ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Alas, it is 21 volumes long, so not practical for me to read.  But I am happy that it exists.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 "Sport" is an episode of the very NSFW comic "Oglaf."  <3
ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
 Using biology to study folklore to study sociogeography.  I love how science sticks to itself!  This is like a hot fudge brownie delight of scientific goodness.  :D
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Based on an audience poll, this poem has been sponsored by the general fund. It is spillover from the September 1, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] mdlbear, [personal profile] peoriapeoriawhereart, and Nsfwords.


"Looming Futures"


It was during the Industrial Age,
when machine looms were common,
and Zeus had gotten bored with mortals
ignoring him and gone off with his latest conquest,

when the Moirai quietly switched to a jacquard loom
with its silken threads of Fate laid out in patterns
determined by lengthy chains of paper cards
punched full of holes to control the hooks

and Ada Lovelace suddenly thought,
What a clever idea that is.

* * *

Notes:

The Fates are also known as Moirai.

A jacquard loom is actually a type of card-commanded computer.

Ada Lovelace is the mother of computing.

ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the September 1, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] capriuni. It also fills the "welcoming" square in my 8-31-15 card for the Tones Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the November 3, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by Anthony Barrette.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I am all asquee over this bit of linguistic news that archaic words are regaining crowd appeal.  Why?  Because it's a triangulation point helping to confirm my hypothesis that the frame has popped off and English is in one of its phases of rapid evolution, like the Great Vowel Shift.  Whenever that happens, there's a big uptick in archaic resurgence because as the language retools itself, people check the attic for things that might be usable to fill gaps they're finding that inspired such a major change in the first place.  It's a time when the usual rules are suspended enough to permit drastic revisions of practice.  So you see certain words appearing and disappearing from common use, like skipping a stone across a lake, if you track them out over centuries.

*chuckle*  Slightly marred by those of us whose farmemory and taste in literature have always led us to use "alas" as an everyday word.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is something I'd been thinking about for a while, particularly after writing "The Lights Behind Us." Then we watched a performance and that cemented it. This poem also fills the "exhausted" square in my 8-31-15 card for the Tones and Voices Bingo Fest. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Granny Whammy and SPOON thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem touches on some sensitive issues. Highlight to read the details, some of which are spoilers. It contains historic references to racism, classism, and possibly also mistreatment of people with special abilities -- the results of which are fatal. Plus some other angst like floundering through a task not really suited to one's skillset and dealing with loneliness. If these are touchy topics for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward. Also, this poem is written in two parts, one set in 1955 and the other in 2013, so keep an eye on the timing.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
 Thanks to a donation from LJ user Ng_moonmoth, you can now read the first 23 verses of "The Most Powerful, Master Emotion."  This belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics and features environmental cleanup in postwar Japan.
ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
Here is today's freebie, based on prompts from [personal profile] siliconshaman and LJ user My_partner_doug.


"The Curse of the Red Baron"


It is the nature of humanity
to combat horror with humor.

Thus Charles Schulz took
Manfred von Richthofen and
pitted him against a flying beagle.

Even when the Bloody Red Baron
shot him down, Snoopy just
shook his fist at the sky and cried,
"Curse you, Red Baron!" or
"Curses, foiled again!"

Comic strips led to movies
and a series of pop songs,
continuing the adventures of
Snoopy vs. the Red Baron.

The catchy melodies spoke of
conflict and persistence and even,
in the Christmas special,
the strange chivalry of
"the knights of the air."

In the end, Snoopy finally
got his revenge and shot down
the Red Baron, only to see him
standing atop a hill, swearing
ferociously in German.

Long after World War I
has faded into history's
relentless march of battles,
the Red Baron stands out
as a vivid personage and
the curse of the skies ...

exeunt, pursued by a beagle.

* * *

Notes:

Snoopy is a cartoon beagle drawn by Charles Schulz.

The historic figure Manfred von Richthofen appeared as Snoopy's nemesis, the Red Baron.

Their combat began in comic strips such as this, followed by songs.  The Royal Guardsmen started with the lyrics for "Snoopy vs. the Red Baron" and later "The Return of the Red Baron" and "Snoopy's Christmas."

Exit, Pursued by a Bear is an entertainment trope with its roots in the Shakespeare line "Exeunt, pursued by a bear."  It is a traditional way of indicating defeat or death without actually showing dismemberment onstage.  It also belongs to the comic tradition due to the sheer incongruity, and has often been played for laughs.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 It turns out that J.R.R. Tolkien drew a lot more illustrations of Middle-Earth than previously shared.  :D
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This post has a video of Wendy Pini as Red Sonja, entering at 9:25 in the video.  Famous historic cosplay!  Today Wendy is better known as an artist of ElfQuest.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an article introducing a new species, Homo naledi.  Strong evidence suggests purposeful burial of the dead.  But what really has me squeeing is that the find contains numerous individuals of different ages and sexes.  This makes it possible to reconstruct a much clearer image of the species as a whole.  :D
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... in modern times.  Two scholars have tuned their lives to explore a historic period of mutual interest, by doing things the old-fashioned way.  It's a sweet love story as well as a clever study.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls. It was inspired by the "hobbies" square in my 8-1-15 card for the As You Like It Bingo fest. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. This poem belongs to the Granny Whammy thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem contains some intense and controversial topics. It's a little odd because much of that is not onscreen, but offset in ways that may or may not blunt the impact for readers. Highlight the warnings for more details; some of these are spoilers. Whammy Lass and a disabled veteran named Eugene work together to create more realistic war toys. The poem includes references to war experiences, amputation, PTSD and depression, period-appropriate but insensitive language, secondary graphic violence in the form of toy soldiers with explicit damage, and other challenges. Eugene makes a slow recovery and becomes more content with his life, but it remains clear that he's never going to recover everything that he lost in the war. Consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
My partner Doug tipped me to a story about finding a very old message in a bottle from a science experiment.  That reminded me about the rubber duckies, which you can see on maps like this, or here with some time stamps.

So much of science comes down to "Let's see what happens."

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