When I saw it first, it was a green and sleeping bud, raising itself toward the sun. Ants gathered aphids and sap around the unopened bloom. A few days later, it was a tender young flower with a pale green center, a troop of silver-grey insects climbing up and down its stalk. Over the summer this sunflower became incredibly beautiful, subtly turning its face daily, always toward the sun, its black center alive with a deep blue light, as if flint had sparked an elemental fire there, in community with rain, mineral, mountain air and sand.
As summer changed from green to yellow, new visitors came daily: lace-winged flies, bees with legs fat with pollen, grasshoppers with clattering wings and desperate hunger, and other lives too small or hidden for me to see. This plant was a society undergoing constant change, great and diverse, depending on light and moisture.
Changes also occurred in the greater world of the plant. One day, rounding a bend in the road, I encountered the disturbing sight of a dead horse, black against a hillside, eyes rolled back. Another day I was nearly lifted by a sandstorm so fierce and hot that I had to wait for it to pass before I could return home. It swept away the faded dried petals of the sunflower. Then the birds arrived to carry the seeds to the future.
In one plant in one season a drama of need and survival was enacted. Hungers were filled, insects coupled; there was escape, exhaustion and death. An outsider, I never learned the sunflower’s golden language. An old voice from gene or cell taught the plant to oppose the pull of gravity and find its way upward, to open. A certain knowing—instinct, intuition, necessity—directed the seed-bearing birds to ancestral homelands they had never seen.
There are other summons, some even more mysterious than the survival journeys of birds and insects. Once a century, among their canopy of sunlit green, all bamboo plants of a certain kind flower on the same day. Not the plants’ location, in a steamy Malaysian jungle or a suburban garden in
Sometimes you can hear the language of the earth—in water, trees, emanating from mosses, seeping through the soil. Once, in the redwood forest, I felt something like a heartbeat, a hardly perceptible current that stirred a kinship and longing in me, a dream barely remembered. Once, on a calm beach, I heard an ocean storm booming from afar, revealing the disturbance at its center, telling about the rough water that would arrive.
Tonight I watch the sky, thinking of the people who came before me and their knowledge of the placement of stars, people who watched the sun long and carefully enough to witness the angle of light that touched a stone just once a year. Without written records, they registered the passage of the gods of night, noting fine details of the world around them and immensity above them. Whichever road I follow, I walk in the land of many gods. Behind me, my ancestors say “Be still. Watch and Listen. You are the result of the love of thousands.”
An Essay. I'm not sure by whom.
According to Richard C. Cook, veteran Project Manager for the U.S. Treasury Department and Policy Analyst for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration:
"Cheap, mass-produced foods are largely based on grains and beef raised by massive agribusiness firms, so that the atrocious American diet is inextricably linked with capitalist enterprise controlled by Wall Street. A key ingredient is high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), suspected of being a major cause of diabetes and heart disease, as well as obesity. Much of the HFCS is extracted from corn grown from genetically-modified seed which has been rammed down the throats of American farmers, again by the massive agribusiness firms such as Monsanto.
"American farming at present is completely incapable of supplying nutritious foods on a scale that would make a difference. In order to furnish natural and healthy foods to poorer markets would require a revolution in American farming where small family farms using heirloom seeds and natural farming methods would once again become prosperous. Unfortunately, this sector has been destroyed by agribusiness and by the federal government policies, not to mention bank lending practices, that favor it. We also have a massive food chemical industry, closely aligned with the pharmaceutical industry, that thrives on doctoring unhealthy and non-nutritious food, with the aid of the Food and Drug Administration which approves their chemical formulas.
