larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: "some guy" (Default)
Characters frequently appearing in this drama:

  • I - your humble narrator, sometime writer and poet (preferred pronoun: he/him/his)

  • Janni - spouse and writer (preferred pronoun: she/her/her)

  • TBD - nom de internet of our child, not yet a writer (preferred pronoun: they/them/their)
larryhammer: drawing of a wildhaired figure dancing, label: "La!" (wild hair)
Poetry Monday:


Voice Mail Villanelle, Dan Skwire

We're grateful that you called today
And sorry that we're occupied.
We will be with you right away.

Press one if you would like to stay,
Press two if you cannot decide.
We're grateful that you called today.

Press three to end this brief delay,
Press four if you believe we've lied.
We will be with you right away.

Press five to hear some music play,
Press six to speak with someone snide.
We're grateful that you called today.

Press seven if your hair's turned gray,
Press eight if you've already died.
We will be with you right away.

Press nine to hear recordings say
That service is our greatest pride.
We're grateful that you've called today.
We will be with you right away.


I think we can all recognize this experience.

---L.

Subject quote from "Wonder Pets! Theme Song."
larryhammer: a woman wearing a chain mail hoodie, label: "chain mail is sexy" (chain mail is sexy)
Another Wednesday come, another reading report. I am a very boring poster, with little more to say than this. I plead parenthood.

Finished:

Sohrab and Rustum by Matthew Arnold. Very pretty, Mr. Arnold, and a lucid embodiment of what you claim is Homer's style. However, comma, despite your treatment of Rustum as a tragic figure, his catastrophe is not a consequence of his character but rather circumstance, making him instead a pathetic figure. Try again. (Oh, wait, you did -- and failed damn every time.)

The Murderbot Diaries: All Systems Red by [personal profile] marthawells, the first of a projected series of novellas about a security droid who has hacked its own governor system and so became fully autonomous. Murderbot is the name it gives itself, which nicely encapsulates its own worldview -- not that it does much murdering, being far more interested in watching the entertainment feed than actually interacting with humans. Though if you start trying to harm its humans, it might feel a little compelled to prevent that -- if only to avoid exposure, which would get in the way of watching serial dramas. Wonderfully wry voice, like Marvin with more understatement. Will read the next, yes indeedy.

Acquainted with the Night: Insomnia Poems edited by Lisa Russ Spaar, a reread in snatches while winding down in bed. Still a very good anthology, selectionwise, but the layout of long lines was mangled very badly and not fixed by the proofreader. (And this from a university press!) If that sort of thing bugs you, you may want to skip this -- unless you are really drawn to the subject matter. Which I am.

The Ballad of Reading Gaol by Oscar Wilde. Ouch. I do not understand how Wilde simultaneously wrote successful propaganda and Poe-ean gothic horror, but he did. (Also, nobody expects the unexpected offhand Tannhäuser reference.)

Malcolm's Katie by Isabella Valency Crawford, a colonial romance valorizing the heroic individual with stylistic influences that are, despite this subject, not Byronic but Tennysonian (ETA: specifically, it's a domestic idyll). This works anyway, in no small part because even stronger than the frontier mythology is the Native American mythology. Plus the soliloquies are Shakespearean. Worth the tracking down -- or, yanno, following the link above. (Short shameful confession: the author first caught my attention because she shares an unusual name with the also-Canadian protagonist of The Blue Castle.)

DNF:

Old Spookses' Pass by Isabella Crawford -- because thick dialect writing. Pity, as it looks like it might have a good story underneath the bad spackling.

Eros & Psyche by Robert Bridges -- because the versification was just too grating, and not just the archaisms: too many lines clunk on the ear. Plus, he was showing no sign of ever departing from, undercutting, or otherwise revisioning Apuleius, and so far all the little elaborations were weaker than the unoriginal material. Meh.

Ongoing:

Am still reading Villanelles ed. by Finch & Mali -- about ⅔ through. Plus other pomes, some stories & some not.

---L.

