Quantum Singularity Contest!

My lovely holiday newsletter is ready to send out!

Even better, I decided to create a wishes-come-true contest to go with it (A signed copy of my poetry book to eleven lucky winners!). Details will be in my email newsletter, so sign up by using the link to the right on the widgets sidebar  (MailChimp), or go here.

Good luck in the contest!

Happy holidays, and have a lovely winter season to all my follower friends!

Ghost Stories?

 

So, as if I don’t have enough to do, I’ve been hit by the inspiration muse for my next book of poetry. At least for the overarching theme of it (like how galaxies/alternate dimensions/astrophysics/time travel was for the last book). I was thinking maybe the paranormal/unexplained/ghosts, but have the poems revolve around lost people/opportunities, especially since I have been pretty chimerical throughout my life, and a lot got jettisoned and left behind in the wake.

“I liked you the way you were. I liked your walls. I liked being the one to bring them down.” Hook, Once Upon a Time

Here’s a sample one:

The Secret Life of a Chimera

I admit,

you were one of the ones

I had little regret about

and didn’t count you

among my secrets-to-the-grave.

There was zero nostalgia there

except maybe that time

we went to another dimension

with the help of…synthpop, was it?

Whatever it was, it was a beautiful step

out of time, on that Vermont road

clean and pure and transcendental as ice

that, luckily, wasn’t also on the road.

That’s how I remember you.

I will never admit that I think about

the play you wrote that saw the

me no-one else did.

But last night, out of nowhere,

out of years bygone,

I dreamed of you,

pineapple bright,

with a unicorn heart

full of rainbow love, just for me.

And I let you hold me, prickly pineapples

and prickly me and all.

I don’t know what was more confusing

that I let you in, or that I let you go.

And I wished another impossible wish

(they’re the only kind I’m allowed)

that you were the one to break down my walls.

 

–Willow Croft

 

Black CATastrophy Writing Prompt #2

A crippling feeling gripped him in the very pit of his stomach. He knew he would never see Beckham again.

“Relax,” Tamara said. “It’s only kindergarten, he’ll be fine. Wait till we have to send him off to college.” His wife took his hand. “C’mon, I’m due in court in an hour. Sure you’ll be okay? I can have Dad come over and take you to lunch.”

“Ha, ha. Don’t worry, I have clothes to wash and floors to sweep. Oh, and don’t forget to get milk on your way home.”

“I won’t—see you at six. Love you,” Tamara let go of his hand.

“Love you.” Tim watched his son dump a pile of blocks on the carpet. He’ll be fine, he told himself as he left the classroom.

At home, he wandered from room to room. He’d lied to Tamara. The laundry was done, the floors were swept, and he’d even finished the dusting while Beckham had watched his Sunday morning cartoons. Why didn’t I play with him more yesterday, instead of having the TV babysit him?

He turned on the TV and looked for a tennis match. There was none. And the TV noise annoyed him more than the sound of his wife’s business-on-weekends phone conferences.

Milk, he decided. He went to take his car keys off the hook by the door, only to realize he was still jingling them in his hand. The noise echoed in the quiet house as he left.

He got milk last, going up each aisle and gathering everything to make Beckham’s favourite meal, spaghetti and meatballs. Tomatoes, grated cheese, pasta, ground beef, spices and herbs thrown on top of a cartful of things he didn’t need. And red wine to toast his wife’s court victory after Beckham was in bed.

On the way home, he switched “Wheels on the Bus” for a top 100 mix of artists he pretended to recognize. Beckham’s fine, and he got on the freeway instead of the back way that would take him past the school.  He merged and then typed a text to his wife: Got the milk.

…………….

Tamara knew she would win—she always did—but she was still energized as she left the courtroom.

“Congratulations, Ms. Sanders. You’ve helped yet another criminal avoid prison time.” The prosecuting attorney shook her hand a little too firmly.

Tamara hid the wince with a smile. “Thank you,” she said, resisting the urge to comment on his lunchtime happy hour. Or, more likely, his liquid breakfast.

