ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the April 2016 Creative Jam. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] chanter_greenie. It also fills the "pint-sized powerhouse" square in my 4-1-16 card for the Archetypal Characters fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] technoshaman and LJ user Ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the Berettaflies and Dr. Infanta threads of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem contains some intense material. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features a mysterious note, delicate discussions between supervillains and police, explicit references to past trauma involving animal harm, traumatic stress, supervillains getting revenge by setting the cops on the Spectrum, courtship behavior in horses, discussion of conspecific but transsapient sexual activity, and other touchy stuff. However, the overall tone is positive, as folks are trying to work together in this case. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an interesting essay about the hierarchy of disability and how people abuse each other with it. 

I think about this a lot.  I have some distinct limitations, like needing glasses.  But most of mine are obscure, and I have learned that there's rarely any benefit to be had from trying to get other people to acknowledge them.  It is simpler just to wait until the damn thing blows up in their face.  "Well of course your phone died.  I told you that I kill electronics; you handed it to me anyhow; it is now a brick." "I thought it was all in your HEAD!" "That is not my problem."  So I tend not to describe myself as disabled, that being a legal category, but I can easily describe some of the limitations I have.  

Society would be much more usable if accommodations could be more often had for the asking of them.  This is not something I can change directly.  It is something I can practice, and reward.  If you're coming to my ritual, and you need to sit down, I don't need to know WHY.  I don't care why; it's none of my business.  I especially am not going to ask if you have a card for it.  All I need to know is your maximum standing time, that if the ritual runs longer we'll need chairs, and that a seated ritual would probably work better than a dance for you.  I don't need to know what's up with you; I need to know what you want me to do about it.  Because I'd like everyone to have a good time and not faceplant at my event.  Conversely, I'm alert for restaurants that are or are not accommodating of dietary needs.  Mine, someone else in my party, the total stranger whose argument I can overhear -- doesn't matter.  If you accommodate the requests with a smile, it bumps you up my "let's eat here again" list.  Ditto places where my partner and I split something and folks bring an extra plate instead of bitching or surcharging.  Fight with me or anyone else about the food, and I will not only not come back, I will pan your slop trough restaurant to my friends who also have food issues.

You get what you permit; you get what you reward.  Use your influence -- and your folding vote -- where you can.

And don't be an asshole.  
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here is a thoughtful explanation of how accessibility benefits everyone, in this case with keyboard shortcuts.  There are links to keyboard shortcuts for multiple programs.  

This interests me because of my anti-knack with technology.  I can't use most wireless tech.  I fry it.  I NEED the signal to be insulated from my potent energy field.  For example, a wireless mouse lasts ~2 weeks for me.  Laser mice also have  much shorter lifespan than ball mice.  This is one of many areas in which technology is evolving away from things I can use, and nobody cares because they like the other version better.  It's maddening.  So I have to keep an eye out for alternatives in case it becomes impossible to find equipment I can use.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
I found this article about the Marrakesh Treaty to improve accessibility of print materials.

Terramagne has one too, but it is somewhat different. I couldn't resist laying out some of those divergences. You can see how they're doing things a little faster and better. *chuckle* And what happens when a supervillain has reasons of enlightened self-interest to back the thing. ;)

Read more... )
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.

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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.

Read more... )
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.

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