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Les Semaines

99.02.28

what I'm thinking and doing § what I'm listening to § what I'm reading
what I'm writing § retrospective: The Phonosnout

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Cold Rainy Windy Night

We've been having many of these recently--about a third more rain than we have most years, and I wouldn't be surprised if we also were having more windstorms. I love this weather (yes, that's why I still live in this climate) but even I was delighted at the two long sunny breaks we had today. Not that I did much with them, other than watch the cats bask and bask a little myself.

I used to love to go out and walk in the woods during rainstorms, but there aren't woods convenient to where I live anymore. I miss that. It was wonderful growing up with bits of forest behind the house; even if the patch of trees wasn't very big it always felt big when you couldn't see the next house through it. Almost magical, as though if you found the right path it would go on forever, long past the place where the next subdivision *should* begin.

Maybe growing up in places like that and all the magic stories that were read to me and that I read for myself are why I love the mythic world so much, in poetry and in fiction. Why I believe in the magic of things, and never quite believe that a stone is just a stone.

Typing in this week's Phonosnout I was struck by the sense I had then of waiting so anxiously for things to happen. I remember that feeling so well--half boredom, half frustration that the world just won't behave yet as you want it to and you're not quite ready to go out and make it happen for you. That time when it feels like you're waiting for your life to start. That's what high school is, and this week's Phonosnout entry is thick with it. That wanting, waiting for something--anything--to happen.

I'm glad I'm not there anymore. I always feel now like my life *is* happening. Sure plenty of it has already happened, but I don't expect boredom to set in or my life to shut down, even though I may not be as ready for Wild Adventure as I once was, or at least not in the same way.

Adventures are less superficial, less plot-oriented now and more character- and thought-oriented. Is that growing up? Is that the beginning of wisdom or something more frightful?

I read a lot of online journals, and I'm amazed at how many of the writers also seem to be waiting for their lives to happen. It must be something with being not that much beyond high school, though of course many of them are older, too, and different kinds of things happen then.

A friend wrote about my journal how good it must be to have all this time to read and write and listen to music. It doesn't feel like much time to me at all, but I suppose it does and is good. I haven't left the house since I got home from work on Friday, but this is more a function of feeling surgically attached to my heating pad this weekend rather than anything else. Or maybe it's just that in the last few years I've felt more and more that I enjoy time at home in a way I haven't since I was very young. Home is where I can work my own magic, creating the life I want to live in with books and music and writing my own worlds.

last week's thinking and doing § next week's thinking and doing

Listening

Who would have thunk it? Björk has a vocal twin, bloem de ligny from The Netherlands. I got her disc this week from a friend in The Netherlands and have been listening to it. There's one dancey tune, but overall it's what Björk would sound like if she were doing less dancey stuff. This album, zink, stays more in the alternarock with electronics area. I worry that I should be more disturbed how much her vocal style imitates Björk--I mean, I can't imagine a review that wouldn't discuss the similarity--but I find myself just enjoying the album, maybe as much as I enjoy Björk's.

Also been listening to a disc I got last year but that got set aside: becki di gregorio's Seven worthies... that I had bought on spec when browsing audio sample files at the wonderful Harmony Ridge site. She somehow sounds a lot like Linda Thompson to me vocally, though the musical style is not particularly similar.

And because I've been having arguments on the ecto list about Pepper Acton's piano playing I've been listening to her marrow again. I still think she's a wonderfully evocative pianist. So there.

last week's listening § next week's listening

Reading

Tried another Stephanie A. Smith, this a young adult novel, and I must say I enjoyed it far more than Other Nature (see last week's reading for my comments on that) and thought she did an especially good job of the characters. I realized that one of her strengths in the other novel I appreciated better in this because of the characters--she proves herself good in both these book as creating an interesting, different, and believable world. Anyway, the title of the book I liked was Snow-Eyes. My only negative thought about this book was that it really felt like a book that would have a sequel--felt not quite finished--or maybe I just wasn't ready to leave the characters and world.