Subject quote from "The Ethics of Elfland," G.K. Chesterton.
larryhammer: canyon landscape with saguaro and mesquite trees (desert)
For Poetry Monday, back to this guy who wrote poems only during WWI.


Rain, Edward Thomas

Rain, midnight rain, nothing but the wild rain
On this bleak hut, and solitude, and me
Remembering again that I shall die
And neither hear the rain nor give it thanks
For washing me cleaner than I have been
Since I was born into solitude.
Blessed are the dead that the rain rains upon:
But here I pray that none whom once I loved
Is dying tonight or lying still awake
Solitary, listening to the rain,
Either in pain or thus in sympathy
Helpless among the living and the dead,
Like a cold water among broken reeds,
Myriads of broken reeds all still and stiff,
Like me who have no love which this wild rain
Has not dissolved except the love of death,
If love it be towards what is perfect and
Cannot, the tempest tells me, disappoint.


I remember rain. We had some once -- it's that water that falls from the sky. That was a while ago. Not as long ago as Thomas, though.

---L.

Subject quote from "Onto a Vast Plain," Rainer Maria Rilke tr. Joanna Macy & Anita Barrows.
larryhammer: Yotsuba Koiwai running, label: "enjoy everything" (enjoy everything)
Four links for the price of three. Get them while they last!

A portal to over 1600 high-resolution maps of US national parks, monuments, recreation areas, and seashores. Search the whole collection or just start with the curator's favorites. (via)

The white ravens of Vancouver Island. (via)

The consequence of napping. Oh so very yes. (via)

Timelapses of spring flowers blooming and autumn leaves turning. (via)

---L.

Subject quote from "To Night," Percy Shelley.
larryhammer: a wisp of colored smoke, label: "softly and suddenly vanished away" (vanished)
For poetry Monday -- except, is it chestnut blooming time yet? Well even if it isn't, here are some:


"The chestnut casts his flambeaux," A.E. Housman

The chestnut casts his flambeaux, and the flowers
    Stream from the hawthorn on the wind away,
The doors clap to, the pane is blind with showers.
    Pass me the can, lad; there's an end of May.

There's one spoilt spring to scant our mortal lot,
    One season ruined of your little store.
May will be fine next year as like as not:
    But aye, but then we shall be twenty-four.

We for a certainty are not the first
    Have sat in taverns while the tempest hurled
Their hopeful plans to emptiness, and cursed
    Whatever brute and blackguard made the world.

It is in truth iniquity on high
    To cheat our sentenced souls of aught they crave,
And mar the merriment as you and I
    Fare on our long fool's-errand to the grave.

Iniquity it is; but pass the can.
    My lad, no pair of kings our mothers bore;
Our only portion is the estate of man:
    We want the moon, but we shall get no more.

If here to-day the cloud of thunder lours
    To-morrow it will hie on far behests;
The flesh will grieve on other bones than ours
    Soon, and the soul will mourn in other breasts.

The troubles of our proud and angry dust
    Are from eternity, and shall not fail.
Bear them we can, and if we can we must.
    Shoulder the sky, my lad, and drink your ale.


Shoulder the sky, indeed. (I've had to tell a disappointed toddler, "I can't get you the moon--I'm only a Daddy.") This is from Housman's 1922 collection Last Poems. Now pass that can.

---L.

Subject quote from "To Blossoms," Robert Herrick.
larryhammer: Tara from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" with Sappho painted on her back - label: "Greek poetry is sexy" (greek poetry is sexy)
"Reading Wednesday" sounds like I'm reading the actual day, which is nicely surreal. So: Reading Wednesday! -- in which I am still inhaling narrative poetry.