She practically skipped to her SUV, unused to getting out of court so early. She took her phone off silent mode. She scrolled through her text messages, all business. I’m not going back to the office, she decided.  But it was the missed call from Beckman’s school that caught her attention. She began dialing the school, but another call came in. Business, she sighed, and took the call.

“Mrs. Sanders?”

“Who is this?”

“Mrs. Sanders, my name is Officer Hudson of the Boston Police Department…”

“What happened to my son?”

“Ma’am, your son was not in the vehicle your husband was driving when the accident occurred.”

He’s fine, my son is fine, she thought.

“My husband has been in an accident?”

“I’m very sorry, ma’am.”

He’s not fine.

The phone shattered against the pavement.

black-catastrophy-writing-prompt-2

https://blackcatastrophy.com/2017/08/13/black-catastrophy-writing-prompt-02/

Surreal (Slow, Sleepy, Sad, Sullen) Sunday

Today is Food Stamps day, so I have go shopping. I dread shopping. Even though I have my list handy (that I work on in the weeks in-between food stamp days), I always seem to forget something. Food Stamp Day has fallen on a weird day. It’s come after the Saturday Farmers’ Market, so I can’t get all my shopping done in one fell swoop. Poor me, right? *wry laugh* Imagine if I was a gatherer in a hunter/gatherer community. “Oh dear, I forgot to get some wild garlic. Now, I’ll have to go back out and get some.” And then I would get eaten by some fierce nocturnal animal because the garlic spot was miles away and I didn’t make it back before dark. Not that the stew wouldn’t have been burned by then, anyway.

I had a weird dream I had moved into a new apartment, but I was forgetting something (a hint of the grocery shopping day looming?) in the move. The apartment was in a European city, maybe in Germany, and I was embroiled in this undefined mystery. Plus, I was trying to get settled into my apartment community, and I kept forgetting to take stuff to my new apartment from the place I live in now. Like one of my cats. Like a bed, which I brought anyway, and then realised there was a bed already in the apartment. I was trying to get everything sorted so that I could begin my new life, but I kept screwing it up. I never did get things fixed, because I heard one of the feral cats outside and it woke me up.

I miss having a indoor cat companion so much. Although, I realise I’ve been really lucky (or smart) in the cats I picked. For the most part, they were such good kitties. They were also older cats by the time I adopted them. Everybody seems to want kittens, but I can’t imagine why. Older cats are fantastic…sweet, calm, mellow, patient, loving. Kittens can be that, too, eventually, but somebody I know just took in a kitten that showed up at their house. But they get into everything. Running all over like a demon, jumping all over you, attacking you in play nonstop. This little sucker even managed to tear off the sofa cover in about a few minutes’ time. Better them than me, seriously, as cute as the little monster is.

I am officially a fan of older, more sedate cats–the ones that so often get overlooked in shelters. Even senior cats rock! It’s so nice to have them just curl up on your lap for hours, or curl up with you at night. They embody meditation and stillness and just radiate peace and contentment. Comfort in a little purr-body.

Find your old-kitty gem at a shelter today. Or an older dog. #AdoptDontShop https://www.petfinder.com/

I mean, look at these sweet loves. How can you resist?

https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/39403911

https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/39403908

An Idle Friday

 

Today I have off from my day job. It feels idle even though I’m still technically working. Which got me thinking about the obscenely rich. Well, an idle Friday and coupled with this blog post about the absurdly wealthy from one of my favourite blogs: https://buffalotompeabodysblog3.com/2017/10/12/daily-briefing-sack-wranglers-2/.

All that wealth pooled together could be put towards the actual planet and its non-human inhabitants instead of all this silly crap they buy to show the world and each other just how much money they have. Who needs six mansions? I mean, really?

I like to think that if I were among the top 2% I would just buy something simple–a modest vintage house and fix it up (unless I got an old castle and turned it into a rescued animal mansion/shelter).

