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* My paid journal expires in five days and I've been keeping an eye on the countdown....this morning I decided to chuck $5 at LJ for another two months....but I don't know anymore what I'm doing or where or when or even how. I cannot stand the ads and I do want to support a platform that has been so incredibly important to me these past fifteen years...and yet.

* Still not writing. Even this small bit of typing is giving me anxiety. I feel completely unmoored and adrift.

* I did finish Deep Survival and can recommend that highly. I'm reading so much poetry. And it helps. I do believe that in trauma, the human animal craves universal symbolism; meaning that resonates in a psychic well so deep there is no bottom to it, so filled with amniotic sea water that it cannot be drunk but must be immersed in. Poetry offers this.

The holiest of all holidays are those
Kept by ourselves in silence and apart;
The secret anniversaries of the heart

* My father and I shared all the same shows, so no Vikings for me. But D and I did decide to finish Peaky Blinders a few weeks back and although I was left thinking, damn, Dad's never going to know how batshit crazy THAT got, I was happy I stuck with it because it was gloriously done. We are watching Portlandia now because laughing.

* My "difficult" sister and I are working together to help my mother. I spend half the week at her home, and A spends the other half. I actually stay the nights, but A has small children and can only spend the days. Some of those nights I've gotten a distraught phone call from my mom and have had to barrel down the hill to stay with her. Terrible. We are waiting for Arlington to contact her about the interment and I'm hoping that will be another healing salve. I don't know.

* I don't know anything anymore and its a wonderment to me that I ever believed I knew a single damned thing. Hubris.

* I've been wearing these plaid jeans everytime I go out. Current Elliott Soho Stiletto. They cheer me up and I love them.

* I think of all of you and hope that each one of you is well and happy!
Five weeks ago yesterday. Goodbye 2017. I can't imagine what 2018 will bring. Because I really can't remember what it's like to be casually happy. I'm worried about my mother and broken-heart syndrome. I feel broken. It's a weird feeling. The world has become a darker place. I haven't listened to a moment's worth of music in five weeks. I used to listen to music four to five hours a day.

I don't want to dampen joyful spirits with my sadness. But I thought I should check in. I have a small feeling of hope that I could return here sometime soon and revive some old ways. I don't know.

I turned down the editor job. I think I may volunteer with Wreaths Across America in honour of my father. I can't write, so I'm not even thinking about words, but they keep scrolling across my mind and I keep refusing to read them.

I had a dream Friday night that I decided to surprise my family at my niece's wedding last Saturday in upstate New York. In the dream I was in the foyer of the lodge in which the wedding was taking place, the ceremony had finished and I was waiting to walk into the reception and surprise everyone. I was standing next to my father who was waiting patiently with me, a smile on his face, and I was thinking to myself, oh, how surprised everyone is going to be when Dad and I walk through these doors....

I am thinking of all of you. Happy New Year. I wish you all the best of everything!

checking in

* Cemetery meeting this morning and I'm not sure how much more of volunteers I can handle. It literally is herding cats. There is a proposal on the agenda to CLOSE the cemetery. Like what? The treasurer apparently has chosen to simply not file taxes or pay taxes or gods knows what for the past five years and last month she showed up on the sexton's doorstep, dropped off all the paperwork she had, with a resignation letter, and hightailed it away before he could say a word. We have had our non-profit exemption revoked. He is overwhelmed and wants to lock the gates and put the entire thing on ice, but this is a CEMETERY. Human remains in perpetuity. I just can't with this attitude. I will fight to fix this, but I could be outvoted by old timers who have lost the ability to care.

* I had a dinner meeting with the publisher of the parent magazine I've been copy-editing for, and yep, she offered me the Editor position. It's lucrative....but deadlines. I don't know. D and I are discussing the implications of this on my already pretty-full week of work. When he needs me, he needs me to be able to research, invoice, bid in short order. But a print run magazine also needs things to be done within time frames that simply are not flexible. Decisions!

* Family is arriving tomorrow and Tuesday and Wednesday. It's a busy week. Tuesday is our day to host and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for good weather so that the guys can take folks four-wheeling. It's been raining pretty much non-stop here. We have a break today, but storms are a'coming. And it's COLD so maybe we will get some Thanksgiving snow. All of these peeps are from upstate NY, so they are used to weather, but we really want to entertain them outside in the woods.