PIE, n. An advance agent of the reaper whose name is Indigestion. MUSTANG, n. An indocile horse of the western plains. In English society, the American wife of an English nobleman. ABORIGINIES, n. Persons of little worth found cumbering the soil of a newly discovered country. They soon cease to cumber; they fertilize. KILL, v.t. To create a vacancy without nominating a successor. APOLOGIZE, v.i. To lay the foundation for a future offence. JUSTICE, n. A commodity which is a more or less adulterated condition the State sells to the citizen as a reward for his allegiance, taxes and personal service. DAWN, n. The time when men of reason go to bed. Certain old men prefer to rise at about that time, taking a cold bath and a long walk with an empty stomach, and otherwise mortifying the flesh. They then point with pride to these practices as the cause of their sturdy health and ripe years; the truth being that they are hearty and old, not because of their habits, but in spite of them. The reason we find only robust persons doing this thing is that it has killed all the others who have tried it. DIPLOMACY, n. The patriotic art of lying for one's country. REALISM, n. The art of depicting nature as it is seem by toads. The charm suffusing a landscape painted by a mole, or a story written by a measuring-worm. REFUGE, n. Anything assuring protection to one in peril. Moses and Joshua provided six cities of refuge -- Bezer, Golan, Ramoth, Kadesh, Schekem and Hebron -- to which one who had taken life inadvertently could flee when hunted by relatives of the deceased. This admirable expedient supplied him with wholesome exercise and enabled them to enjoy the pleasures of the chase; whereby the soul of the dead man was appropriately honored by observations akin to the funeral games of
TELEPHONE, n. An invention of the devil which abrogates some of the advantages of making a disagreeable person keep his distance. TURKEY, n. A large bird whose flesh when eaten on certain religious anniversaries has the peculiar property of attesting piety and gratitude. Incidentally, it is pretty good eating. HAPPINESS, n. An agreeable sensation arising from contemplating the misery of another. HOMOEOPATHIST, n. The humorist of the medical profession. HYENA, n. A beast held in reverence by some oriental nations from its habit of frequenting at night the burial-places of the dead. But the medical student does that. SAUCE, n. The one infallible sign of civilization and enlightenment. A people with no sauces has one thousand vices; a people with one sauce has only nine hundred and ninety-nine. For every sauce invented and accepted a vice is renounced and forgiven. SCRIBBLER, n. A professional writer whose views are antagonistic to one's own. WEAKNESSES, n.pl. Certain primal powers of Tyrant Woman wherewith she holds dominion over the male of her species, binding him to the service of her will and paralyzing his rebellious energies. WINE, n. Fermented grape-juice known to the Women's Christian Union as "liquor," sometimes as "rum." Wine, madam, is God's next best gift to man. BATTLE, n. A method of untying with the teeth of a political knot that would not yield to the tongue. BRANDY, n. A cordial composed of one part thunder-and-lightning, one part remorse, two parts bloody murder, one part death-hell-and-the- grave and four parts clarified Satan. Dose, a headful all the time. Brandy is said by Dr. Johnson to be the drink of heroes. Only a hero will venture to drink it.
VoilÃ! In view, a humble vaudevillian veteran, cast vicariously as both victim and villain by the vicissitudes of Fate. This visage, no mere veneer of vanity, is it vestige of the vox populi, now vacant, vanished, as the once vital voice of the verisimilitude now venerates what they once vilified. However, this valorous visitation of a by-gone vexation, stands vivified, and has vowed to vanquish these venal and virulent vermin van-guarding vice and vouchsafing the violently vicious and voracious violation of volition. The only verdict is vengeance; a vendetta, held as a votive, not in vain, for the value and veracity of such shall one day vindicate the vigilant and the virtuous. Verily, this vichyssoise of verbiage veers most verbose vis-Ã-vis an introduction, and so it is my very good honor to meet you and you may call me V.
1. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, and find line 4.
The greatest Christmas present ever: The Voyage of the Beagle
'...colder climate, the greater part would be absorbed or...'
2. Stretch your left arm out as far as you can.
3.What is the last thing you watched on TV?
CSI: Miami. David Caruso is fuckin' Hot.
4.Without looking, guess what time it is:
5.Now look at the clock. What is the actual time?
6.With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?
Weiners scratching at the door.
7.When did you last step outside? What were you doing?
Three minutes ago I went out for a smoke.
8.Before you started this survey, what did you look at?
A role-play that's turned rather... interesting.
9.What are you wearing?
My painted-splotched hoodie and torn up jeans.
10.Did you dream last night?
I don't think so.
11. When did you last laugh?
I really don't know. I think it was a Family Guy comment or something.
12. What is on the walls of the room you are in?
Scarface. Freshwater Aquarium fish. Vice City map. More Scarface. Marilyn Manson.
13. Seen anything weird lately?
I don't think so, no.
14. What do you think of this quiz?
I haven't done one of these in forever... Gods know why I'm doin' it now.
15. What is the last film you saw?
Batman Begins. Just bought it from Blockbuster.
16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy?
Shrooms. Shrooms, Shrooms, and more Shrooms. And once my third-eye is squeegeed clean, I'd be buyin' congressman by the baker's dozen.
17. Tell me something about you that I don't know.
I sing in the shower. Incessantly.
18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?
I'd have every weatherman shot on the spot.
19. Do you like to dance?
Really needs to replace his puppet strings with fishing line. It's ashame they're visible at the State of the Union address on TV.
21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her?
22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him?
23. Would you ever consider living abroad?
Consider? Darlings, I plan to.
