ysabetwordsmith: (moment of silence)
David Patterson has passed away.  He was one of the last living U.S. Marines Navajo code talkers from World War II.  Aho!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Today we went out to visit Prairie Fruits Farm & Creamery for a fall event.  There was a construction detour on the way, the parking lot was overfull and required parking in an unmown overflow lot, the trail to the barns wasn't well marked, and the activities weren't impressive either.  We did note that they sell raw honey, and we bought some goat sausage, so it wasn't a total bust.  We also bought some homemade donuts, which were very tasty, although the advertised flavors weren't really discernible.  On the whole, we were underwhelmed by the farm.  I suspect their heart's in the right place for community outreach, but they don't quite know what they're doing yet when it comes to event organization.  So not a terrible trip, but disappointing.

We decided to drown our sorrows in some draft root beer and gourmet pizza at Brixx.  This improved our mood and the day.

There was still grocery shopping to do ... but then my partner Doug spotted a new antique store near Wal-Mart.  By new, it turns out they've only been there for 8 days.  And this is where the day turned amazing.  :D  The place is called Captain Jack's Treasures.  Imagine, if you will, a typical antique store, the size of a barn, crammed full of stuff, 90% of which is crud.  Now throw out all the crud and cream off the top 10% into one largish room.   That room is this store. 

Chatty folks, too, the staff and customers alike, so plan to spend some time if you go there.  You're not going to get in and out in 10 minutes.  We did eventually get our groceries.  Very eventually.  I think we spent between half an hour and an hour in there.

The owner bills himself as a treasure hunter, and I agree.  I've seen hundreds of antique stores, and the vast majority of them look like they were stocked by magpies.  This one is different.  It is very carefully curated by someone with an exceptional eye for quality.  (They also stock some stuff from other vendors, including Timeless Treasures.)  There were all sorts of items I recognize but almost never see anymore.  Old tricycles and wagons.  Depression-era glass and books.  Crockery.  Some truly splendid hardwood furniture.  A wooden horse that may have come off a carousel or child's riding toy.  A genuine cookstove with the lids on top that come off to expose the fire.  And if they get a bargain, you get a bargain; there was a walnut-and-marble coffee table for $75, and a couple of art glass rolling pins that I'm pretty sure had more than their $45 price in raw materials alone.  Prices actually ranged from very cheap -- the book I got was $4 -- on up to quite expensive for the really old and rare treasures.  Granted, people like all different things, so there was a lot of stuff that didn't grab me -- but I can recognize good stuff even if I'm not into it personally.  I didn't see the outright junk  that clutters most antique stores.  It was basically like a museum where you could buy all the stuff.  So we came home with a book, a jello mold, and a set of mid-century burlap glasses.  \o/

If you're within driving distance of Champaign-Urbana (the shop is actually in Savoy, which is adjacent to the south) and you're into antiques, this is totally worth the trip. Too far away?  Look up Captain Jack's Treasures on eBay.  That's mostly smaller items; you can see some of the larger ones on their Facebook page.  This is what happens when someone with a pirate's eye for travel and treasure takes up a legitimate business.  <3  It's adorable.  It's like a little slice of Terramagne.  Most highly recommended.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an interesting article about the mistakes paleoartists make

I was complaining about this as a very small child.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the June 6, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from ZB on Dreamwidth, [personal profile] mirrorofsmoke, [personal profile] chanter_greenie, [personal profile] ari_the_dodecahedron, [personal profile] alexseanchai, [personal profile] ng_moonmoth, and [personal profile] serpentine. It also fills the "punishment" square in my 5-29-17 card for the Pride Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Dr. Infanta thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem contains imagery which may disturb some readers. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It takes place during and after World War II. Thus it features genocide, discrimination, extreme violence, death and destruction, killing captive Nazis via superpower, jailbreaking, erotic art, orphaning, traumatic rage, war trials, extrajudicial execution, and other mayhem. Please consider your tastes and headspace before deciding if this is something you want to read.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... is not new, is more solid than ever, but people still aren't listening.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem was inspired by the Great American Eclipse. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette.


"Even for an Old Soul"


I remember walking the earth when
the Sun was a god whose departure
terrified the screaming masses, and
watching the shadows change with
a vague sense of familiarity, how I
held a ball in front of the fire and
tried to explain half-recalled physics.

I remember floating above it all
and watching the moon's shadow
race across the face of the planet,
so different from the view below,
yet no less mysterious, no less lovely.