* I'm reading a ton of poetry. Currently having a mad love thing for Robinson Jeffers.
* I know, I know. I've been ABSENT. And I truly have no idea why. It's just been this overwhelming feeling of ennui where livejournal is concerned. And writing. I was more concerned a few weeks ago, but now I am chalking it up to a cyclic type of thing coupled with a general sense that LJ is a muddy rut in which I've been feeling a bit stuck. I know some of you are feeling that way, too, and there simply seems to be nothing we can do to pull ourselves or one another out. Anyway. I'm fine. Family is fine. Life is good. I sincerely hope the same for all of you.

* The holidays are rapidly approaching and I've got a calendar-full of things I need to prepare for and participate in. This isn't a bad thing, but it is quite distracting. Mayhap, I am in need of distraction? I'm going to go with that until the New Year. And then RESOLUTIONS.

* Sculpting is going very, very well and I'm enjoying/dreading it. That's a positive combination for me. Keeps me on my toes, creatively speaking. I'm working on a series I've titled "Whimsical Memento Mori". I think one of my 2018 resolutions is going to be putting together a smallish studio up here. There is so much community down at the studio in town that I cannot hear myself think.

* Wrote a Persephone/Hades comment fic in a quick fit of "just effin do this thing with your fingers" and here it is -

Any, any, what have you done to me?! (Victim)

You watch her, in ways you have never watched anyone before, living or dead. She is promised goddess to your godhood and in all the aeons of your life you had not known what this would be, what it would feel and sound and taste and look like. You realize now that you, too, were a shade, a shadow cast in darkness while the light shone above, shone on her, shone because of her, she took great handfuls of the light and wove it into her hair, dusted her nude shoulders with it, and swallowed it so that it broke inside her body and reflected out of her eyes.

You had opened the earth with your bare hands, dug out from the grave, emerging into a meadow of long grasses and flowers blooming open like a secret revealed, open open open. You want to shred them with your teeth, trample them beneath your feet.

Yet there she was, a crown of daisies, standing startled the girl deer, the untried doe. You could see she was going to bolt and the moments between you narrowed to an unbreakable filament and you used that to tie her tight against your body so that you could pull her back down into the ground with you. And that’s what you did. Exactly what you did.

But now you are the captured.

She shrugged off the coil you had bound her with, stood with all that sunlight leaking out of her, dripping off the long ends of her hair, tears refracting and falling from her eyes, but her mouth, her beautiful lips set in a firm unbroken line as she studied you and this dismal hell of a kingdom you had inherited. She found it wanting. You knew that. The dark abyss of it, the rivers of poisoned water, the black void you called a sea a ribbon on the horizon. The boatkeeper, the three-headed dog, the Moon herself bent and babushka-ed, and the endless wandering souls. It was not her mother’s domain and you have to be stoic to keep from falling at her feet, arms wrapped around her knees, and begging her. To what? Stay with you. The words are bitter on your tongue and you spit them into your palm. Please please please. You extend your hand and she scoops these seeds of supplication, the arils of desire, out with her fingers and thumb and feeds them between her lips.

* Watching - not a damned thing. Reading - nonfiction. Dreaming - vivid and detailed.

* Still loving this kid -

* What a great flist-y turnout over at comment_fic! We are still going strong over there. Today with prompts for The Veil. I know the prompts seem so similar and it might be a bit of a stretch to explore such deeply human, deeply mystical subjects through fandom and short fic, but I've seen some great prompts and wonderful responses! Join us!

* How's NaNo Day 1 going for those of you writing?

* I need to circle back and close the discussion on "IT" over at pathos_horror. And I'll let you all know what book we choose next!

* Sculpting class is going great. Had a wonderful heart-to-heart with the instructor yesterday and he really understands what my current concerns are and where I would like to go with this return to clay. He's an amazing guy and a truly gifted artist. What I need to do, my homework for this weekend, is to create some sketches, some ideas for a "study" that I can spend the next two months on. And this time I'm going to use armature rather than the method he has taught me. I have a few ideas, just need to firm them up. Also, I met a wonderful artist yesterday who hasn't been to the studio in a long time for health reasons. She's an albino and slightly homeless but seems to be getting back on her feet and what a source of information and inspiration. She sculpts stylized animals...and is the first figurative sculptor I've met at the studio.

* I know everyone is WRITING, so back to it!

don't walk away

* Inspired by swirlsofblue, I'm hosting prompts over at comment_fic this week!!! Focusing on a Samhain theme because of course! Come play!

