icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Autumn Daybreak

Cold wind of autumn, blowing loud
At dawn, a fortnight overdue,
Jostling the doors, and tearing through
My bedroom to rejoin the cloud,
I know—for I can hear the hiss
And scrape of leaves along the floor—
How may boughs, lashed bare by this,
Will rake the cluttered sky once more.
Tardy, and somewhat south of east,
The sun will rise at length, made known
More by the meagre light increased
Than by a disk in splendour shown;
When, having but to turn my head,
Through the stripped maple I shall see,
Bleak and remembered, patched with red,
The hill all summer hid from me.

Edna St. Vincent Millay
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
North Country by Kenneth Slessor

North Country, filled with gesturing wood,
With trees that fence, like archers' volleys,
The flanks of hidden valleys
Where nothing's left to hide

But verticals and perpendiculars,
Like rain gone wooden, fixed in falling,
Or fingers blindly feeling
For what nobody cares;

Or trunks of pewter, bangled by greedy death,
Stuck with black staghorns, quietly sucking,
And trees whose boughs go seeking,
And tress like broken teeth

With smoky antlers broken in the sky;
Or trunks that lie grotesquely rigid,
Like bodies blank and wretched
After a fool's battue,

As if they've secret ways of dying here
And secret places for their anguish
When boughs at last relinquish
Their clench of blowing air

But this gaunt country, filled with mills and saws,
With butter-works and railway-stations
And public institutions,
And scornful rumps of cows,

North Country, filled with gesturing wood–
Timber's the end it gives to branches,
Cut off in cubic inches,
Dripping red with blood.
icewolf: crescent moon (crescent moon)
Iascaire is ea m’athair le ceart

Conas ná raibh a fhios againn cheana
agus diamhair na mara
chomh glé sin ina shúil?

Lá an adhlactha, iompraíonn sé
doircheacht mhoch na maidine
ar an trá sin a shíneann

ó dhoras an tséipéil
go dtí bruach an tsaoil.
Siúlann thar an slua

atá bailithe sa chlós,
a chois báite sa ghaineamh
gan cabhair a iarraidh

ó éinne dá chlann mhór mhac.
Ní thuigimid an fharraige fós,
dar leis, a cneastacht ná a racht.

Tá naomhóg an bhróin
bun os cionn ar a ghualainn
chomh dubh le fuil théachta,

an fharraige ag fiuchadh
le deora goirt
a loiscfeadh súil na gréine.

Scarann tonn na sochraide roimis
is cuireann sé a dheartháir
sa pholl atá tochailte

aige féin is an ngealaigh
ó aréir. Nuair a shiúlann
ón uaigh ar ais,

tá gile na dtonn
is uaigneas an domhain i ngleic
i súil ghlas mo shinsir.
My father is really a fisherman

How did we not know already,
when the deep mystery of the sea
shines so brightly in his eyes?

On the day of the burial, he carries
the early morning dark
on that beach that stretches

from the church door
to the edge of the world.
Walks past the crowd

that has gathered in the yard,
his feet sunk in sand,
asking no help

from any of his many sons.
We still don’t understand the sea,
he says, its kindness or its anger.

The naomhóg of sorrow
is upside down on his shoulders,
as black as clotted blood,

the ocean boiling
with salt tears
that would burn the eye of the sun.

The funeral-wave parts
and he buries his brother
in the hole

he dug up with the moon
the night before. When he walks
back from the grave,

the brightness of the sea
and the loneliness of the world
grapple in my father’s green eyes.

translated by Michael S. Begnal
icewolf: box of hearts (box of hearts)
This is a stitch. Apparently, Ovid wrote a series of poems as letters from the women of mythology to their men. This one is from Paris's first wife, the nymph Oenone...

V: Oenone to Paris

Translated by A. S. Kline

The Nymph sends words you ordered her to write,
from Mount Ida, to her Paris, though you refuse her as yours.
Will you read them? Or does your new wife forbid it?
Read! This is not a letter created by a Mycenean hand.
I, Oenone, the fountain-nymph, famous in Phrygian woods,
wounded, complain of you, who are my own if you allow it.
What god opposes my prayers with his divine will?
Might I be suffering from some crime of yours that harms me?
Whatever one deserves to suffer should be borne lightly:
what comes undeservedly, comes as bitter punishment.
You were not important as yet, when I was happy
with you as my husband, I, a nymph born of a mighty river.
You who now are a son of Priam, (let fear of the truth be absent) )
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Love's redeeming work is done;
Fought the fight, the battle won:
Lo, our Sun's eclipse is o'er!
Lo, he sets in blood no more.

