green_dreams: Teddy bear wielding wooden sword to fight off terrible monster. (fnoo)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders Fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders Fields.

- John McCrae
      Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.


- Wilfred Owen

Nine.

May. 25th, 2016 10:52 am
green_dreams: (Piper looking noble)
This is not a drill. There are 41 years left on the duration. Nine have elapsed.

As I've said before, I feel warranties should come with an extension.

Much love on this glorious 25th of May.
green_dreams: Sepia-toned picture of a dog, with the caption "Will reload saves for Dogmeat." (will reload for Dogmeat)
(I initially thought about just saying "42!" Which would be the answer to why I am happy, but comes with a whole lot of unrelated associations.)

But yes. Eight years.

Best decision I ever made.
green_dreams: Teddy bear wielding wooden sword to fight off terrible monster. (fnoo)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders Fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders Fields.

- John McCrae
      Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.


- Wilfred Owen
green_dreams: Teddy bear wielding wooden sword to fight off terrible monster. (because my heart is pure)
Okay. Nearly ready. Plans for today, relating to travel, are "pack". I need to add one set of clothes, plus something nice for the Hugos. (Probably just a dressier than usual top; there is a certain shrug-and-carry-on[1] freedom to living out of a bag for most of a week.)

I need to copy out my travel information, and clean out my wallet.

Chargers, toiletries, passport, candied ginger, caffeinated chocolate. Refill on Starbucks card. Travel packets of laundry soap (yes, the hotel has laundry service, but in case). E-reader.

Laptop.

Finalized con schedule.

Possibles: a book I am thinking of getting signed. A camera. My knitting.
---
[1] Not intended to be a reference to a carry-on bag, but hey.
green_dreams: Teddy bear wielding wooden sword to fight off terrible monster. (idealistic teddy bear)
Seven years ago today.

We had silk lilacs at the ceremony, because plant lilacs are just terrible for everyone's allergies.

Seven years and I don't think I could have made a better decision.

To unused warranties.
green_dreams: (November 11)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders Fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders Fields.

- John McCrae
      Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.


- Wilfred Owen
green_dreams: (Lilith photoshop)
Jack Vance died today.
"A golden witch named Lith has come to live on Thamber Meadow. She is quiet and very beautiful."
I'm... this is so odd to say, but I'm offended. It's Jack Vance. He's been there forever. He's-- not an institution, but a cornerstone. He shouldn't die.
"Return, young man, return--lest your body lie here in its green cloak to rot on the flagstones."
I remember the first story I read by him, "Liane the Wayfarer". There was (in addition to a flatly horrible protagonist), an unapologetic and very simple sense of wonder. A willingness to put in fantastic elements, and not overexplain them, and have the reader pick up a very great deal from context.

Plus, you know, really creepy moments that I still love a great deal.
"I am Chun the Unavoidable."
The gentleman will be missed, and I am glad he was around.
green_dreams: (lilac 25th may)
12 percent done, 88 to go, and I feel warranties should come with an extension.

I married an eloquent, you know. Much love.
green_dreams: (...crap)
Ray Harryhausen died today, less than eight weeks shy of his 94th birthday.

(First thought, when I got the news, was remembering hearing that he and Bradbury went to the movies together as kids.)

And I'm sitting here, remembering Clash of the Titans a little vaguely, and the skeletons[1] much more clearly. Not as cool for me as I guess it must have been for the people who first saw them, but damn that was something.

(Upon reflection, I think we may actually have gotten shown some of those movies in class when I was a kid. In a section on Greek myths or ancient history or something. Which would be odd, but I guess not totally unreasonable.)

Feeling a little stunned, not that he'd been working lately and his work is now gone, but that he's not there anymore. I grew up knowing he'd always been around, you know? And he wasn't Bradbury or Eisner to me, but it feels very strange to hear that he died.

RIP.
---
[1] From Jason and the Argonauts. Come on, I cannot be the only one who remembers that...
green_dreams: Books, and coffee cup with "Happiness is a cup of coffee and a really good book" on the side. (Default)
First, if I can help, please let me know. Please? I'm checking in, but I can't see everything.