Also, read two books by Janet Kagan: Hellspark and Mirabile. I've seen lots of recommendations for her work on the net over the years, and finally got copies of her books. I've glad I did--they're not earthshattering works, but are delightful. Warm characters, intriguing plot set-ups and new worlds. Wonderfully enjoyable, and great for windy, rainy days.

last week's reading § next week's reading

Writing

Another distraction: I finally got the grants done with all their little ducks and pages in a row, and now I've had to start a desktop publishing project--every year I put together a book for the Living Archives series of the Feminist Caucus of The League of Canadian Poets. Basically revised versions of papers presented at the previous year's annual meeting. This year seems a little more complicated than usual, so it's taking me a few days longer than I'd hoped.

But I still got sidelined by a new story, a short short. I was in the shower getting ready for work on Thursday morning, when a conversation started forming in my head, so I immediately went to the computer (well, not *quite* immediately) and tried to get it down. Funny how much of it was already lost, but I've been tinkering with ever since, and while I'm still fussing with the end, I have a new short story to work on finishing and getting right.

And I'm proud of myself--a poetry submission came back and I got it right back out the door with 24 hours. Maybe I'll get back into good habits again about keeping the poetry out in the mail.

last week's writing § next week's writing

Retrospective: The Phonosnout

About the Phonosnout

Winter 1974

78. Nothing's Happened

Well, not a lot has happened. My weekend definitely wasn't rowdy. Unless there's something rowdy about sitting around, taking a friend (Cindy) to a movie, and driving your grandmother around. I think the excitement is killing me. Oh well. At least next weekend Laura's friend is coming back with another friend. That should be Most Interesting.

79. I Just Found Out

Guess what! I just found out they won't be coming for a while. Great. I'll have another exciting weekend. Massive trauma and a double block of poetry. Beethoven horray (In poetry we listen to him? (Constantly.)

80. How Depressing/or: The Weather

It's been snowing lately, but melting into ugly slush. The sky is leaden gray and the rain turns to snow, and that to slush. Ugh! But! But! Every once in a while the sky clears, and it's blue, and the sun shines on the rain drops.

81. Dawn say something

Nancy1, I certainly hope that in years to come you will realize there is more to your life than always putting yourself down. And becoming like me in poetry and not listening. The whole scene is school right now, and beginning to mold not only our mind but ambitions, also. It rolls around in our souls like syllables and metaphors in a speech...after all, isn't that the whole idea? One day we'll realize...I don't know what, but we'll all realize...! Don't say I didn't say anything. Love, Dawn.

82. Thanks, Dawn

I thank you, Dawn. I never realized i was putting myself down. I know how fantastic i am. I didn't mean that good!!! hah-hah-hee-hee-hee-haw!

83. Just Another Day

Today (yes it's another day) is going to be different. I hope it's going to be interesting. Most days are pretty dead. One of these days i'm going to have had enough and am going to make everyday interesting. Most likely when i'm free of this place called school. Why don't they give us a chance out in the world? I think we'd learn a lot more.2

84. Funny

It's funny. Some of this stuff in Bile-ology is really interesting, and some if it is so boring i could scream. Wow. That "wow" didn't belong there, i just felt like saying it, so. Wow. This is really getting sort of strange, but better strange than boring. Strange is at least interesting.

85. Field Trip

In the legislature, that's where i am. Or rather, i was. I wrote that sentence yesterday. To make this even more complicated, i'm rewriting this 'cause the first time i wrote it was in pencil, and that hadn't happened since Mother mused in "Mother's Musings". Anyway, about the Legislature buildings, i had to go there yesterday on a field trip for Socials. It was thril-ling. Carry the "l-l".


NOTES

1. Ugh! That name again! (Actually, I don't hate it, it just doesn't seem to have much to do with me.

2. And be even more bored and anxious to get out of it. Sigh. If only I'd known.

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