Vain the sstone, the watch, the seal,
Christ has burst the gates of hell;
Death in vain forbids his rise;
Christ has opened Paradise.

Lives again our glorious King;
Where O death, is now thy sting?
Dying once, he all doth save;
Where thy victory, O grave?

Charles Wesley
icewolf: snowflake (snowflake)
Most blessed of all nights, chosen by God
to see Christ rising from the dead!

Of this night scripture says:
'The night will be as clear as day:
it will become my light, my joy.'

Te power of his holy night
dispels all evil, washes guilt away,
restores lost innocence, brings mourners joy;
it casts out hatred, brings us peace, and humbles earthly pride.

Night truly blessed when heaven is wedded to earth
and man is reconciled with God!

Therefore, heavenly Father, in the joy of this night,
receive our evening sacrifice of praise,
your Church's solemn offering.

Accept this Easter candle,
a flame divided but undimmed,
a pillar of fire that glows to the honour of God.

Let it mingle with the lights of heaven
and continue bravely burning
to dispel the darkness of this night!

May the Morning Star, which never sets find this flame still burning:
and shed his peaceful light on all mankind,
your Son who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Exsultet, Easter Vigil, The Roman Missal
icewolf: crescent moon (crescent moon)
Good Friday, 1613. Riding Westward

by John Donne

Let mans Soule be a Spheare, and then, in this,
The intelligence that moves, devotion is,
And as the other Spheares, by being growne
Subject to forraigne motion, lose their owne,
And being by others hurried every day,
Scarce in a yeare their naturall forme obey:
Pleasure or businesse, so, our Soules admit
For their first mover, and are whirld by it.
Hence is't, that I am carryed towards the West
This day, when my Soules forme bends toward the East.
There I should see a Sunne, by rising set,
And by that setting endlesse day beget;
But that Christ on this Crosse, did rise and fall,
Sinne had eternally benighted all.
Yet dare I'almost be glad, I do not see
That spectacle of too much weight for mee.
Who sees Gods face, that is selfe life, must dye;
What a death were it then to see God dye?
It made his owne Lieutenant Nature shrinke,
It made his footstoole crack, and the Sunne winke.
Could I behold those hands which span the Poles,
And tune all spheares at once peirc'd with those holes?
Could I behold that endlesse height which is
Zenith to us, and our Antipodes,
Humbled below us? or that blood which is
The seat of all our Soules, if not of his,
Made durt of dust, or that flesh which was worne
By God, for his apparell, rag'd, and torne?
If on these things I durst not looke, durst I
Upon his miserable mother cast mine eye,
Who was Gods partner here, and furnish'd thus
Halfe of that Sacrifice, which ransom'd us?
Though these things, as I ride, be from mine eye,
They'are present yet unto my memory,
For that looks towards them; and thou look'st towards mee,
O Saviour, as thou hang'st upon the tree;
I turne my backe to thee, but to receive
Corrections, till thy mercies bid thee leave.
O thinke mee worth thine anger, punish mee,
Burne off my rusts, and my deformity,
Restore thine Image, so much, by thy grace,
That thou may'st know mee, and I'll turne my face.
icewolf: snowy wolf (english language)
A Ballad of Gentleness

The firste stock-father of gentleness,
What man desireth gentle for to be,
Must follow his trace, and all his wittes dress,
Virtue to love, and vices for to flee;
For unto virtue longeth dignity,
And not the reverse, safely dare I deem,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

This firste stock was full of righteousness,
True of his word, sober, pious, and free,
Clean of his ghost, and loved business,
Against the vice of sloth, in honesty;
And, but his heir love virtue as did he,
He is not gentle, though he riche seem,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

Vice may well be heir to old richess,
But there may no man, as men may well see,
Bequeath his heir his virtuous nobless;
That is appropried to no degree,
But to the first Father in majesty,
Which makes his heire him that doth him queme,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

Geoffrey Chaucer
icewolf: amused Elizabeth Bennet (amused)
Swiped from the inimitable [personal profile] zvi :

Ask me for five things about a particular character and/or show/movie/book and I will respond with a list or a ficlet. You know the drill: "Five things Wesley wouldn't change if he could," or "Five times Neal couldn't talk his way our of trouble".

