ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I found this documentary about homelessness in Anchorage, which is one of the worst places in the world to be homeless due to environmental hazards.  They have some social services that try to buffer the dangers, but a lot of people still die.

The first solution to homelessness is simply to put people in homes.  Society needs to guarantee people a place to stay, if it doesn't want them camping out and perhaps freezing to death.  Shelters don't count, and neither does any other kind of monitored living.  Those interventions drive people away from help.  They need their own apartment or house with the same freedoms and dignities as everyone else.

The second main thing the homeless need is income.  That means jobs for those who can work, which is a lot of them; or some kind of public assistance for those who can't work.  This is much cheaper than leaving them on the street to subsist through begging, stealing, or emergency services.

The third thing they need is resources.  That includes everything from supplies to health care.  Most homeless aid focuses on very small, short-term things like food or emergency medical care.  That might keep people from dying right in front of you but it does not solve the problem.  You have to make it possible for them to build up the components of a healthy life.

And you have to do all this in ways that the homeless population will find attractive because it meets their needs, and not shy away from due to strings attached.  People don't risk death from exposure for no reason.  If they're sleeping in the snow, it is because there are not enough shelters and/or those places are literally worse than death.

It's something I write about, periodically, because some of my characters are homeless.  Danso and his family were homeless for months.  Turq has been on the street even longer, and it's hard for him to accept help even when the offerings are safe and not judgmental.  So I keep an eye out for ways to address these kinds of problems.  How do you meet the emergency needs, how do you give people a route back into society, how do you get people back into homes, and especially how do you fix the root causes that drive people into homelessness in the first place?  Solutions exist, a few places are using them, but most just can't be arsed.
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 [personal profile] technoshaman sponsored the remaining verses, so you can now read "Bearers of Witness with Justice" in full.  Watch the Japanese whalers get theirs.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
The audience poll routed $18.75 into "Bearers of Witness with Justice," which now has 10 new verses.  Enjoy a discussion of compassion, and prayer time.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, October 4, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "monsters." I'll be soliciting ideas for werewolves, vampires, mad scientists, Frankenstein's creature, dragons, chimerae, sea monsters, mythical beasts, lovable monsters, heraldic beasts, the misunderstood, monsters as disability pride, outcasts, nemeses, bullies, abusers, oppressors, slavers, psycho bosses, troubled relationships, supervillains, superheroes, monster hunters, fleeing in terror, questing for the beast, fighting monsters, resisting oppression, facing your demons, feeding the right wolf, genetic engineering, lairs, lonely mountains, the forest primeval, the dark, oceans, liminal zones, mad science labs, government buildings, The Tower, battlegrounds, graveyards, other mysterious areas, preternatural biology, special weapons, unusual vulnerabilities, radical transformation, wings, tails, horns, scale, fur, tentacles, the moon, cthonic symbolism, the unspeakable, the inescapable, the indestructable, things man was not meant to know, the nature of humanity (or lack thereof), what makes a monster, when the monsters are scared of the humans, hubris, and poetic forms in particular.

I have a linkback poem, "E Meglio Star Solo" (14 verses, Fiorenza the Wisewoman). 

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: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the August 2, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by the "gathering courage" square in my 8-1-16 card for the Survival Bingo fest. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. This poem belongs to the Officer Pink thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
I have posted a general fund poll for $18.75 into open epics, left over from the half-price sale in The Moon Door.  If you're not on LiveJournal you can vote in a comment.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the August 2, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] ari_the_dodecahedron, [personal profile] alatefeline, and [personal profile] helgatwb. It also fills the "discovery" square in my 8-1-16 card for the Survival Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Shiv thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the April 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] alexseanchai. It also fills "the Patriarch" square in my 4-1-16 card for the Archetypal Characters Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Antimatter & Stalwart Stan thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the July 5, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] ari_the_dodecahedron. It also fills the "Identify a feeling you're having" square in my 5-1-16 card for the Solo Celebration Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony and Shirley Barrette. It belongs to The Moon Door series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Here's a good writeup about the TV series Black Sails.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the January 19, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer and [personal profile] redsixwing. It also fills the "left brain / right brain" square in my 10-2-15 card for the [community profile] ladiesbingo fest, and the "amnesia" square in my 9-4-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [livejournal.com profile] book_worm5 and[livejournal.com profile] ng_moonmoth. It belongs to The Moon Door series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the April 2016 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It has been inspired by the "shapeshifter" square in my 4-1-16 card for the Archetypal Characters Bingo fest. It was sponsored by Janet Miles. This poem belongs to The Moon Door series.

Warning: This poem has some intense content. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It includes messy medical details, intrusive ideation, debates over the usefulness and safety of drugs, references to past self-injury and sexual abuse, depression, and other challenges. Current environment is safe and supportive. 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)
While researching park sizes for Terramagne, I stumbled across a cogent analysis of why T-American towns have so much more money to spend on awesome facilities and services when compared to those in local-America. It's the value per acre.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
 [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has posted the story "Reflections" in which Bennett talks to someone about domestic violence.  Things are rarely as simple as they seem.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
 [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has finished "Repercussions" with part 7.  Find out who's behind the bank robbery.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Someone asked me about resources for building community. This is a favorite topic of mine.

The most important thing is to start by identifying values. Usually individuals and groups will have some different and some common values. Begin building on common ground. Use that to lay out shared interests and goals. Then make plans to pursue those. Where these factors diverge but are compatible, individuals or groups can take responsibility for developing different projects so as to create a more diverse community. Especially, use community values to set priorities, settle conflicts, and make decisions between different possible options.

Here are some resources ...

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
The new monitor and mouse have been installed, so my computer is working normally now.  I'm striving to catch up with backlog.

Thanks to assorted donations, including some nice big chunks from [livejournal.com profile] ng_moonmoth and smaller tidbits from the general fund, there are 36 new verses in "Bearers of Witness with Justice."  See more whinging from the Japanese sailors and everyone else's thorough lack of patience with it.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This now has a Part 2 courtesy of the Magpie, which is still open for donations and signal boosts to extend the stories.  Agent Tamson and Elisabeth Finn talk about how to solve the problems at hand.  And then we find out that some supervillain somewhere has his head up a camel's ass.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls, and fills the "secret allies" square in my 7-16-16 card for the [community profile] hc_bingo fest. It was inspired by the "Policing with Velvet Gloves" article. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. This poem belongs to the Officer Pink thread of the Polychrome Heroics series, and directly follows "Show a Genuine Concern" so make sure to read that one first.

Warning: This poem contains some sensitive subjects. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It includes emotional angst, reference to past debates over city planning, an extremely hidebound academic advisor, intense academic stress, bureaucratic bullshit, and other challenges. However, it ends with plans for positive changes to Kyle's major, so the overall effect is upbeat. Readers with past or present academic conflicts may find this poem unsettling. This is the middle of three poems about Kyle, so skipping it would leave a gap. If these are touchy topics for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

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