Third, I am am afraid I am quite tipsy. It's a strange soft feeling, and not unpleasant. It's a bit unnerving; I am not at all used to being this tipsy.[1] I keep getting the urge to read the Ramsey Campbell-based Chaosium mythos supplement, for some reason.[2]

Last, the unicorn; The Last Unicorn. Because someone said they didn't understand the appeal, and I get that they don't get it, but that's not the point. And [personal profile] theweaselking and I were talking about it to them and to each other and then he played the opening music, and I cried, and it wasn't in a bad way and we are watching it now.

I do not say it is a movie immune from criticism, but for me it is not "brilliant" or "terrible". It operates on an alternate criteria stream.[3] Cut for... schmaltz? But okay. ) I hope you are well. I hope you and yours are well, and you are taking care and being taken care of, and I wish you only the best. Let me know if I can help.
---
[1] Sample dialogue, petting the cat: "Her eyes are very green. Her eyes are green as limes, which is how Poppy Z. Brite described the eyes of the vampire Zillah in her first novel which I can't remember the name of but it wasn't Drawing Blood. Also, Z is for Zillah who drank lye by mistake in the Gashlycrumb Tinies."
[2] It sort of makes me a teeny bit sad how few people I expect to follow that statement.
[3] I have been using Leverage as a comparison point for everything from Game of Thrones to The Last Unicorn tonight. It is for me a show about handling cruelty with grace and compassion and wit, and making amends, and balancing scales. It is a good collection of stories.
green_dreams: (November 11)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders Fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders Fields.

- John McCrae
   Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.


- Wilfred Owen
green_dreams: (telling stories - trust me)
Ray Bradbury's dead.

The Hallowe'en Tree was my first favourite book. Ever. Stendahl's home on Mars, the recreation of the House of Usher, still makes me grin--pretty rare, I like to think, now that I've grown past revenge fantasy mua-ha-ha. The Elliot family, Ceci, Uncle Einar; the man who walked alone at night; the Illustrated Man; Charles Halloway. Oh, damn, Charles Halloway. The Dust Witch. The woman crying when the TV was turned off and the book was read.

(I'd forgotten it was "Dover Beach" specifically.)

I heard at quarter to noon.

I really can't think of anything else to say.

1827 days.

May. 25th, 2012 11:30 am
green_dreams: (lilacs bright may 25th)
To paraphrase what someone once said better, it's really incredible how wonderful the idea of fifty years can be.

Five years in, and the reality's living up to the idea.

I love you, John.

(I know, I know, you've still got the receipt. ;) )
green_dreams: (telling stories - trust me)
Under the wide and starry sky,
Dig the grave and let me lie.
Glad did I live and gladly die,
And I laid me down with a will.

This be the verse you 'grave for me:
Here lies he where he longed to be;
Home is the sailor, home from the sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.

- Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) "Requiem"; changed to reflect my father's recollection
green_dreams: (we're all mad here)
Got to see Oliver today at the NAC. :) It's a preview show, which means they let the audience in, but the director and people are sitting in front taking notes on what needs changing, and the real real show isn't on until Friday. Dress rehearsal writ large.

Pros: Nancy. Also Fagin and Charley, but Nancy was amazing. She was less starry-eyed than I've seen her played before[1], and it made "As Long As He Needs Me" a lot more touching; I hadn't noticed the line When someone needs you,/You love them so quite so clearly before, or started to unpack it. It was much more a portrayal of a codependant adult than an ingenue.

Also, they had a magician consultant listed in the program (I will check the exact title shortly); I had no idea why, until "You've Got To Pick a Pocket or Two", when there were silk scarves appearing and disappearing all over the stage, plus Dodger flicking a silk scarf up and suddenly holding a cane in "I'd Do Anything", as if the fabric had unfolded into one. Seriously impressive, especially sitting in the fourth row from the stage. (Charley was doing most of it, I think; I actually went looking at the program expecting to find that he'd been the magician consultant.)

Cons: Casting an adult as Oliver made it a bit harder to swallow some of the lines, particularly the ones that refer to how small he is, and it was weird to see Dodger as smaller and slighter than Oliver, although the actress handled it really well. And I found that the mob scene and Bill's death were rather quick and flat.

(A note: the last performance of Oliver that I saw involved Bill Sykes running from the maddened mob, a light-and-shadow show, and him eventually falling from a rookery, getting tangled in some lines hanging therefrom, and strangling. Yes, onstage. It's hard to top that.)