Finished:

The Charivari by George Longmore, an early Canadian poet (Montreal flavor). The influence of Byron is overt, and acknowledged in the subtitle ("in the style of Beppo"): this is a slender narrative interwoven with a plethora of narrative digressions that ostensibly distract from the story but actually support the point(s) the author is trying to make -- which, here, is to satirize and hopefully tone down the titular boisterous mock-serenades-cum-shakedowns upon the remarriage of widows or widowers, as part of a broader program to get Canadian arts and culture to parity with the Old World. Having recently read a couple Beppo-influenced tales where the digressions aren't on point, I applaud. Longmore's language is vigorous and colloquial, the verse under control, and the punctuation of this edition could use some serious editing for modern style -- specifically the commatization (the m-dashes are fine, even plethoric as they are). The ending doesn't quite land as firmly as I wanted, but it's appropriate for the story and genre. This deserves to be better known outside of Canada, so here: go read it.

Snow-Bound by William Greenleaf Whittier, an account of a New England farming family's time during a circa 1820 blizzard -- before trains and other modern communications changed how people lived and thought. Whittier started writing it after the death of his little sister, as a remembrance for his niece, and while nostalgia is the dominant mode, this never controls the narrative. There's multiple deaths being dealt with, actually, including explicit acknowledgement of the suffering of the recently concluded Civil War (Whittier was an ardent abolitionist, even unto being a founding member of the Republican Party, but as a devout Quaker he was a committed pacifist). The historical details keep ringing in my mind, after -- that and the imagery highlighting the importance of the fireplace.

The Fairy of the Fountains by Letitia Elizabeth Landon, a retelling of the Melusine story. I've been wandering through some of Landon's mid-length narratives, and this one is particularly interesting -- enough that I reread it. There's a few signature touches (including, yet again, a character getting in trouble through an emotional response to a story) and lot of echo patterning between Melusine and her mother. (Due warning: I haven't found a modern edition, and Landon's punctuation is atrocious, even by 1830s standards. If a period jars you, try mentally replacing it with a comma or other shorter pause -- the sentence will likely make more sense. Also, the first line makes more sense, both locally and symbolically, if you emend "mother's" to "mother".)

The Troubadour by Letitia Elizabeth Landon, a book-length historical verse romance. This has the structure of a bildungsroman, though Raymond doesn't seem to learn very much. Provençal knight with some facility with the lute more or less grows up, or at least survives vicissitudes of adventure (helped by a couple coincidences). Not entirely successful, nor as interesting as The Improvisatrice, but Landon's habitual pattern of expanding longer poems via inset stories/songs is handled well.

In progress:

Spirit Gate by Kate Elliott, the first of a trilogy. Almost gave up after the time jump after chapter 2, but got hooked by the end of chapter 7. Am ~⅓ through -- see how long I stick with this prose thing. (I understand that many people read a lot of that.)

And pomes. Lotsa pomes.

---L.

Subject quote from "Makamat," al-Hariri of Barra, tr. Theodore Preston.
larryhammer: text: "space/time OTP: because their love is everything" (space/time otp)
Is it time for a post of links? Yes, it is time for a post of links. Let us link:

Timelapse from the cockpit of an overnight flight from Zurich to São Paulo. (via)

Are speed limits frequently too low? Spoiler: arguably yes, at least in the US. (via)

Portal post reorganizing Wikipedia's list of cognative biases based on what problem each is trying to solve. (via?)

---L.

Subject quote from "Say not the Struggle Nought Availeth," Arthur Clough.
larryhammer: Tara from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" with Sappho painted on her back - label: "Greek poetry is sexy" (poetry)
Time again for a Poetry Monday:


Confiteor: A Country Song, Patricia Monaghan

Evening. Red sky. Standing at the door
I sense a shadow presence here:
the one who loved this land before.

These harmless hills bear scars of war.
Someone stood here, full of fear.
This is not a metaphor.

Above me, turkey vultures soar;
below the garden, seven deer.
Someone loved this land before,

loved it as I do, maybe more.
She did not simply disappear
and she is not a metaphor:

This was some woman’s home before
pale soldiers came to clear
a land that someone loved before.

What to do with facts like this? Ignore
them? Hope they disappear?
Someone loved this land before.
None of this is metaphor.


---L.