As an added bonus, I'm opening this up to my original and RPG characters as well. Have at!
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Okay, even if I didn't have a qualified psychiatrist suggesting it every time I turn around, it is enormously apparent, even to me, that I am finally surfacing from long-term, if median-level, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

The amount of energy and motivation I have had since the weather warmed up late last week is positively astounding. I want to clean, I want to organize. I don't want to waste my days sleeping. Of course, I'm still having trouble with lethargy due to budeprion (even taking it before I go to bed isn't entirely helping), but I'm actually interested enough in the outside world to make the effort to overcome it! Hell, I shaved my legs above the knee yesterday! Yay me!

I've also noticed that I'm motivated to count WW points again. The idea of leaving the house is no longer an enormous chore to be avoided at all costs (of course, Herself's increased awareness and cooperation probably play a major role in this).

There's still enough pagan in me to really feel like now is the real beginning of the year. I made some, not resolutions, but plans back in January that I just now feel equipped to implement. They look a little something like this:

·         Taking care of myself physically

o   Go to bed earlier/get more sleep

o   Climb back onto WW wagon

o   Exercise

·         Writing

o   Finish “Damage”

o   Write a chapter a month of Unmanageable

o   Blog more often (especially on my "professional" blog over on Blogger)

·         Scholarship

o   Translate at least 10 lines a month--Latin, Anglo-Saxon, German, it doesn't matter

·         Teaching

o   Get Axia feedback in on time

o   Organize files on jump drive

o   Write more lecture posts

o   Do PowerPoints for Laurel lectures

o   Get feedback to Laurel students much more quickly

·         General

o   Keep up with Franklin planner

This last one is kind of key. I remember things better when I write them down manually. I get more writing done if I sit down to a paper and pen than if I sit down to a keyboard. I know for a fact that a human being is seven times more likely to remember something if it's written down. I can't keep lurching from deadline to deadline. I have to direct my schedule--I'll be miserable if I continue to let it direct me.


Of course this will all get enormously easier come May, when Herself starts daycare two days a week. But even before that, I need to make an effort to get her out of the house as well as myself. She's a high activity kid, and now that the weather seems likely to accommodate it, she just needs room to run. Fortunately, there's a honking huge city park half a block from the house with ball fields. I'm being very careful not to use food as rewards, to not pressure her to finish meals or snacks if she's no longer hungry, but she needs to see me moving around as well. Walking, biking, exercising--it has to be seen as the norm.

I know that this seems like a lot, but I won't be trying to do it all at once. One thing I did take away from the famous FlyLady is the way to form habits, and I'll be implementing these one by one. Hopefully, I'll have enough momentum (and full-spectrum light bulbs) to carry me through next winter. Wish me luck!
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
First these two...

They've only been together 56 years, you know.

And now these two, who have only been together fourteen years, the hussies!

Seriously, the only threat gay people pose to my marriage looks something like this:

And even then, if A. (a gifted linguist, especially fluent in French) tries to steal my husband, I can run him off by making him cry when I try to pronounce au jus.

Edit: Crap, I just realized that you folks here on DW probably don't know. The cute guy with the goatee in the picture above acutally is my husband, [personal profile] torberg . This is him at our wedding reception dancing with one of my best friends from college, A.
icewolf: snowy wolf (gaming)
Well, the results have changed since the last time I took this. Kind of radically, too. Gee, you think I've had a life- and outlook-changing event in the last two years? :)

The short version is that I'm a third level Lawful Good Human Paladin/Cleric.

The Long Version )
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
The following was lifted from [ profile] theferrett It's kind of a gloomy day on the Internets, so I'm going to try to generate some cheer: Tell me about something good in your life. Leave a comment expressing something beautiful and happy that's lifting you up today. Feel free to cheer on any other commentators while you're at it.

Here, I'll start: Herself has the sniffles. This, in and of itself, is not necessarily good, but it does mean that the perpetual motion machine actually occasionally slows down. It even means that Miss Independence actually wants some cuddling, and will sit still and just be with me on the couch. We watch Sesame Street and VeggieTales Silly Songs and she'll talk to me about them in her incomprehensible toddler-speak. She occasionally chuckles. Dude, chuckles. It's awesome.

Also, I'm married 5 years today. Torberg's sick as a dog (as he actually was on our wedding day), but we're here, and we're together, and we're still an inseparable team. Yay us.

