boldly go (The Orphan's Tales by Cathery

day of the wolf

on June 21st, call your family out've the deep, call your tribe, your beloveds, your fellow-huntresses and hunters, your sister-ghosts, your companion-lives. The rules will permit electronic vocalizations, but it's better if you howl.

This is the day of the wolf. This is the day when the wolves shed their winter coats and walk as women. You'll know them by the way their eyes catch up light and discard it again -- like pennies winking bright when they're discarded for luck or a wish in a fountain. The ladywolves (don't allow auto-spellcheck to transform ladywolves into ladyloves) don't leave their winter coats lying around in heaps colored like smoke or snow or bark. They're wise, see. The coats aren't there for any man or woman or child to grab and take and keep, and even if that happened, pity the sucker who tries to gain power that way.

They shuck their coats today, not their teeth.

As women, they know how to smile, and they still remember how to bite and set sweet heat running swift and visceral. They know how to draw blood.

thoughtful (artist - Aria Nadii)

Trouble, Turmoil, Japan

7.8 earthquake on Wednesday 8.9 earthquake and then a tsunami on Friday? Another strong(er) earthquake suspected? I do hope these aren't beforeshocks.

A tsunami 'getting out' to the wider Pacific?

Eesh. Horrifying.

How nice to know that Japan has a sophisticated tsunami warning system, although I'm sure it's a system that's had some refinement. The footage of dull-as-slate waves scraping cars and farm roofs along streets and not falling back again into an ocean that is separate from living-places is pretty awesome. As in, awe-inspiring, a thing of Awe. The brown murksome tide just looks like it's eating, and it's not going to stop, and it's incredible to look at. I just: it's incredible.

I'm glad that people -- institutions and authorities and governments -- seem to be on point about responding to this disaster as it unfurls.

Also, I wonder what sort of reaction Rameena's cruiseship is having, whether they're changing course, staying docked, or what, since there's a tsunami warning all through the Pacific basin? Since Hawaii's ordering people to evacuate from the coasts? (Heh, what is there besides 'coast' in Hawaii? I know, I know: mountain rainforest -- still.)

Right now, eight people are confirmed dead -- death toll expected to rise. I hope not too high; I'm so tired, so I will leave this entry here: with me, staring, wide-eyed, awed.
. . .

What ho, the gauntlet

My 'what's next, March?' challenge, answered thus far:

- nightmare; remember nothing of what it was about. Karkat. Cats. Neighbors. Eggs. The must not touch the ground imperative. Dusk falling into dark. The gathering gloom -- but taking forever; not at all Southern Californian. Not noticing this inside the dream, just outside the dream, like: oh, shit, dream self, don't you hear the soundtrack, the soundtrack is playing doom is about to strike music! Doing things. I guess it's not entirely unremembered.

- stuffy nose, sore throat, headache; sick? Noooooooo.

- cramps of doom? Nooooooo, your time is over now! Whyyyyyy are you still here I'm almost out of mint tea whyyyyy.

- rejection; a soooooper nice/encouraging one! still.

- pancakes made by younger brother, just to be nice, and eggs made also with the goal to be nice, although so dubious were the eggs contemplations of poison not too wild and crazy

- play through Scarbourough Fair at decent clip without looking at the music with no flubbing/mistake on the harp first time evar

- betrayed look by fat cat when she is stepped upon

- jaunty bouncing orange cat as soon as door to room opens, demanding play, all Prrr, Mrrr, MrrRRRrrr, Mrrr, Prr, Prr, Meer?, much as if he hadn't kept me awake until three

- The Winter Triptych & Jack o' the Hills ALL FOR ME, ME, ME, ME. Also, Cherie Priest's Bloodshot, another giftcard purchase.

- Discovery that both toaster and microwave have died. I blame the cold.

- Why can I see my breath in the living room? Must investigate.

- Accidental deletion of new-poem-in-the-works-I-quite-liked-damn-it, 'cause my finger slipped to 'Don't save' instead of 'save' before I realized I was don't saving my scratchpad file in which I type up emails and entries such as this one and other things throughout the day when the computer is on.

Verdict: I squint my eyes at you Contrarian March, in a manner meant to threatening and drama-laden, there is Western showdown music in the background, maybe the sound of a trainstop sign squeaking in the wind, to show we are in this thing now, yeah, we are in it, and we are doing it, and March you might wanna remember that not only do I mean to outlast you, but I can and will.

But I'll forgive everything if you somehow teach my feet to conserve warmth again. Brr.
  • Current Music

Pirate Gospel, Endymion Leer, March Ho!