Subject quote from "Ode on Melancholy," John Keats.
larryhammer: Yotsuba Koiwai running, label: "enjoy everything" (enjoy everything)
TBD is four years old. Finally. The party was yesterday, in a park with 5 child guests (and a toddler sibling). We survived.

Achievements unlocked this last month: mazes (usually traced with finger, pending the fine motor control for a crayon/pencil), the concept of trying to color inside the lines, math video games (basic addition and subtraction, with answers worked out on fingers or counting objects), Snap and Go Fish (open-handed), opening the freezer, using a cooler to climb onto the kitchen counter without help, "Nana-nana-boo-boo!"

We think that last was learned at preschool.

The story lines of pretend play are getting more complex, as are the premises of requested stories. Either people or toys play the roles in pretend, where by "toys" I mean cars and trucks, the go-to pastime hereabouts. There is more interest than ever in establishing what is real and what is only in stories.

Current superheroes of interest are the Guardians of the Galaxy with a side order of X-Men and Spiderman. Bedtime story requests have included a LOT of pregnancies and births lately -- something's being worked through there. TBD still really wants to learn to read, but reviewing letters has less urgency ATM -- possibly because of a surge in maths. The only capital letters that give trouble are V (looks like Y) and E (like F or G), but the only lowercases really known are those similar to its capital.

Syntactic swapping has extended to semantic forms: "Learn me something!" and similar confusion over the direction of action. (And then there's "I won you.") "Doodle!" (sometimes "Deedle!") is the current all-purpose nonsense response, especially when not wanting to answer a question. Attempts to reintroduce Totea haven't really taken (we parents kinda miss her).

Plonking on piano is getting more exploratory: playing with rhythms and dynamics (loud/soft) as well as harmonics. There's been more variety, the past couple weeks, in songs sung at random moments -- and, hmmm, less invented lyrics. Dunno what to make of that.

Don't know what to make of this, either: TBD correctly, without anyone naming it, identified as poetry my habitual reading while supervising bedtime. When I'm reading poems about bugs, there is enough interest in it that reading one aloud has by popular demand become part of the routine, after stories. (That there are no poems about rolly-pollies was a disappointment.) For this, I'm willing to allow the delaying tactic.

And other talking, talking:

Janni: "I'm still learning how to do this."
TBD: "I'm teaching you."
"You are."
"We all teach each other."

"1! 2! 3! 4! 1! Blastoff!"
(eventually counting down all the numbers caught on)

"I can't say Urias very well."
(Uranus)

"You be a people and I be a T-Rex." (pause) "T-Rex can eat people?"

"I be a cheetah and you be an antelope."

Me: "No, this car is going night-night."
TBD: (scornful) "It can't go to sleep. It's a toy."

"Tell me about the robots in space and in rockets and on planets and who crashed and whose batteries have died."
(still a much-repeated request)

"$friend says I know everything. But I don't know everything!"

(playing quietly with balloons on couch)
(softly to self) "5 balloons. If I take away 1 (throws one to floor) then I have 1 2 3 4. If I take away 1 more (throws one to floor) then I have 1 2 3. If I take away 1 more (throws one to floor) then I have 1 2. If I take away 1 more (throws one to floor) then I have 1." (turns to me) (triumphantly) "1!" (throws it at me)

"Maybe you can be the little kid and I can be the blender" (screeches at top of lungs)

Needless to say, I covered my ears and said,"Eek!" As one does. Onward!

---L.

Subject quote from "Passing Afternoon," Iron & Wine.
larryhammer: drawing of a wildhaired figure dancing, label: "La!" (la!)
That's my last Duchess painted on the wall.
I've tried, but I can't scrape her off at all.
—Richard Armour
larryhammer: a wisp of smoke, label: "it comes in curlicues, spirals as it twirls" (what tangled tales we weave)
Stepping backward again for a Poetry Monday that has a further looking back:


A Toccata of Galuppi’s, Robert Browning

Oh Galuppi, Baldassaro, this is very sad to find!
I can hardly misconceive you; it would prove me deaf and blind;
But although I take your meaning, 'tis with such a heavy mind!

