Monday, November 09, 2009

Poetry Post: Heroic Couplets

Eighteen lines of heroic couplets in iambic pentameter. I wanted to write about something happy, but after seeing this girl at the mental institution where I work this semester, nothing happy came to mind. Not my best day ever.

All in One

At first she seems so simple and composed,
but watch... and down the rabbit-hole she goes
inside her mind, and never bats an eye.
A carousel of people whirling by
behind the placid stare; they want to speak,
they only want to help when she is weak,
for none of them would live were she to die.
They rage when she cannot defend, and cry
when the center cannot hold; the pieces left
behind by trauma and fear, each person cleft
from her, their host, and lashing out in pain.
Their handiwork: the scars that still remain
on her once unblemished arms. The angry one
once tried to drown her, and very nearly won.
As I observe her in her room, I see
the multiple, the girl with D.I.D.;
the girl with scars, with fears, with pain and doubt,
the girl who tried to take the wrong way out.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Poetry Post: Blank Verse

Iambic pentameter is the least of your worries when battling writer's block. There really was a mantis watching me work. Ever had a bug for a muse? It's a strange experience.


The praying mantis perching near my book
stays safely out of reach, where she can watch
with compound eyes unblinking; every move
is analyzed. It’s hard to concentrate
and read with her in silent audience,
though I stopped watching her some time ago.
I reach to try and touch her sticklike frame.
She tilts her angled head so quizzically
at first, and inches back uncertainly,
then looks away to feign disinterest
in boring, docile humans like myself.
It’s cute. ...diversionary fun, but cute.
I try to leave her be and read my book,
but when I turn around again, she’s gone,
and all my entertainment goes with her.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Long Time, No Blog

That's right - I'm back, babies. Admit it... all two of you missed me. :3

This semester I'm taking a creative writing class on poetry (which is way more exciting than it sounds... partially because there are no tests. XD).
That said, the weekly poem will probably end up on the ol' blog. Like this poem here! It's a sestina, thirty-nine lines with repeating non-rhyming end words, using both iambic pentameter and iambic tetrameter. Throwing around poetry jargon maketh the poet feel all intelligent and stuff.
And yes, if you couldn't tell, I'm still researching Vietnam and related things. Like post-traumatic stress disorder.
(for extra points, you can play a little game I like to call "Spot the Obscure Yeats Reference"...)
Somewhere in Viet Nam, 1969

The long, hard road we chose to follow
We all know we may never leave;
Each man feels the stifled fear inside,
And we know the memories we’ll hold,
The folks back home will never understand.
No soldier wants to die alone out here.

Some of the boys don’t remember why we’re here,
But there are always orders to follow.
At first, I couldn’t understand
Why any soldier would want to leave.
If we still had to fight for our ranks to hold,
Our wish to run would have to be kept inside—

But kids like us can’t keep it all inside!
The bullet that gets you, you won’t even hear…
And all you’ve got is a gun to hold
As you go where even angels won’t follow,
You force your fears to check out and leave.
That’s one thing I never wanted to understand.

This ever-present terror I’ve learned to stand,
It’s like a cold and deadened weight inside—
The kind of weight that just won’t leave;
The kind you know will always be here.
I’m afraid this weight will always follow
me, and the other boys to which I hold.

We know the Viet Cong cannot hold.
I know this army has to make a stand,
And I’ll march on ‘til there’s no one left to follow.
But I can’t seem to shake the feeling inside
That says I could, and would, just pick up and leave...
This war is the only reason I’m still here.

My tour has halfway finished here.
I don’t know how long my post will hold,
But I will fight ‘til the day I leave.
I only wish you could see and understand
The silent soldier screaming to death inside;
After his mind goes, his body is sure to follow.

Good men followed orders to stay out here...
From the inside, the Viet Cong won’t hold,
But I understand why a guy would want to leave.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Transforming Oedipus

Yeah, it's gotta be Finals week if I'm blogging about stuff like this.

Today's reading comes from a little article on Fox News that, as a student of psychology, I felt bound to share with you, the general blog-centric public.

. . .

If that doesn't leave you disenchanted about old Disney Channel shows, nothing will. Freud's probably chortling from his grave right now.

No wonder Hollywood is going down the drain.
(Is going? Has gone?)

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hey, Mikey, I Think She Likes It!

Test, one two three... I just want to see if this mobile blogging thing works. Besides, it's about time for an update, right? Does this count?