Flipside, the lingering on Charley and Bet picking up Nancy's body to take it away was well-done. The program included a rather grim photo of group of children (identified only as "from the period"), and the tone of the picture--which I can, at the moment, only describe as being worn and possibly foredoomed--was notably not absent from the play. I mean, it didn't overwhelm it--I can't actually imagine a grim and foredoomed rendition of "You've Got to Pick a Pocket or Two"[2]--but it was there. Clearly not a setting where the greatest complaint children have is that the gruel is bland and a bit sparse, you know?

I was also rather surprised the Bill Sykes didn't show up until the second act. Apparently that's not unusual, so I suppose that's more a reflection of how much the relationship between Bill and Nancy impressed me--has always impressed me about the story--than anything unusual about the staging.
---
[1] ...and it's beginning to occur to me that I've seen two performances of Oliver, but never the movie. May look into that, since my father-in-law was observing that he thought the choreography was very like the movie.
[2] Okay, now I can. But I couldn't before, and it's still jarring.
green_dreams: Books, and coffee cup with "Happiness is a cup of coffee and a really good book" on the side. (coffee and a book)
We were over at John's parents' for dinner. His dad is an amateur genealogist[1], and he plugged my dad's name and birth date into the program he uses. (From what I have garnered, it is a loose cloud of information floating somewhere in the intern(et)her. You build your family tree there, other people build theirs, if the two of you happen to have a common point then the data which you've chosen to make public can overlap.)

Someone else had already created an entry for someone who could have been my dad--a couple of data points met--and it included a picture, so I got called over to take a look at it.

It was him.

It was weird.

It was taken in the mid-late 40s, I guess; the scan[2] is greyscale and not very big. You can make out four candles on the cake balanced on his knees (birthday picture, is the guess), but he's clearly way more than four. I looked at it for a second, and I couldn't say one way or the other if it was dad, and then there was this realization that I'd seen that expression on his face before, that exact expression, and I felt...

I want to say stunned, but that's really not right. It's too strong. Taken aback, maybe, and pleasantly surprised.

Part of it was understanding that someone else knew about him; someone I'd never had reason to imagine existed found a picture of him and figured out or was told who he was. Part of it was that he looked happy.

(Also I have now learnt my paternal grandmother's names, and picked up a smidgen of detail about the trip she took to come over from Italy.)

It was a pretty good early-Christmas dinner evening, all told.
---
[1] Do you get professional genealogists? I suppose you could, but somehow I suspect I'd default to thinking of them as historians.
[1] I had a moment of thinking "Am I sure it was a scan?" and then being slightly disconcerted to realize that yes, of course I am sure. Digital pictures were so not an option at that point, after all.
green_dreams: (November 11)
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders Fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders Fields.

- John McCrae
   Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned out backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame, all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.

Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!--An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams before my helpless sight
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin,
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs
Bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.


- Wilfred Owen

Exhausted.

Nov. 10th, 2011 12:56 am
green_dreams: (Spider Jerusalem suicide)
In the name of not being utterly out of it, or something...

* surgery on relative seems to have gone well, yay.
* work. So tired.
* Canada's Penitentiary Museum in Kingston got my name right. Three times. They are awesome. I have a little laminated card.
* a collection of stories about the Ivybridge family is coming out next year. For those of you who don't know them, may I recommend the Historical Lovecraft anthology?
* oh lord, I still need to turn over the laundry.
green_dreams: A green picture of a rainy city street at night in the rain. (rainy night)
Scottish crime writer's night as part of the international writer's festival tonight. I had a lovely time. :D

Stuart MacBride, who was the author whose name caught my attention in the first place, is very funny in pretty much exactly the way you'd expect a man who writes gritty (and/or morbidly cheerful--Jenn, don't click that link) stories about serial killers to be. He read the short story I just linked, too; said it was the first time he'd read it for an audience. He signed my copies of halfhead and Flesh House, and seemed pleased to hear I'd liked halfhead. Apparently he got a lot of grief for writing something that wasn't in the series he's best known for; I think that's a serious shame, as it was a good book and a damn fun story.

Ian Rankin I had heard of and read before; Denise Mina I hadn't. I'm rather regretting the last, now; I would have picked up her book The End of Wasp Season if I weren't on that strict self-imposed moratorium of Only One More Book This Year Dammit.
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