Here you come with your old music, and here's all the good it brings.
What, they lived once thus at Venice where the merchants were the kings,
Where Saint Mark's is, where the Doges used to wed the sea with rings?

Ay, because the sea's the street there; and 'tis arched by . . . what you call
. . . Shylock's bridge with houses on it, where they kept the carnival:
I was never out of England—it's as if I saw it all.

Did young people take their pleasure when the sea was warm in May?
Balls and masks begun at midnight, burning ever to mid-day,
When they made up fresh adventures for the morrow, do you say?

Was a lady such a lady, cheeks so round and lips so red,—
On her neck the small face buoyant, like a bell-flower on its bed,
O'er the breast's superb abundance where a man might base his head?

Well, and it was graceful of them—they'd break talk off and afford
—She, to bite her mask's black velvet—he, to finger on his sword,
While you sat and played Toccatas, stately at the clavichord?

What? Those lesser thirds so plaintive, sixths diminished, sigh on sigh,
Told them something? Those suspensions, those solutions—"Must we die?"
Those commiserating sevenths—"Life might last! we can but try!"

"Were you happy?" —"Yes."—"And are you still as happy?"—"Yes. And you?"
—"Then, more kisses!"—"Did I stop them, when a million seemed so few?"
Hark, the dominant's persistence till it must be answered to!

So, an octave struck the answer. Oh, they praised you, I dare say!
"Brave Galuppi! that was music! good alike at grave and gay!
I can always leave off talking when I hear a master play!"

Then they left you for their pleasure: till in due time, one by one,
Some with lives that came to nothing, some with deeds as well undone,
Death stepped tacitly and took them where they never see the sun.

But when I sit down to reason, think to take my stand nor swerve,
While I triumph o'er a secret wrung from nature's close reserve,
In you come with your cold music till I creep thro' every nerve.

Yes, you, like a ghostly cricket, creaking where a house was burned:
"Dust and ashes, dead and done with, Venice spent what Venice earned.
The soul, doubtless, is immortal—where a soul can be discerned.

"Yours for instance: you know physics, something of geology,
Mathematics are your pastime; souls shall rise in their degree;
Butterflies may dread extinction,—you'll not die, it cannot be!

"As for Venice and her people, merely born to bloom and drop,
Here on earth they bore their fruitage, mirth and folly were the crop:
What of soul was left, I wonder, when the kissing had to stop?

"Dust and ashes!" So you creak it, and I want the heart to scold.
Dear dead women, with such hair, too—what's become of all the gold
Used to hang and brush their bosoms? I feel chilly and grown old.


The more I return to Browning, the more interestingly knotty I find him. The point here, under all the meditation on reality/art(ifice) and (im)mortality, is continuing on despite the knowledge of death. (Does the speaker get this? -- I don't know, but if not, it wouldn't be Browning's only illustrative failure.) Possibly unhelpful glosses: Venetian musician/composer Baldassare Galuppi (1706-85) visited England in 1741, thus making his music known there. The poem was written while living in Italy, so the speaker is not Browning himself, but rather a contemporary, parochial Englishman. Browning had sheet music for some of Galuppi's keyboard toccatas, but no one piece has been identified as the poem's inspiration, and it would be stupid if there was one. (Whatever else he might have been, Browning was not stupid.)

---L.

Subject quote from "Venus and Adonis," William Shakespeare.
larryhammer: photo of Enceladus (the moon, not the mythological being), label: "Enceladus is sexy" (astronomy)
Three obviously related links of awesomeness:

The motion of 2 million stars over 5 million years. (via)

All of NASA's photos and videos in a single, searchable website: https://images.nasa.gov/. Aw, yisssss. (via)

Prince and Muppets. You're welcome. (via)

---L.

Subject quote from "Stanzas in Memory of the Author of "Obermann"," Matthew Arnold.
larryhammer: Tara from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" with Sappho painted on her back - label: "Greek poetry is sexy" (greek poetry is sexy)
Reading, reading, reading -- almost all of it narrative poems. It is, apparently, what I'm needing.