Now you tell me something lovely and enlightening. Happiness is best shared.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
I'm not polyamorous myself, but I ran across this blog recently, and I completely adore it. She's smart, funny, and pulls no punches. And she gives some really outstanding relationship advice that applies to all relationships: mono or poly, romantic or platonic.

The Polyamorous Misanthrope is kind of erratic in its update schedule, but definitely worth checking out.

Edit: Aw, my very first NSFW post. My surfing has taken me in some interesting directions this evening, and I ran across this essay. I laughed so hard I cried. Really.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Yes, I also celebrate the great state of Oregon on this day, but I ran across this on my LJ Friends List courtesy of Sihaya09, and it is just gorgeous and says everything I've been too confused and agitated to say when I'm confronted by the hard-core V-Day haters. It's also primarily what was behind my decision to start celebrating the great state of Oregon on this day about, criminy, fifteen years ago, now. I wanted to take joy in something, not tear something else down.

The writer is yuki_onna, and if you really like this, I believe she's got a web comic floating around out there.

I have never understood the desire to stomp all over Valentine's Day and snuff it out. Every year I look over my friends' list and it's a litany of "This is a fake Hallmark holiday and no one should celebrate it" and "I hate this day, who's with me?" and my personal favorite guilt trip: "If you REALLY loved your partner, you'd treat them specially every day."

I don't get it. I don't understand the fervor to destroy a holiday. To force others to see it through the same black glasses. To shame anyone who celebrates the 14th with anything other than bile, vitriol, and the occasional superior sneer.

I know that most of us were shunned on Valentine's Day in school. Believe me, my little cubby was empty, just like yours, and I yearned for a construction paper heart from boy after boy--and never got them. I understand that there is a history of trauma, and the standard geek reaction to past trauma is to organize the world so that there is no chance of that trauma re-occurring. Thus, Valentine's Day must be killed.

But here's the thing. This world is a beautiful place, but it is also often dark, and cold, and unfeeling, and life slips by, not because it is short, but because it is so difficult to hold onto. Holidays, rituals, these things demarcate the time. They remind us of the sharpness of pleasure and the nearness of death. They tell us when the sun leaves, and when it comes back. They tell us to dance and they tell us to sleep. They tell us who we are, who we have been since we lived on the savannah and hoped to taste cheetah before we died. I know we're all punk rock rebels, but the paleolithic joy of fucking in the fields and dancing around a fire doesn't go away just because certain of us would like to think we're beyond that. This world needs more holidays, not less. More ritual, the gorgeous, flexible, non-dogmatic kind that isn't about religion but about ecstasy in the sheer humanness of our bodies and souls. More chances to reach out, to sing, to love, to bedeck ourselves in ritual colors and become splendid as the year turns around.

And no, I'm sorry. It doesn't work to say "make every day special." First of all, most of you know damn well that you don't shower your partner with gifts and adoration and that most precious of things: dedicated, mindful time every day of the year. Even the best relationship is not a 24/7 orgiastic festival of plenty and perfect moments. No human can sustain it. If every day is special, none of them are. If every day is special, specialness becomes monotony. What makes days special is the time between, the anticipation of a the day, the planning, the surprises, coming together, cooking, playing, reveling in sheer time, watching the dedicated colors and rituals that wire our brain for pleasure spring up in the world to remind us that we live in it. The entire purpose of holidays is that they are a kind of otherworld we step into, full of special symbols, that informs and shapes everyday life--and some of life, no matter how some bloggers would like to deny it in their Grinchitude, is always everyday.

We celebrate the harvest. We celebrate the spring. We celebrate birthdays and death-days and the beginning of the year and the end of the year. We celebrate our parents and labor and Presidents. What in the world is so terribly wrong with celebrating love? I know not all of us have partners, but it is a rare soul who is without love of any kind. What kind of shrunken, sour heart does it take to insist that everyone else stop delighting in ritual and love? So few of us post about the magic of holidays--I think they're ashamed to. It's not cool to take unabashed pleasure in the silly and the soft-hearted.

As for the commercialism of it--well. It is commercial. So is every holiday, yet somehow we don't stomp all over Easter the way we tar and feather Valentine's Day. Valentine's Day is no more a fake holiday than any other. If I hear someone call it a Hallmark holiday I'm actually going to scream. I'm only going to say this once:

Valentine's Day, boys and girls, entered the Western mind in Chaucer's Parlement of Foules, fully-realized as a day to celebrate love via an obscure saint, with red hearts and everything. Yes, celebrated in an allegorical bird-nation, but guess what? That makes it even more awesome. I will take a holiday my buddy Geoff invented over almost any other. If I had my way, we'd start exchanging bird-themed gifts and ditch Cupid.

