ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This is a freebie for Blogging Against Disablism Day. An audience poll has selected the poem "Void of Course" from The Moon Door as today's celebration of access and representation for people with disabilities. This poem is spillover from the January 19, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] technoshaman and LJ user Lb_lee. It also fills the "mutation / physical transformation" square in my 5-18-15 card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo fest.

Note: There is some squabbling in this poem, because people have different opinions about how to solve problems. It's inevitable in any group, but more common in support groups where folks are perpetually low on spoons. Happily the group has ways of handling this.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I found this post about accommodations (from Blogging Against Disablism Day) very helpful in thinking about ways to make the arts more accessible for everyone. Not mentioned is the fact that many of these ideas would also make art more accessible for small children, who also need frequent potty breaks and want to touch everything.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I have posted a poll for a free poem on my LiveJournal, for Blogging Against Disablism Day.  If you're not on LJ, you can vote in a comment.
ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
This is the freebie for the April 2016 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by a prompt from LJ user Ng_moonmoth. It also fills the "cannon fodder" square in my 1-4-16 card for the [community profile] trope_bingo fest.

Warning:  This poem is all about oppression and resistance.  It includes graphic violence and other uncomfortable imagery.  But on the whole it is very, very subversive.  Please consider your tastes and headspace before deciding whether it's something you want to read.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by Anthony Barrette. Read about the four boxes of liberty.


"Four Boxes"


The political process and
the revolutionary process are
really part of the same spectrum,

the way electricity and magnetism
combine into electromagnetism.

A free society rests on four boxes --
the soap box, the ballot box,
the jury box, and the ammo box --
to be used in that order.

The political portion relies on
the ballot box and the jury box,
for changing society from within;
the revolutionary portion relies on
the soap box and the ammo box,
for changing society from without; but
they are all part of the same boxing match.

It is the citizen's duty to understand
which box to use, and when.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by Shirley Barrette.


"The Right People"


Get enough people to vote,
and everything will be fine.

This is politics; this is history.

It is the argument behind
everything from voter drives
to campaign promises

It is true as far as it goes --
people working together can
accomplish tremendous things --
but here is where it breaks down.

Get enough people to vote,
and everything will be fine.
Of course, the "right people"
are the ones I  want.

That's the part that
they can never agree on.


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "changing society from within." I'll be soliciting ideas for activists, politicians, extroverts, social engineers, diplomats, QUILTBAG people, teachers, visionaries, alternative families, protesting, planning ahead, storytelling, identifying problems, solving problems, helping people, challenging assumptions, peacemongering, capital cities, protest zones, colleges, libraries, planned neighborhoods, community centers, parks, tikkun olam, radical transformation, the master's tools and the master's house, teamwork, de-escalation, conflict resolution, alternative justice, hope, and poetic forms in particular.

I have a linkback poem, "The Texture of Our Relationships" (16 verses, Polychrome Heroics). 

If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week.  (If you're not available that day, or you live in a time zone that makes it hard to reach me, you can leave advance prompts.  I am now.)  Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog. 

New to the fishbowl? Read all about it! )

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "changing society from within." I'll be soliciting ideas for activists, politicians, extroverts, social engineers, diplomats, QUILTBAG people, teachers, visionaries, alternative families, protesting, planning ahead, storytelling, identifying problems, solving problems, helping people, challenging assumptions, peacemongering, capital cities, protest zones, colleges, libraries, planned neighborhoods, community centers, parks, tikkun olam, radical transformation, the master's tools and the master's house, teamwork, de-escalation, conflict resolution, alternative justice, hope, and poetic forms in particular.

I have a linkback poem, "The Texture of Our Relationships" (16 verses, Polychrome Heroics). 

If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week.  (If you're not available that day, or you live in a time zone that makes it hard to reach me, you can leave advance prompts.  I am now.)  Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog. 

New to the fishbowl?  Read all about it! )

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (neutral)
Illinois is holding its primary election.  Here is some information about issues and presidential candidates.