Finished:

Charmides by Oscar Wilde, his longest poem and apparently his only sustained narrative in verse -- for he was a poet before turning novelist and then playwright. The descriptions are awesomely lush (he learned a lot from Keats) and the decadence amusing (ditto from Swinburne), and the stanza looks to be deliberately evoking Shakespeare's Venus and Adonis. I am delighted by Wilde's ability to carry sentences across multiple stanzas -- I think one managed to go on for eight. Whether it works as a story probably depends on whether the lush and the decadent work for you, as well as how you feel about dubcon. (Other content warnings: ravishment (for lack of a better word) of a statue of Athena; necrophilia.)

The Witch of Atlas by Percy Shelley in a sportive mood. How gender-bendy and otherwise non-straight is this? Well, for starters, the witch herself is beautiful enough she brings all the nymphs as well as satyrs to her yard, is asexual, and creates an intersex companion (called Hermaphroditus) who's just as ace -- and I'm sure I'm missing stuff. The story itself is fluff, the verse is as beautiful as the best of Shelley's works, and the tale ends without the promised continuing adventures (hmph!). Mary didn't like it, and apparently almost didn't publish it with his posthumous poems (?!).

Lamia by John Keats -- hrm. Well then. It's been a while since I read this -- and the disjoint between remembered and present experience was stronger than usual. The casual noncon is par for the course with Greek mythology, but Lamia's deliberately throwing a nymph under that bus is, um, unsympathetic. The plot's otherwise okay, but the craft, not so much. It's not just that the pacing is as wonky as a gimbal with a chip on one edge -- the verse is also not under his control, especially the rhythm, to the point that some lines, his meter is discordantly rocky. Many of his words used in not-quite-standard ways aren't successful -- done well and to deliberate effect, such coinages can be dazzling (see Keats's best stuff) but here they weren't, often enough to be distracting.

The Eve of St. Agnes by John Keats, which was a good corrective example of his best stuff. The coinages here work well (except the "agues in her brain"), and more importantly, he rides like a master the rhythm and pace of each stanza. It's like he was at a stage where blank verse or couplets didn't give him enough constraint to work against (see also: Endymion). The pace of story is, stanza-by-stanza, languid, but that matches the tone of this admittedly rather thin story.

The Culprit Fay by Joseph Rodman Drake, a talented Romantic poet who, like Keats, died too young. A century ago, this was still a known, popular poem (it had been added to American high school curricula as an unembarrassing native work) but it's largely forgotten now, more's the pity. The tale itself is a quest fantasy using European fairy lore charmingly nativized to the Hudson River valley, with delightful details and a decent adventure. Fair warning: the first half of the quest, with the hero working on his own, is better than the second half, which is furthered by an unjustified unrequited love-interest. (Unfair warning: possibly this should not be read soon after The Loves of the Angels.)

Admetus by Emma Lazarus (hat tip to [personal profile] sovay for pointing me to this and the next), a blank verse narrative that would have been better named "Alcestis," as she's the real focus of the story: a relatively straight-up telling of her myth with a few interesting touches. The verse uses a very plain style, and as poem goes on the transitions get more abrupt and elliptical, and the narrative turns to almost pure dialog -- to the point I suspect that if I didn't know the original tale I'd have a hard time following the resolution. Interestingly, there's a somewhat defensive note at the end of the next poem explaining that they were both written before William Morris published his versions in The Earthly Paradise, and so not plagiarized from him -- which invites unfortunate comparisons, and Morris is overall (for all his flaws) a stronger talespinner as well as versifier, as far as this is concerned. (Reviewers at the time commented that the note wasn't needed as anyone with an ear could tell she hadn't cribbed from Morris.)