Using a giftcard -- sparkling, untouched, full of power to buy self something fun without guilt -- I bought Alela Diane's album, The Pirate's Gospel. No, I did not make this decision based on the name alone, although I fully admit it's just the sort of title to go through me like a hook and tug.* I admit, I was a little worried. Was I allowing the awesome title to cloud my judgment, in spite of my firm belief to the contrary? Was I about to be inundated by a song or two to really enjoy while the rest blended into okay folksy harmony I'd probably really enjoy live but recorded just shrugged at - when I remembered there was music playing? Would I be disappointed, even I already knew I liked at least two songs she sung and one she sang part of?

But no! All is to the good.

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I believe Lud-on-the-Mist by Hope Mirrlees and The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge are book sisters, and not just because Lud-on-the-Mist has the Chanticleers and The Little White Horse has Monsieur le Coq.** I'm feeling a little sleepy and a lot rambly, and my brain is rambling around Lud-on-the-Mist, and if you haven't read the book and believe you'll be spoiled for it if you read on you might want to stop reading now.

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Also, today: I found myself in the position of explaining to somebody why I reread books. My physical therapist was genially baffled by the idea of rereading 'the same book? every year? why?' For some reason, I didn't think to say, Well, it's like rewatching a movie, which I think would have gone over better. Instead, 'Because I like to. I'm a reader.'

February is over. I wrote more Valentine Day Poem Invocations than I care to think. Sold a poem to Apex. (Yay, sneaky announcement.) Actually managed to send out some snailmail letters, which will hopefully find their way home. Surprised my Mom with pancakes shaped like letters of her name. Healed some. Read a number of really good books. Have a couple of short stories to edit and trim and snip into shape. Acquired external harddrive and have backed-up slowly coughing-spluttering/dying computer. Huzzah! I feel like February wasn't too bad, all told.

C'mon, March. What's next?

*Better name for hooking me: The Saltmaiden's Gospel. The Seamaid's Gospel. The Sealmaid's Gospel. The Sealwoman's Gospel. The Sealwife's Gospel. The Incredibly Badass Swordswoman's Gospel. Gospel of the Thorn. Bah; that sounds like an actual gospel.

**I want to throw Lolly Willowes by Sylvia Townsend into the kin-knot, but I've yet to reread it, so I'm not certain yet. Maaaaaybe The King of Elfland's Daughter.
thoughtful (artist - Aria Nadii)

Mirror World

I've been cleaning up old files, combing through old e-mails, trying to be somewhat organized (and put together a list of what I have had published and where, actually). I keep finding intriguing glimpses into Other Year Jesses. I also keep finding poems I wrote that I've completely forgotten writing, and some of them are good. Most of them surprise me. Even reading old poems I never forgot writing is surprising me lately. I made that? Really? With my own thoughts and I made those words do that? How cool. I rock.
  • Current Music
    Foreign Tongue, Alena Diane
thoughtful (artist - Aria Nadii)

Hallp. I am bored. It is raining.

Poll #1710263 Hark, A Rainy Evening!

What is the best ever online comic ever in a million years of online comics?

Something Positive
Girl Genius
Hark, A Vagrant!
Order of the Stick

What would you rather have as a mount during the apocalypse?

Motorcycle of tricked out gun-totin' DOOM
Magical pegasus (of awesome)
Zombie hordes, all under your control
Trained velociraptor (trained - TO KILL)
Family-friendly SUV

Jess is indecisive. What should she do with her evening?

watch Dark Crystal
watch Labyrinth
read The Poison King: the Life and Legend of Mithradates by Adrienne Mayor
reread Lud-in-the-Mist by Hope Mirrlees for the fiftymillionth time
read new Connie Willis book
read new Patricia McKillip book
reread Flora's Dare by Ysabeau Wilce
hey, didn't I give you a noveldraft to read? READ THAT.
hey, didn't I give you a story to critique? DO THAT.
hey, don't you have a swordwoman story to edit? DO THAT.
write a new story
write a new story set in the modern day
write a new story set in somewhere fantastical
a story? screw that! write a new poem
wait! write snailmail letters!

Or maybe Jess should make more quizzes?

Wait, what?
Can I have a do over?
  • Current Mood
    bored bored
. . .

vampire past self erasure dream

I had two dreams last night. One was confusing; I woke up from it all discombobulated. Then I took some time musing over a werewolf story about poison blankets and someone coming by to gloat at the victim underneath the poison blanket while the victim realized what was going on but couldn't actually get enough energy to push the blanket off. I woke up because I was too hot, in case that isn't clear.

