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Les Semaines

99.11.21

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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Sick but Happy

I have a horrible cold, the type you mostly sleep through except when your coughing wakes you up, so this is going to be really short.I hate talking a lot about being sick because it's mostly boring, and besides it's just a cold. Sure is annoying when you have it, though. My computer is sick, too, and I spent two days backing it all up, reformatting the hard drive, then putting it back together. Those are the sick parts.

So, okay, let's get to the happy part. I got a letter on Monday accepting Blood Memory for publication, maybe by May and at the latest by next fall. I'm very excited: for the book to be accepted, and so soon after I finally finished it, and to be published so soon. Wow, it's almost too good to be true, and I really like the idea of it coming out in 2000. Copyright 2000 sounds wonderful, and so 2000 really will mark some kind of closure for me.

More details when the contract is signed, but be happy for me, okay?

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

Listening

As predicted, I spent most of the week listening to Ani Difranco's to the teeth, which is a return to power and form for me after not liking her last two discs as much as I liked Dilate and Living in Clip. to the teeth is fierce and lively and creative in a way that those last two only seemed in patches to me.

Fiona Apple's When the Pawn... shows growth and it's wonderfully produced (not overdone, which is what I feared). It seems a little more focused than Tidal, but just as strong.

Heather Duby's post to wire has some really lovely moments. She's doing similar things to Kym Brown, but in a prettier, more dreamlike 4AD-way. Though there are a couple of times where it's a little too sweet for me, it's mostly pretty listenable and intriguingly produced. She has a lovely Sarah McLachlan-like voice and on one song really sounds like Jane Siberry's mid-career work. I'm she's not the stuff of utter obsession than Kym Brown has been for me, I still really like post to wire.

last week's listening § next week's listening

Reading

Read another novel by Paul Russell, Sea of Tranquillity, which I liked quite a lot, though not as much The Coming Storm. Here I just didn't like or believe in the characters as much, so I wasn't as hooked in with them. Still, it was well-written and effective, if it seemed somehow a little idealistic. This is mostly about a magical young gay man (not magical in the speculative fiction sense, but in the sense that he was the kind of person people are drawn to and remember) and his astronaut father, his alcoholic mother, his teenage lover who is the son of a Christian Fundamentalist family and their lovers and friends. There is quite a gap between their teenage years and then their adult years, which was hard to build and especially made the connection with the characters a little jarring.

I also read a wonderful young adult novel, Skellig by David Almond, which was very real and very magical both, reminding me of the best of Alan Garner and William Mayne. It's about a young boy whose family has just moved to a new house and plan to get it ready before they have a new baby, but the baby comes early and isn't well, and in the meantime their lives are complicated as well by the unfinished house and the boy finds a strange man in the crumbling garage. A wonderful book I want to re-read when my head is clearer.

last week's reading § next week's reading

Writing

Celebrating, then sleeping. But not writing, no not yet. Pretty soon not now.

last week's writing § next week's writing

Retrospective: The Phonosnout

About the Phonosnout

May 1976

421. A coupla days later

It sa coupla days later now, parents home, rowdy, learning, dying, living, long weekend over. Rats. Wish that it would last forever. Please give us another longer weekend. So sick of time wasted in school. Wanna get out and live. Please, please, please. Only three weeks left. Can hardly wait. Then time to start something new. Time to start loneliness. Paul will be away almost all summer. Sigh.

422. Personally speaking

Personally speaking, i never liked love poems. Too commercial, too common. Try poeting something different (and now for something complete different). But, since Paul, all i've been writing is love poems. How depressing. But that's where my head's (heart's) at, and i couldn't change it even if i wanted to. However much i don't want to admit it, i like love poems.

423. Lost country

Have you ever been in the lost country? It's a country of green and mist, rounded hills, rock buried in moss. Sky misty blue, cloud-crowded. Forests lie by, watch and wait. (For me?) Can you see it? Have you been there, or would you even like to visit? (Paul?)

424. Why do seagulls have to go to school? by Janine

Why do seagulls have to got to school? I long to be set free into sun and summer, laugh and love. Life is going to change soon, i will be different, yet the same. Have you ever climbed a mountain?--what a feeling. Nanc I forgot a title, oh well you make one up. Do you love Paul, Nancy? Love is good but sometimes it hurts. I have love but no one to give it to. It makes me lonely but still I'm contented and there will be someone someday.

425. Oh, Phono

I'm all alone and lonely tonight. (Sad night, sad me.) I haven't seen Paul since the day before yesterday and i won't see him until late tomorrow night. I miss him, and feel empty inside, torn and hurt. Beset by doubts. (Am i allowed? We haven't even been going out three weeks yet!) So sad, so sad, i want to see you so bad(ly). Thief! Did he take part of me with him? How dare he! (I admit it, i gave it to him, but i never thought he'd keep it.)

426. Curled up

I'm curled up on my "chesterfield"1 (an old rollaway bed), listening to Graham Kendricks2, missing Paul. Hurting 'cause he's not here. So strange, new emotional sensations, never there before, the sorrow part of joy that touches all. Understand? Huh? The Lord obviously gave me Paul so i could learn. Lord, i'm learning. Are these growing pains? ...Speaking of love (am i?) well, i'm not hiding from His anymore, alt least not as much. I know i'll always hide from love.

427. And dying

And dying? That too? --Yes, i'm slowly killing off the rest of myself that should have died over a year ago. I am a slow learning, but at least i learn. Paul phoned me twice yesterday and twice today. I'm learning about that, too. Phones and i have never gotten along well. I like to see who i'm talking to, what their reactions are. Hate talking on telephones, but if it's the only way i'll hear Paul's voice... i'll learn.

428. What a long day

This day has seemed so long already seconds tick by so slowly, i can hardly believe it. I have so many hours to wait. First waiting for lunch (in Lit now) then for Block G Drama (not 'til 2:15) then for 3:15 and home, then for Paul's phone call, then for dinner, then for 7:30, time to leave for Seed meeting which is at 8:00, then for Paul to arrive at Seed. That's a lot of waiting for one day. And a long day at that.

429. Don't ask me (Mustard Seed Muse)

Don't ask me, i'm just the Mustard Seed Muse (Phonosnout Muse?)3 As me no question.... The poet (me?) becomes part of his (her?) pen. Drowning in the ink (me!). My pen possesses, i have no possession of my word, they all belong to my pen. Timeless pen, what words flow?

430. Evening-waiting

Evening-waiting, i'm waiting for nightfall, when a shroud of darkness will cover the world, and i'll see Paul. Anticipation! It seems like he's been gone forever, haven't seen him for many year. Only two days! It seems unreal, i can hardly believe it. Time is all messed up for me. It works so slowly, and sometimes even ties itself in knots that are not to be untangled, and lie silently in a pool of water.


NOTES

1. The term we used for couch/sofa.

2. A Christian rock singer

3. Riffing off Jethro Tull's "Baker Street Muse"

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