If you're voting today, make an "I voted" comment and you can reveal a verse of any unfinished linkback poem.  If you've already voted in your state's primary, then tell me to claim a verse.

The following poems have verses left to reveal.  When you comment with your voting claim, let me know which poem you want to extend.
"To Choose a Direction"
"Unfamiliar Feelings"
"From Silica to Silk"

"Knitting into Community" NOW COMPLETE
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... to communicate with people, you have to speak their language.  Sometimes that language constitutes waving a fist in their face.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the June 2, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] chanter_greenie. It also fills the "nurture self-worth" square in my 5-20-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by EdorFaus. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: References to past mayhem, body image issues, and offscreen intolerance.  Current environment is safe.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I was heartened to see this post about soldiers and veterans speaking out in support of Muslim Americans

Me, I'm not a soldier in this life.  But I still don't like bullies, and terrorists are bullies.  (Different thing from being a freedom fighter: it depends on your aim.)  So yes, I still have that habit of putting myself between other people and danger.  I've faced off against abusive partners (both sexes) and abusive teachers and dealt with car wrecks and whatnot.  And I try very hard to make my little corner of the world a safe space for everyone.  Somebody gets on my site and acts like a douche?  I will protect you.  Chances are if it's early morning and I'm asleep, my other fans will jump in and ask them to cool it.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an article about Bernie Sanders and race relations.  This quote caught my eye:

“I have never, ever seen a person running for president come through here. Not one time,” he said. “At first, I wondered if he is just trying to get the black vote. But I did some research and found out he fought a lot for civil rights, and even marched at one time with Martin Luther King. I never knew that. And in his speeches, he says, ‘Yes, black lives do matter.'”

So here's this white Jewish dude, he's not black, his state is mostly white ... but he's got some roots in equality activism, and one more thing.  You wave a problem in his face, he doesn't ignore it.  He goes out and gets some goddamn experience.  Maybe it's not a lot yet, but when was the last time you saw a politician respond  to a protest with anything other than "Stop whining?"  He's talking with people who know this shit.  He's going into their neighborhoods to see where this shit happened.  That matters.

That more than any speech says, in footsteps, black lives matter.  At least to him.  Because he'll go out of his way to look at a problem that is not, personally, his problem.

This is what makes activism work, when people acknowledge problems and look for solutions, and then it doesn't have  to reach riot proportions, because you're already addressing the issue.

That's leadership.  That's power.  And whether or not it goes where I hope it does, I'm happy to see it.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
So here is how Charles Schulz dealt with racism.

1) When someone else pointed out the problem, he agreed that it was a problem.

2) He then admitted he had no idea how to fix it without making it worse; he lacked relevant experience and information, and really did not want to screw it up.

3) So the lady asked her friends who did have relevant experience.

4) One of them suggested introducing supernumerary characters -- background roles -- as a way of laying groundwork for a regular character later on.

5) And he did that.  And it worked.

Believe that you can make a difference.  If you aren't sure how, say so and seek further input from useful sources. Understand that if you're an artist, you'll never know most of the times you make an impact in somebody's life.  But every so occasionally, someone will tell you that you have, and that's awesome.

So go save the world, it needs saving.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Brazil is encouraging people to read by treating books as subway tickets.  Surely someone must be doing this in Terramagne!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 This project aims to make Legos more inclusive with a holiday-and-magic themed set including minifigs in wheelchairs.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an intersting post about teaching diversity. It's good as far as it goes. But it's missing a piece, and that missing piece lies at the heart of what's wrong with diversity today.


Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This demifiction belongs to the Berettaflies thread of the Polychrome Heroics series. It takes place on Day 7. Technically, the authorities would prefer that people stay at home while the threat level is at Red, but it's about to turn Orange the next day. Given a peaceful indoor vigil, they'd really rather not plug that safety valve and risk something really dangerous happening instead.

Read more... )

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