Tannhäuser by Emma Lazarus, also blank verse but in a lusher style appropriate for the subject matter: Tannhäuser's easy seduction by Venus and repentance after his return from under Venusberg. In the comparison with Morris invited by the end-note, Lazarus fares better -- this is much stronger than Admetus. (Neither of them hold a candle to Swinburne's Laus Veneris, mind, as ACS attempts -- and largely succeeds at -- something more ambitious than either Lazarus or Morris.) I can't help but think that ambivalence over Lazarus's Jewishness worked fruitful tensions into this story of Christianized Paganism, and also that parts of this are actually aimed at critiquing "Thomas the Rhymer." (That last seems a bit of a leap, as I write this now, but that was my reaction while reading.) I especially liked the small touch of Venus's motivation. OTOH, the touches of moralizing aimed at Tannhäuser during his disenchantment are the main discordant note.

Ongoing:

More bug poems.

DNF:

Andromeda by Charles Kingsley -- while retconning the inhabitants of the coast of Libya into not following the gods of Olympus is laudable, his dactylic hexameters were too grating to stay with it. Only Longfellow and Clough, that I've met, have managed that line well enough to read at length. (If anyone gets far enough into it, let me know how his female characters are.)

Next:

More of this stuff, I suspect.

(Is it time to reread The Earthly Paradise? It may be time to reread The Earthly Paradise.)

---L.

Subject quote from "Lamia," John Keats, who still rang out great lines in problematic poems.
larryhammer: Tara from "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" with Sappho painted on her back - label: "Greek poetry is sexy" (greek poetry is sexy)
For Poetry Monday, another something on the contemporary side:


The Villanelle is What?, John M. Ford

Enter Mr Jno. Ford (the Elizabethan one) as King Edward the Fourth

I am the King now, and I want a sandwich.
This monarch business makes a fellow hungry.
I wonder where my brother Richard is.

What happened to the kippers left from breakfast?
Or maybe there's a bit of cold roast pheasant.
I am the King now, and I want a sandwich.

A civil war is such an awful bother.
We fought at Tewksbury and still ran out of mustard.
I wonder where my brother Richard is.

Speak not to me of pasta marinara.
I know we laid in lots of boar last Tuesday.
I am the King now, and I want a sandwich.

The pantry seems entirely full of Woodvilles
And Clarence has drunk two-thirds of the cellar.
I wonder where my brother Richard is.

If I ran England like I run that kitchen
You'd half expect somebody to usurp it.
I am the King now, and I want a sandwich.
I wonder where my brother Richard is.


Think of this, possibly, as a pre-canon fic for Shakespeare's Richard III. It does explain, compellingly, some of the history of that confusing time. If the lack of rhymes in this otherwise strict villanelle bugs you, I refer you to the title.

---L.

Subject quote by Abraham Cowley after Anacreon.
larryhammer: photo of Enceladus (the moon, not the mythological being), label: "Enceladus is sexy" (enceladus)
More links:

Why shoelaces eventually come undone. Short answer: when your foot comes down, the sudden stop tugs a very tiny bit on the free ends of the bow, and the tiny tugs build up. (via)

A solar-powered device that condenses water out of low-humidity air. Mind you, that 20% humidity is pretty moist for a desert: our evaporative cooler works effectively only below that, which is most of the time outside of rainy season. Good stuff anyway.

There is heat below the surface of Enceladus. (via)

---L.

Subject quote from "Dirge for Two Veterans," Walt Whitman.
larryhammer: photo of Enceladus (the moon, not the mythological being), label: "Enceladus is sexy" (astronomy)
Meanwhile, have some linkies:

A complete rotation of the moon, stitching together high-resolution photos from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.* So you can see the back side in HD. (via)

Making a dugout canoe by hand. (via)

Beautiful trolling. Feel free to poke around at some of the other explanations.


* One of the few robots in space that TBD isn't interested in ... the name is not exactly small-child-friendly.


---L.

Subject quote from "Solsbury Hill," Peter Gabriel.

May 2017

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3456
7 8910 11 1213
14 1516 17181920
21 22 232425 2627
28293031   

Syndicate

RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Page Summary

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated 30 May 2017 10:54 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios