ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the August 15, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] lone_cat, [personal profile] bairnsidhe, [personal profile] readera, [personal profile] technoshaman, and [personal profile] we_are_spc. It also fills the "safe" square in my 7-31-17 card for the Cottoncandy Bingo fest. This poem has been chosen in an audience poll as the free epic for the September 5, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl meeting its $200 goal. It belongs to the Kraken thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Thanks to a donation from Shirley Barrette, you can now read "A Haven in a Heartless World" in full.  Families form even in the unlikeliest situations.
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
 You can now read "QRM" by [personal profile] chanter_greenie.  I sponsored this to share some glimpses of people in a safehouse, fighting back against a repressive government.
ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] chanter_greenie is holding a half-price sale for the Orange!verse stories in Schrodinger's Heroes, along with a few other items.  Prices range from $5.25 to $23, and the sale runs through September 19.  There is a PayPal button on the profile page.  It would be really great to see more of these posted.  Some are dark, others lighter, but they're all good examples of how people right against an oppressive culture.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the September 5, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It also fills the "adrift" square in my 9-1-17 card for the Pirate Fest Bingo. This poem belongs to An Army of One series.

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ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
This is today's freebie, inspired by a backchannel prompt from [personal profile] mirrorofsmoke (Rocket).

Warning: This poem contains dysfunctional family dynamics and some very bent ideas about what "family" means. But they love each other anyway, even if they don't realize it or know how to express it in healthy ways.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the September 2013 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by the artwork of Choi Xoo Ang. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] kengr. This poem belongs to the series Diminished Expectations.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Thanks to a donation by [personal profile] zianuray you can now read "The Order of Their Stars" in full.  Astin and V talk on the way out of the sex shop.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Thanks to an audience poll, there are 44 new verses in "The Order of Their Stars."  Watch V flibber around the sex shop and find some fun stuff!  Does anyone have $10 to finish this?  If so, send it along and we'll be down to two open epics, thus freeing up a slot for Tuesday's "anything goes" fishbowl.

EDIT 8/13/17: Thanks to a donation from [personal profile] zianuray this poem is now complete!  \o/

EDIT 8/13/17: [personal profile] bairnsidhe sent a donation and we're discussing which poem to open for microfunding.  :D
ysabetwordsmith: (moment of silence)
Haruo Nakajima has died.  He was best known for playing Gojira (Godzilla) but also played a number of other movie monsters.

I imagine that Greatcon is painting cardboard box buildings as fast as they can in preparation for the welcoming bash.  RAAAR! *radioactive breath* RAAAAAAR! 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Interesting tidbits from the newsletter ...

Protecting Pollinators
Minimize or eliminate use of pesticides in your yard.  In addition to being an environmentalist, I'm also cheap and lazy, so I use pesticides only as a last resort -- for instance, dealing with Japanese beetles that nothing will eat, or killing poison ivy.  I don't make blanket applications of anything, only spot-spray.  Also I won't buy nursery plants pre-treated with pesticides; they're often labeled for neonicitinoids, and I tell vendors why I won't buy those.  If I'm buying flowers, it's usually for the pollinators.

How to Attract Fireflies
I already do most of these things, and we have plenty of fireflies. But this caught my eye:

In some cases, “we still debate what constitutes a species,” says Eric Lee-Mäder, pollinator program co-director for the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation. “Are two morphologically identical fireflies with different flash patterns two species—or one species with individuals speaking different languages? If we can’t answer that, how can we know how the insects are doing?”

I am now imagining some hapless alien trying to classify humans as species, based on things like color phase and communication, without being able to tell quickly and easily whether the groups are cross-fertile.  LOL

Generally, I count species as separate if they are unable or unwilling to breed with each other.  Sometimes they are biologically compatible but different cultures make their mate-selection methods mutually exclusive.  Back when most human groups were endogamous and people traveled less, a case could've been made on those grounds that humans were different species.  Of course, a look at human genetics indicates that different species don't stop them from fucking, and occasionally there are related species that are (at least sometimes) cross-fertile.  We have subsumed the DNA of at least two or three other hominids.