Then my 2% friends and I would use all the rest of my obscene wealth to buy up huge tracts of land (rainforest, wetlands, forests, etc.) and anything else natural we could buy and restore it to its “natural” (or, as natural as it gets) habitat to protect the threatened-with-extinction animals that live within its particular ecosystem. Or clean up the ocean of all its plastic junk, trash, and pollutants. Then we, the 2%, in between making more money, would just cruise around on the newly clean ocean in our small, dinky, but non-polluting boat, hanging out with all our non A-list fish and marine friends, on our weekend getaways.

https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/vaquita

Or something like that.

 

Now I just have to get rich. Well, before their time runs out.

 

 

Friday Wordlings…

 

I lost quite a few things during my last journey, so I’ve been retracing my steps in hopes of collecting them.

Things have just been…things.

Also, I’m afraid I’ve neglected my muse(s) as of late, but I took them on a blissfully simple summer picnic at the beach.*

I’ve been losing everything. It’s all sliding through cracks in the universe. Momentum. Focus. Dates. Stuff somebody just told me the day before. Or five minutes ago. Time goblins at work, maybe. Or I’ve gotten old in the space of a week.

In addition to the goblins that are taking up most of my brain space, I’ve had little wordlings floating around in my head. They seem significant, but that’s the curse of the creative sort. It seems wonderfully magical, or horribly prosaic. Still, I’ll put them away for safekeeping. Just in case the goblins get hungry.

a forest of ferns

endless, seething thunderstorms

ancient worlds with no humans

essence of summer

second chance to be a kid

Jurassic plants

friendly demons

scientific magic

horse guardians

a rainbow’d unkindness of ravens

*Disclaimer: This is complete fiction. I’m nowhere near a beach. Except in dreamworlds. But I’ll send you a map if you bring the picnic. Or surprise me with a new When.†

†also fiction‡

‡But also possibly real in some other dimension.

 

 

 

 

Mourning a Celebrity Childhood Friend…

 

 

Snooty the manatee has died while in captivity at the South Florida Museum.

I used to go see Snooty as a kid. I always felt sad that he was all alone in his tank at the museum. I used to daydream that I would sneak in afterhours and somehow manage to set him free. It seemed like a stark place to live, and the sounds were disorientating even to my human ears.

As an adult (90s/early 2000s), trying to be more active in animal rights causes, I had mixed feelings about visiting the museum. I had fond memories of the South Florida Museum, but I found it hard to go see Snooty in his lonely little tank.

Around 2012/2013 or so, someone I knew could get me into the museum for free, so I went. I was amazed to see that Snooty was still at the museum. But, this time, he had company. There were two other manatees (they were being rehabilitated, I believe) in the tank with him, so I felt a little better that he wasn’t all by himself.

Then I saw a post on someone’s Facebook page announcing that he had died. I figured old age, not being too knowledgeable on how long manatees lived in captivity.

But then I read the article(s). I’ll let you choose to read them for yourself, just in case you are as sensitive to animals as I am, and maybe have to steel yourself before hearing the news. Or want to avoid it altogether.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/07/24/snooty-the-manatee-dies-in-heartbreaking-accident-days-after-his-69th-birthday/?utm_term=.7abad7a7d5ee

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/07/23/538900625/snooty-the-manatee-dies-and-a-florida-community-mourns

http://www.bradenton.com/news/local/article163774463.html

I have been in mourning for gentle Snooty over the past week  few days that have felt like a week.

And been thinking a lot.

About the fact that there is less and less room for animals, plants, trees, insects, fish, or any of the other non-human lifeforms that are on this planet as well. Because we humans are taking up so much room. And that, by the time there is no more room for humans on a planet that will become uninhabitable sooner or later, there probably won’t be any non-human lifeforms left.

I read something about micro-living via the National Trust for Historic Preservation. But is it enough? Is anything enough to stop humanity’s destructive drive to fully dominate the planet?

I don’t know. I’m still trying to do everything I can to be more environmentally respectful, as futile as it feels.

I know that I miss Snooty, one of my few (make-believe?) childhood friends. If there is such a thing as reincarnation, I hope he gets to live in a better world, surrounded by freedom and clean ocean water and other manatee friends and family. And I wish the same thing for animals and plants and trees and insects that have to live on the planet with us humans. May better karma be with you in your next life.