In between, I stand among a crowd,
now awestruck rather than fearful,
the air smoked with barbecue
instead of sacrificial fires,
thinking how nice it is that
nobody is panicking for me
to clean up after; and this, too,
is wonderful in its own way.

It is a moment matched
with other moments in
a long necklace of lives,
a bright connection that
helps me to remember who
I have been and ever will be.

No matter how many times
I've seen a solar eclipse, it never fails
to take my breath away and close my throat
with the sweet ache of its fierce beauty.

Some things never get old,
even for an old soul.

* * *

Notes:

Read about eclipses.

An old soul is someone whose many prior incarnations influence how they move through their current one.

ysabetwordsmith: Family and horse in front of barn (Hart's Farm)
This poem came out of the September 5, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] mdlbear and [personal profile] wyld_dandelyon. It also fills the "Northern / Southern Lights" square in my 9-3-17 card for the [community profile] ladiesbingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] mdlbear. It belongs to the Hart's Farm series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the August 15, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by Anthony Barrette.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
So this happened

The same principle behind this leads to this and this.

I told you so.  I have been saying and saying that when a society starts pulling down statues, it tends to mushroom, because people get it in their heads they can destroy all the art they dislike.  Sure it's tempting.  Everybody loves to pull down something they hate and stomp on it.  That's very gratifying.  But it's a bad idea because it destroys the past and then nobody has nice things for a long time.  It also sucks when other people pull down stuff that YOU like just because THEY don't, and there is probably not one piece of art on the planet which is liked by everyone.  

Seriously, people, stop doing this shit.  Unpopular art can be moved to a place where it won't annoy folks, but destroying it is counter-civilization.
ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
This is today's freebie, inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] callibr8.

WARNING: This poem relates a historic murder that readers may find disturbing.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This was the linkback perk for the August 1, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl, originally hosted by [personal profile] dialecticdreamer. It came out of the May 2, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was prompted by [personal profile] stardreamer.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
This is today's freebie.


"Emergent Journeys"


The Northwest Passage was
the Holy Grail of explorers for centuries,
seeking an open-water route over
the top of North America.

In time, they discovered
that the arctic weather
locked the islands in ice.

There was no way for a ship
to get through with any reliability,
rendering it useless for trade.

But then the world began to warm,
and the ice melted, and the islands
shrugged off their white coats.

Suddenly, the Northwest Passage
glinted a thin blue beacon.

The ships began exploring again,
first a few, and then more of them.

Just as there are perishable truths --
things which used to be true
but have become false --

so too there are emergent journeys
following routes that used to be impassable
but have appeared out of the changing Earth.

* * *

Notes:

The Northwest Passage has a deadly history, but is opening up now.

Climate change and global warming have a stronger impact on the arctic area than on most other areas.

Many of the changes are bad, but not all are 100% bad.  Unless, you know, Canada declares war over everyone else trespassing in their sovereign waters.



ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Once upon a time, the roots of Monopoly began with a board and accessories that could be used to play two diametrically opposed games: the Landlord's Game and the Single Tax (aka Prosperity).  The first is similar to the familiar version, in which players try to gain as much money as possible to bankrupt everyone else as a means of winning.  The second does the exact opposite, collecting money into public funds and distributing it for public good.  There's a version where everyone wins when the person who started with the least money has doubled their holdings

I find the earlier versions of the game much more engrossing, as they use the same set of gaming equipment to explore different economic principles and practices.  In essence, it's a simulation, not just a game.  I wish that these earlier versions were available.  The boards can be seen and are described in the rules, but the cards are described only en masse, and not all could be recreated by examining the board.  There aren't many cooperative board games available, and I think it would be fun to play either the Single Tax or Prosperity versions.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the July 4, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] kengr, [personal profile] siliconshaman, and [personal profile] conuly. Special thanks to [personal profile] kengr for help estimating the weight of the donation and to [personal profile] siliconshaman for help estimating its worth. This poem also fills the "silver and gold" square in my 7-1-16 card for the Winter Fest in July Bingo. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] mama_kestrel. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the July 4, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] siliconshaman. It also fills the "gay" square in my 5-29-17 card for the Pride Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

WARNING: This poem contains historical atrocities which many readers may find disturbing. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features the Holocaust, acts of genocide, the Schutzstaffel, mass murder, loss of families, yellow stars, ghettos, a gay man and a straight woman getting married and raising a family together, some awkward family dynamics, gay-related bashing, unplanned (but welcome) lesbian pregnancy, and other challenges. But the good guys mostly win. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before deciding whether this is something you want to read. It is not a plot-relevant part of extant storylines, just an interesting piece of Terramagne history.

Read more... )

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