This is a great holiday. It's pure physical, sensual pleasure, divorced from any dogma at this point. Saint whatever. Pass the sex and food.

And as a medieval holiday, it has quite a long pedigree, thank you very much, even if you don't count in the Lupercalia (which you really shouldn't, unless wolf skins play a large part in your personal celebrations. If so, more power to you). The fact is, some human made up every single holiday there is. They're ALL fake. No one is more real or authentic than any other. At least this one was invented by a broke poet instead of a bunch of sex-starved priests. We live in a postmodern world--everything is what we make it. If Hallmark wants to force mainstream kids to buy jewelry they can't afford, they're more than welcome. I don't have to care about that, or take part in it. But I also don't have to get up on a soapbox and crush their joy in it. I know better. I know this day is an act of literature made flesh. But their world is not less valid for being Geoff-less.

And more than Geoff--think about it for a second. In the midst of winter, we are encouraged to come together and have sex (let's not be coy.) To escape the snow and ice in each others' bodies. The colors are red and rose and white--the colors of fire in the winter, of blood, of flesh, survival even in the barren times. We exchange hearts, the very vital core of our bodies. It is the last holiday before spring, to remind us that the fertile world will come again, with flowers and sweetness and love. Even surrounded by death, by blood on the snow, be it St. Valentine's blood or your own, life will win out. The traditional food is chocolate--which can be preserved through the winter and does not rot, full of sugar and fat which keep our bodies going through lean times. This holiday is as old as time: o world, even in the freezing storm, come together, make love, make children, feast, smile, and know the sun is coming soon.

Seriously, you have to stop trying to take that away. If you remove ritual from the world, you leave it greyer, and sadder, and all you have in its place is the triumph of having ruined something another person loved, which is a shallow and bitter triumph indeed. Get down off the soapbox, have a little chocolate, look out at the melting snow, and say something kind to someone you love. To be human is to take part in ritual, to demarcate the time with feasting and song and vestments and ecstasy. Life slips by, so very fast. Spend it in the practice of joy, not the destruction of it.

Happy Valentine's Day. Geoff bless us. Every one.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Herself)
Hey, all--

I need a babysitter for Herself for the morning of Thursday, February 18th. It would be from about 8 to 11:30 AM. Any takers out there? If you other moms have babysitter recommendations, please email or PM me!

icewolf: crescent moon (crescent moon)
You know how sometimes you're just having a crappy month? And you're pleading with the Guy Who Lives in the Overhead Light Fixture to give you some sort of sign that this is all worth it?

Here's the sign I got from a student tonight:

May I just say Professor, that You are the first Instructor that has shown real effort in DQ's (already in my third day of class). I really appreciate your thought and effort you have given. I have become upset and have "complained" and even have gotten very afraid of the my choice to come to an on-line college. I was frustrated about not being challenged and concerned that my effort and financial burden to join here would not be recognized in the "real world."

I am so thankful that you are taking the time and your expertise to actually challenge my thought and help me grow. I am not kissing your ass (sorry for cuss). I just want to thank you. Because of you, I might lose my 4.0 GPA and if I do (it won't be a lack of me trying!), it will be because I have more to learn. That both excites and satisfies me. Thank you for your time and effort in class.

Yeah. What I do is important. And I am damn good at it. Yeah.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
I've been sucked in again. :)

Adopt one today! Adopt one today!
icewolf: This is a very large crisis! (CRISIS!)
I would like to go to A Clockwork Greykell: Being a Victorian Ball in the Steampunk Style.

I would like to be dressed appropriately.

I would like to meet women.

Wait, no. I mean I would, especially since this event is in the city where I live, and it would be really cool to make some more local friends, but that's not what I'm aiming at.

I have a lot of costumes/garb/random clothing, but it's all pre-1500. Nothing Victorian.

Can anybody out there help me out with loaner clothing and guidence?

(PS, since I completely slaughtered the reference, and I can not seem to find the routine anywhere on the internet, you'll have to just trust me that it involves a beginner skier, and goats, and the fact that snowplowing to stop is a myth. It's hilarious. Trust me.)


icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)

August 2011

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