24. What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gates?
I'd like him to tell me what exactly is in those li'l Juan burritos for .30cents a piece.
25. 4 people who must also do this meme in THEIR journal:
Meh. Their choice.
Hello, friend. It's been entirely too long, hasn't it? I think of you often, and know that you're in my most heart-felt prayers. I would say I worry for you, but I can't say I do because in my heart I know you'll be fine, no matter what. We are talking about you afterall.My head is throbbing, but Muse is a cruel master and had his macabre wish in writing this.
The eternal nomad. So how goes life these days? Is it sweet, darling?
I hear horror stories of you, friend. These fables, they're vicious -- almost unimaginable, especially from the likes of you. I know that every legend must have a beginning and every urban ghost story must have some truth. But how much is true, love? I realize the best intent can tear people to shreds but surely you were never that naive, were you? As creature so much like me I feel your adoration of people, I know it, loathe it. But it's enrapturing having this person for a few hours, just a couple. I love how the mindlessly rattled on and on about whatever struck their fancy. I remember you that way as well, ignorant of what they're saying -- you're just thrilled to be hearing. You always wanted to attatch to someone, anyone, but it is our nature to leech and ride that person as long as it takes to get out of them what we want. Or need, as the case may be. Call it by whatever name, m'dear, maybe it's ugly. But okay, the world is an ugly place.
I don't worry for you. No, not anymore.
We should walk once again through the desert wastes. We should frolick -- consumed by the pain of painlessness itself. You remember those sojourns, don't you? I do. It was but a day away and now tomorrow never comes. I still go to the park, I still trot the boardwalks and search the brothels. But now you are nowhere to be found, nowhere and everywhere. I tore apart a young woman of eighteen last week who had your hair colour and your lipstick, but how lacked your mouth and rich smell. It made me sick. I still can't be rid of the smell of her cigarettes from my hair or the rot in my loin, very much in the same way I can't be rid of you.
You were beautiful once, friend. And I hope you still are. Perhaps I cannot find you because you've found a way out and have taken flight to whatever oblivion that might await you. Perhaps you have escaped, gone somewhere I can't follow. Well, not yet at least. Give me time. Let the filthy muck of this world cake about me until it's so heavy it breaks apart and falls off. Let it. Let the leeches feed until they're so fat their serrated teeth can't stay lodged any longer.
I can't seem to find words anymore for you. Or myself, I'm beginning to surmise these days. Mayhaps if I was a poet you could tell me what's killing me.
I think of you a lot. I always used to and then it faded, but now you're all I ever wonder about. You're damaged but invincible. Ugly, but oh so radiant. It was your words that were a million points of light, not your eyes or your hair or your glitter. Your words, m'love, could've saved me. Your words deflated me, folded me up and placed me on a shelf for private exhibition and depraved use. But the eternal nomad has no shelf, she has no home. Forever fleeing, forever settling you're the worst one I could've ever latched onto. And somehow the best.
I hope I didn't hurt you. I pray I didn't fuck you up. For so long you fought to make your mind your own until finally you had to rip it from my bloody-knuckled grasp.
I think now that I do not worry for you because I worry for me. You've realized you have to be rid of these leeches, you had to scrape them off, to crushed them against rocks. Without their weight, m'friend, perhaps your wings will carry you from here unto infinity. Without me, you'll fly.
|Leather & Lace
Not much to say about this other than after four days spent with Ash, it was about time for some creative venting between the two of us. A new style, granted, and yes I know Thane's eyes seem set too far up on her forehead and her nose seems too big -- but I rather like it, really. A lot of detail, a rather relaxing doodle.
This image took quite a bit longer to complete but I daresay I'm satisfied with its results. After such a long dry-spell, it's wonderful to draw Thane again. References used.
New layout for image posting... I think I rather like it, really. New technique, new display style... what else will my software surprise me with?! Anywhore, onto the image. Autumn fe Masiln poses rather prettily for us all in this rendition. She's a merchant, here, as the li'l clever text entails. I honestly think this is my favorite time-period for my age-old fantasy endeavour. Lots of fun accessories... <3 Digitally inked off of a really old sketch for thirteen
Autumn fe Masiln - (c)2005 Amanda Lee Harig
|Ibdol of Amarante
Spent like, eleven hours on this one. *collapse* Same character as this hand-breaking painting and just as meticulous as before. Old sketch, digital inking, some patterns/fill-ins that I adopted from croaky as an experiment but not without some beautiful results. She seems a bit docile in this one, though, but the pose was too much to just ignore. Veddy, veddy nice.
Ibdol of Amarante - (c)2005 Amanda Lee Harig