Now imagine the poor aliens finding that we have wiped out all the other hominids except for the bits left inside us, like the fossilized remains of parasitic twins.  Somewhere in the galaxy, someone is probably writing us as a natural-species version of the The Blob and submitting it to a horror magazine.



ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the September 2013 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by a sculpture from Choi Xoo Ang. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] kengr. This poem belongs to the series Diminished Expectations.


"The Speakers"


Their bodies are blanched
pale as bone, flesh crudely formed
like lines and lumps left in clay;
they have small high breasts,
legs but no arms, and
neither noses nor eyes.

There are two speakers,
each with a mouth
lined by thick red lips
around white teeth,
tongues wagging.

Eaten alive by frustration,
they hiss and screech
at each other,
but they cannot hear
for they have no ears.

The only one
who can hear them
is the listener

who has a single fleshy ear
but no mouth of her own.

* * *

Notes:

Communication is an essential human need and the means of social interaction.  Poor communication skills lead to poor relationships and other unhappiness.  Explore how to improve your communication skills.

Speaking is the active half of verbal communication.  You can learn better speaking skills.

Listening is the receptive half of verbal communication.  Read about how to develop your listening skills.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the September 2013 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by a sculpture from Choi Xoo Ang.  It has been sponsored by [personal profile] kengr.  This poem belongs to the series Diminished Expectations.


"Rooted in Place"



Perseverance is no beauty;
her body is slim and attenuated,
her breasts barely formed
and arms altogether absent.

She can hear what people say about her:
there is nothing whatsoever wrong with her ears.

She leans back, leans away,
turns her face to the side
in a thorough show of rejection.

Skin the color of cottage cheese
ends just above the ankles;
her feet are huge and human
and they never want to go anywhere.

It is almost as if she has roots
instead of heel and sole and toes.

Yes, that is it:
Perseverance is rooted in the past,
she is what her body has made of her,
and for all of her resistance

she cannot escape herself.

* * *

Notes:

Perseverance is the ability to keep going in the face of obstacles.  Learn how to persevere.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the August 1, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] peoriapeoriawhereart. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles.

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ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
This poem came out of the August 1, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] ellenmillion. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] daisiesrockalot. This poem belongs to the Torn World project.

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ysabetwordsmith: Jump gate showing diamond ring of light (blueshift)
This came out of the August 1, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] alexseanchai and [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It also fills the "acceptance" square in my 7-31-17 card for the Cottoncandy Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] daisiesrockalot. It belongs to the Blueshift Troupers project.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
A scene I saw on TV reminded me of this epic image.  And now I'm wanting to recast it with half a dozen middle-aged women cosplaying General Organa in a war room, and the caption "Somewhere there's a feminist with only two wishes left."  Surely there must be a con somewhere that this could happen.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the July 4, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] ellenmillion and [personal profile] peoriapeoriawhereart. It also fills the "genderfluid" square in my 5-29-17 card for the Pride Bingo fest.


"The Declension of Gender"


The Tiresians had not just two genders
but dozens -- nearly a hundred,
according to some counts.

Instead of putting gender into language,
they put language into gender,
shapeshifting as they went
from one topic to another.

Humans wrote whole books about
which gender went with what topics,
but still didn't understand them.

The only humans who could
speak Tiresian even minimally
were genderfluid folks, and
even they struggled with
that degree of flexibility.

Meanwhile, the Tiresian scholars --
to whom the declension of gender
came as naturally as breathing --
struggled to comprehend

how gender could be sessile.

* * *

Notes:

Declension is a type of grammatical change that inflects nouns and pronouns to indicate things such as gender or number. When someone says, "My pronouns are ze, zer, zem," that is declension.

Sessile means stationary or nonmoving in biology.  Sharks are mobile, while barnacles (as adults) are sessile.

ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
This poem came out of the June 6, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] ellenmillion. It also fills the "Interracial or Interspecies Love" square in my 2-1-17 card (Romantic) for the Valentines Bingo fest. This poem was the linkback perk for the July 4, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It belongs to the Torn World project.

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