiscence of the land alone,
You too, as a lone bark, cleaving the ether—purpos’d I know
not whither—yet ever full of faith,
Consort to every ship that sails—sail you!
Bear forth to them, folded, my love—(Dear mariners! for you I fold it here, in every leaf;)
Speed on, my Book! spread your white sails, my little bark, athwart the imperious waves!
Chant on—sail on—bear o’er the boundless blue, from me, to every shore,
This song for mariners and all their ships.


Poem for -- I got your package, sweetie, thank you so much! I still have a pile of stuff sitting here for you from Washington and from the alternate-spelling Hanover and have not made it to the post office...I feel terrible! The photos are magnificent...I love looking at the old architecture, and is the sky always so blue there? *g* I think you will also appreciate the drawing below, sent by my marvelous and talented friend Kim:

Captain Jack Aubrey by Kim S. Schultz

Must go get organized and work so I can go to and 's party later! My mother is supposed to watch my kids but she has plans for tonight so we are pressed for time in the middle. And my stomach is still not quite right. I am sure I would be a much more pleasant person if whatever is up with it would just go away.

Friday, July 23, 2004


My children demanded television rights for the evening to watch The Fairly Oddparents Channel Chasers, which I expected to hold as little interest for me as most cartoons. Instead I have spent the past hour laughing my head off. Timmy gets a remote control that lets him travel through TV-time, where he meets his adult self who's like the Ghost of Television Past. So far they've parodied Peanuts, Scooby-Doo, Sesame Street, Blue's Clues, Speed Racer, Rugrats, The Simpsons, Dragonball-Z, Peter Pan and several Christmas specials among other things. Oh, and Billy Joel's Glass Houses. If you get Nickelodeon, it's on again tomorrow night at 8:00 p.m., and Sunday at 4 p.m. and it may not have aired at 8 p.m. yet tonight in Mountain or Pacific time. It is truly hilarious.

Also, decided that the world needs (I guess as an anecdote to , and with no tinhatting, I have been assured). So I had to post Jason Isaacs in hats, because, I mean, just look at him. And look at Sean Bean too, courtesy .

And gacked from :

I am flower named cruisedirector !
I consist of my friends!
Are you flower too?

Poem for Friday

Rock and Hawk
By Robinson Jeffers

Here is a symbol in which
Many high tragic thoughts
Watch their own eyes.

This gray rock, standing tall
On the headland, where the seawind
Lets no tree grow,

Earthquake-proved, and signatured
By ages of storms: on its peak
A falcon has perched.

I think, here is your emblem
To hang in the future sky;
Not the cross, not the hive,

But this; bright power, dark peace;
Fierce consciousness joined with final

Life with calm death; the falcon's
Realist eyes and act
Married to the massive

Mysticism of stone,
Which failure cannot cast down
Nor success make proud.


I am never going to catch up on my life; it's that simple. How in hell did Martha Stewart do it for so long? Does one have to be a crook with a team of cronies?

Also, sex with Legolas. I mean, he's not really my type but how bad could it be?

Your sex with Legolas would be more like making
love. Sweet and tender, romantic and loving...
Probably occuring in the forest of Lothlorien or
Mirkwood under a star studded sky, it would be
long, slow and sweet, most likely with Legolas
gently whispering beautiful Elvish poetry in
your ear. Could anyone really ask for more? :)
What Kind Of Sex Would You Have With Legolas?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thursday, July 22, 2004


This moth is easily five inches across with its wings spread; I've never seen the like before. Does anyone know what kind it is?

It doesn't have big red eyes when you look at it, by the way; that's what the flash did to it.

It made quite a racket for half an hour, bumping into the window, then clung to the bricks for awhile, and then disappeared. I wonder how long their lifespans are.

And sorry about the blur but I was shooting through a glass door with light reflecting in the pane (which is why the moth was there in the first place).

It's been a really long day, though not much has happened since I last posted...I did some work, tried to keep my son entertained (he had a friend over for a couple of hours in the afternoon before his violin lesson), made soup, reorganized my bookshelves and put all my Star Trek comic books away in boxes. Am not going to admit that this is so I have room for the Hornblower books when I get them. I have, like, ten packages that have to go to the post office for mailing overseas, and I still have not managed to drag myself there and deal with the lines.

And my house is still a total disaster. And I know I owe a billion comments -- tomorrow, hopefully, sorry I suck. And photos of Barbie and Ken as Galadriel and Legolas, with links to the Barbie dealer from whom I have had them on order for months before I'd seen them!

Barbie as Galadriel
Ken as Legolas