The second dream I had was strange. There were all these very tall mountains -- I want to say the Alps? Because I think I sneered at the idea of mountains -- and then somehow was amazed to see mountains larger than the ones I lived near (in my dream, I lived -- I guess? -- in a compound right up against big mountains in California, all spine-giant-sleeping huge and riddled with caves and a fallen cowboy myth ranch, "It's a cowboy myth ranch because this cowboy never existed; it's a Hollywood dream, get it? Then a quake came and it fell and now we use it as our base for hi-tech monster-hunter stuff"). And, hm. Things happened which I don't remember, pulling the plot along, la dee da, and then there was this guy who told me about this silver-blooded blood-drinking ghost-thing, right before dying himself, and how to hunt it, and there was a woman who survived him, who was I think his twin, and she hated me so she kept disappearing into these pine forests and yelling cryptic nonsequitors at me just before I was attacked - although I figured out that this was actually helpful, because she was only doing it before I was attacked, and even later I figured out that she'd meant for me to figure that out, and THEN even LATER there was an intermission-y part of my dream involving mermaids and a sunken theatre, and then back to the main action -- well, basically, somehow, guy and chick convinced me to go back in time and the big badguy was my past self? Somehow? And I killed her, thinking she was in league with the silver-blooded ghost-monster thing, and then I realized I was surrounded by all these bowls of blood, and the original guy who'd died came back, and his mouth was all bloody, and I had a realization that I was screwed, that I'd just erased myself, and then I woke up.

Somehow, during the dream, it was very full of mystery and travel, and most of the things I had to do took me to strange places on the road -- mostly places without any people; there was even a city where, no matter what street I walked onto, it was completely empty. I remember trying to run around a corner where I could hear the sounds of daily living and such -- but when I'd get there, it would be silent. And I texted one of my friends back in California and told them what was going on, and they did some research and told me to GTFO because my shadow was being eaten or something? Straaange dream.
mischief (artist - oliver hunter)


Today received decant circle package with Valentine themed candy.

Those little candy hearts that go to powder on the tongue and have messages like Be Mine or U R Sweet? The first one I pulled out said: Core Me.

  • Current Music
    wind through eucalyptus

Among Others

It's one of those cold days that feels like standing in the surf, how at first it's a lot like ice, but then your blood starts to tingle and then it's just cool and bearable and you can focus on other things, like what you would say if theoretical selkie/merfolk kin did decide to use a riptide to drag you into drowning, and how amazing it is that moonlight on the furl of waves at night really does look like silver, like 'shining from shook foil.' I miss the beach. It's so close, but too far.

When it was morning it looked like rain any second, but now there's watery sunlight everywhere. I like it. The orange cat, who is the tomcattiest tomcat ever to Calvin around, spent most of the day curled up on my deskchair, reminding me very much of Flaming June by Lord Frederic Leighton. It's just the way he curled up and the colors, which matched the color of the book I was reading, Among Others.

Among Others is by Jo Walton, and I felt as cozy (if far, far more alert) as the girl in Flaming June looks while I was reading it. I'm not sure if this will give the proper idea, but basically, I felt like reading it was like steeping tea, plain water getting more and more colored, just transforming into this perfect rainy weather thing. I enjoyed it a lot. It is exactly a book about loving books and finding other people who love books, and it is exactly a book about growing up and being sad, and it is also exactly a book about boarding schools and teenage girl interaction and libraries being these amazing places, but mostly because of the books. It reminded me a lot of I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith and Juniper, Gentian and Rosemary by Pamela Dean, which are books I can just read without caring about getting to the end, because I like hanging out with the characters in the meantime. It also reminded me of Tam Lin -- a reverse Tam Lin, sort of. It had easy balladry. The geeky references to geeky (read: interesting) conversations about oldschool Science Fiction and Fantasy books sort of made me wistful, although in a good way, and I sort of grinned over all of the Zelazny references, and basically: this is a really good, comfortable, fun, pleasurably yearning-inducing book, and I like it, so I recommend it.

I want to say, Jo Walton (papersky) impresses the hell out of me with the range of her voice. Tooth and Claw is a book I absolutely love and reread every year (and no one's shock is greater than my own. Seriously, a book about dragons?). Farthing, Ha'Penny, etc. -- not one of these books 'sounds' like the others. It's always a surprise, but not in a What The Hell, Author, But You Wrote So Good Back In That Other Story, Augh, I Don't Love You After All way.