* I'm feeling scattered which is unusual for me at this time of year. I'm ready to descend and yet there's a lot going on with various folks. My family, Kidling1, Kidling2's gf's family. Much of it has to do with health and ageing and neediness. Ultimately, I'm feeling a change in myself, in how I'm dealing with all these strings being tugged on, how I can feel aspects of my personality altering in order to accomadate this phasal shift in my life because of these shifts in the lives of others.

* TV is a current wasteland. I woudl rather mainline Riverdale than watch it weekly, so there's that. The Mist was cringe-worthy, so we stopped. Mindhunter was grotesque, so we dropped that. Based on ryl's gushing, we did queue up Twin Peaks last night and boy-howdy THAT is something! I'm wary of it because I know it was cancelled (although maybe that was Lynch's intention all along) and I am familiar with so many of the memes, but this show! So Lynchian and really...when we say that The Sopranos was seminal in serialized TV....I think I might counter that argument by just pointing wildly at Twin Peaks. I can tell this is going to be quite the ride.

* Reading Deep Survival and I cannot recommend this book enough. Gorgeous liteary non-fiction. Especially for those who venture into nature, but I think for any who want to examine their own reactions to emergency situations and ponder how they might react better. Or anyone who simply is drawn to the human animal in extreme conditions. It's a well-researched and well-presented analysis of the human brain, both in evolutionary terms but also in current cultural adjustments. READ THIS!

* Still don't have anything tangible enough to hang NaNo on. I think I'm just going to try to tap into the universal energy of the thing and write and see what comes out of the ends of my fingerbones.

hold gently what you wish to grow old with

* Had one of those dreams last night, the one where you find an extra room in your house and you're wriggling with excitement and POTENTIAL. In the dream I decided I was going to dedicate the space to (another) library. Also, the room was discovered because children were growing and moving out of the house, the children were my two young nieces. In these dreams the door is always a secret, hidden thing, and in this case it was inside a bedroom closet.

* A show of hands - how many of you know Shirley Jackson's (QUEEN!) unbelievable "We Have Always Lived In the Castle"? OMG!!! How have I never ever read this before???

* I finished "13 Reasons Why" last night. And it was hard and sad. I think it was simultaneously successful and a failure. I don't understand the overuse of Ian's Joy Division....and the other 80's tunes....I still maintain that this show is about dialogue and needs to be watched together with young people. In a culture where we are currently embroiled in seeing a divide between races, I wonder if the divide between sexes might not be the more important discussion...

* Finishing a second bust at the studio. Next time, I do it my way. I've learned a lot during this class, but this technique is nothing but frustrating for me. Still, I'm not complaining, just reminding. I will try to remember my phone next week so that I can take some pictures. I guess....I need to decide which way the goat-footed Muse wants to stroll. 3D or 2D. It's all tangling up inside of me right now. I'm feeling unmoored, to say the least. Autumn is ALWAYS my creative time, so I really need to focus here. Maybe NaNo will help me navigate.

I love how genre stations can always introduce you to new-to-you artists. This guy, for example -

there's a silver stream laid across the sky

* Beginning to ponder NaNo more seriously now. Head like a hive with all the buzzing and the trick will be to hone in on a particular idea. Or...a collection of particular ideas. I have a working title of "Letheon" and that feels like a small accomplishment. Heh. Shop Talk postings soon!

* Other than that, things are in a stasis type of place. Autumn is busy outside the doors and it's gorgeous. I'm reading books about writing rather than fiction. I'm watching silly Halloween-themed movies because that's what The Viking wants to do in the evenings so that he can fall asleep in his chair beside the woodstove. Taking long walks and trying to declutter. The fires have opened up good donation centers since so many have lost everything.

* I'm also casually playing around with two fanficcy things. The Originals and The Civil Wars. Nothing is really gelling yet, but I'm getting words down on paper.

* And that's it. What are you all up to?

this post brought to you by LJ scrapbook


My hair is long enough now for milkmaid braids. My favourite hairstyle! I'm still committed to growing my hair out long, long, long and so far so good.


I wrote a poem titled "An American In Paris"


Convo has been good but sporadic over at pathos_horror. I think I will post my summation thoughts this week.


We have a small herd of deer on the property. Here are the twin fawns on the berm behind the poolhouse. We used all the dirt taken out of the hole when we dug the pool to build a berm. The deer live behind that berm.

* Thanks for the suggestions for NaNo! I'm feeling a small spark! Keep them coming, if you have any more ideas! I'm going to begin pre-NaNo posting this coming week!

* 13 Reasons Why is hard. But I think it's worthwhile. I think it should be required in all high school health classes.