The bit above was texted to my blog. Sweet success is mine! XD
...delusions of grandeur seem to be mine also. :/ Ah, well.

So. The latest obsession is the soundtrack from Across The Universe. I haven't seen the movie yet (curse you, Covenant, for your lack of bandwidth!), but it apparently coincides with an era of history I've started to research this year: the Vietnam War. And if all goes well, over the summer I'll start on the writing project that has inspired this research.

Tell me what you think:
An epistolary novel using the letters and journals of three friends; starts around 1960 and continues through the major events in the friends' lives, including the uprising of Jim Jones and the People's Temple, and the effects of the Vietnam War both state-side and overseas. One character will go off with the People's Temple crowd, one will go to Vietnam, and one will stay home (because home at this time was, as far as I can tell, far more complicated than it seemed).

Yes, it's involving a lot of research. Even looking at calendars starting in 1960 to get all the dates down proper, and possibly inventing a platoon for a character who will be the soldier in Vietnam. I mean, heck, if Homer Hickam can do it...
(pick up a copy of Torpedo Junction sometime and imagine all the research that went into that. He's pretty intense.)

Historical fiction could be fun. Hard, but fun.

Give feedback! Any ideas? Book/research material recommendations?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Do Not Adjust Your Blog. We Control The Bandwith.

It's about time for an Unscripted YouTube post. We shall see if my mad HTML skillz can make the embedding work properly. Let me know if something isn't working.


First up: living proof that choreography is now vitally important for marketing.

Next: the frequently mentioned (on this blog) author Neil Gaiman, assuring us that buttons are not scary. At all. Particularly not if you're familiar with a major plot-point in Coraline.

Now, happiness all around: more references to musicals than anyone knows what to do with! (I wish I could identify all the songs for you... but alas, I cannot. Nevertheless, hearing Hugh Jackman sing West Side Story makes my life just a little bit more awesome.)
(another note: this video might be taken down eventually, like the other musical number from the 2009 Oscars that I wanted to show off.)

And on the topic of musicals, Gene Kelly was on an episode of The Muppet Show, and I am so sad that I'm too young to remember this show at all (my Muppet-related show was "Muppets Tonight", back when Disney had quality prime-time television). The song is from the Judy Garland/Gene Kelly flick "Summer Stock". Oh, and I freaking love Gonzo.

Finally, a scene from a movie I wish I'd grown up watching: Danny Kaye's "The Court Jester". I don't blame him for getting mixed up - I was, too, when I heard some college friends quoting this scene back and forth to each other.

Monday, February 02, 2009

On Self-Publishing and Publicity

...well, not really. More like a couple of shameless self-plugs. -_-a

First, take a look to your right - you should see a new widget in that column for Twitter updates sent by yours truly. It's partially an aid to show the world that, regardless of how much or little I update my blog, I still live. Plus, Twitter is one of the coolest things I've mucked about with in the past year or so. Yesh.

Second, the short and fiction-like things are not coming along as well as I'd hoped. Fortunately, something else is: recently I began to load an ongoing project onto, and if you have the time, check it out. I'd love for some feedback, whether good, bad, or just plain ugly. ...with the exception of the last, probably. You can leave comments on WEbook only if you're a member, but feel free to leave comments here on the ol' blogspace, too.
Oh... and please ignore the obvious implications from the choice of character name. I tried to change it, but it just didn't feel right.

In other news...
Have you ever seen a highly attractive man maul a newspaper in a musical number?

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Cool Stuff for Today

Why do homework when you can blog?

I haven't had an entry of random cool things in a while. So here you are: mass linkage, coming up.
(Half of these I, ahem, stumbled upon. If you use Mozilla Firefox, add the program "StumbleUpon" from the add-ons section. Hours of entertainment. It brings up awesome things like this.)

Books and Authors:
Two of my favorite authors are on Twitter - Donna Andrews and Neil Gaiman.

A complete, exhaustive, and 80% facetious recap of the season 5 premiere of LOST from last Wednesday: Because You Left, and The Lie. (Warning: bad language. Lots of bad language. It is, nevertheless, hilarious.)

Did I mention Neil Gaiman in the past five minutes? Because one of his books, Coraline, is now a movie. You can hazard a guess as to where I'll be on February 6th. (and I'm trying to forget that Dakota Fanning is the voice of the title character. Ah, well - you can't have a perfect movie, I suppose.)

Video for "Love Me Dead" by Ludo...
Video for "The Mermaid" from a Great Big Sea "kitchen party"... may I say, the b'ys throw great parties.

This probably should go under TV, but never mind.
A segment from Whose Line Is It Anyway? that cracks me up every time: Irish Drinking Song: Wrong Name
(If that link doesn't work, try this one.)

And that's all for now. When I find something else cool, you will probably be the first to know.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Insert Applicable Dog-Related Pun Here

This link will be particularly funny to anyone who has ever owned a pet and had to administer medicine to aforementioned pet.

One of my favorite authors, Neil Gaiman, has a blog/journal that I read regularly. He also seems to have a dog.

I never had to give pills to my family's cats, but there's been a time or two over the past year when I've had pill-duty for our dear and wonderful dog. It is the most difficult and most disgusting task I think I have had in the history of Milton family pet-ownership. Cleaning out the cat's litterbox pales in comparison to fingers covered in dog saliva and remnants of wet peanut butter, and that's if Daisy actually swallows the blasted pill.

I may have to try his trick. If you do, too, let me know how it goes.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Small Update...

In an effort to maintain my sanity, I will be attempting to blog more this semester.

Yes, I realize that every time I say I will blog, I don't.
Hopefully I will have time.
Writing helps de-stress, therefore blogging should too, right?


Upcoming posts:
-I want to do an entry about the book I was reading at home about Dissociative Identity Disorder.
-Also, maybe show some rhyme or reason for the research I've been doing about Vietnam and, on a surprisingly related note, Jonestown.
-Aaaaand the big Doctor Who kick I've been on may catch on in the blog. Particularly if I keep watching Peter Davison's portrayal of The Doctor. ^//^a

Maybe I'll even post something short and fiction-like, if all possible. Assuming I write something short and fiction-like.

By the way, my dears... whilst I type away by the white glow of a laptop screen, it's 7.9° outside. Wind chill is -5° or so.
I'm in college in Georgia.
This shouldn't be happening.

Stay warm. 'tis the season to lose toes to frostbite, if you stay outside too long. Possibly even five minutes too long.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Walzing with Bashir

Today's history lesson, and potential Oscar nom, is brought to you by this article from BBC News.

I must confess that I am not much of a "history person". Granted, I find certain eras of history more interesting than others, and I'm known do extracurricular research when something really catches my attention... but for the most part, important dates and notches on a timeline slip away from me like mud through a sieve (some of it stays, but not nearly enough). So don't be too surprised when I say I knew nothing about the Lebanese Civil War before today.
Apparently, it was bad. Very bad. I have no word strong enough to describe the horrible slaughter that this "civil" war brought. And that was before everyone started switching sides.

And now, they're making a movie about it.


Would it be too morbid if I said I wanted to see it?

Regardless, someone thought it was good. It made the nine-entry pre-pre-shortlist of the Foreign Films for this year's Oscars. If it was narrowed down from sixty-something other movies, I'd like to think there was something redeeming about it. (Then again, Pan's Labyrinth didn't get Best Picture last year... so maybe there's something wacked about the judging process. I hope not.)

This could bring up an entire debate about whether war movies should even be made. One country's suffering as another's entertainment sounds very distasteful, indeed. Then again, if the film is meant to depict exactly how horrifying the Lebanese Civil War truly was, maybe it can help more than it hurts.

In any case, I'll be scouring the Foreign Film section of Blockbuster for this one.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Huddle against the cold.
Fight the icy wind that
pierces like a knife.

If there is a sun behind the gray,
I cannot see it.
The blanket of clouds covers,
Push back the blanket
and let me breathe.

Spring will come
and the gray will go.
But for now,
I must wait
and hold my breath.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

There IS a Doctor in the House.

As of earlier today, there is an eleventh Doctor Who.

I'm excited... and a little blitzed. Maybe it's just because he's so freakin' young, but he looks like a guy I knew in high school.

Of course, with this news (which comes in the wake of a kicking awesome Christmas special) comes the expectation of David Tennant's regeneration in the next special, Planet of the Dead.
I haven't been into this show very long, mind you. The most recent season was already on TV when I started watching. I saw Nine's regeneration, but the knowledge of a very promising Ten was effective consolation.
I'm not sure how an attachment/adjustment to Ten will affect the viewing of the next special and beyond.

But I'm definitely excited about Eleven.

Oops. Totally forgot that Tennant is signed on for, I think, four specials, which will take his contract through the end of 2010.
Good Lord, I'll have graduated college before Eleven's adventures hit the screen. That's a scary thought.