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... and I had an entire lane to myself at the pool last night. Reminding my broody self of happy things, I am.

"Mile of Smiles" and "Wa' Is Me, What Mun I Do?" are still occupying a sizable section of the earworm bed in my brain. Here's "Mile of Smiles" at the April 1 Playford Ball. I'm not visible in most of it, but what a fine tune it is, and I did enjoy that nice set-and-turn with Joan around 4:13:

I reread my Lessons from Country Dancing sermon from 2009 a few days ago. Methinks it has held up pretty well, and reminded me of some things I'd forgotten.

Autumn Sky Poetry published Reading the Sky - a "quasinelle" I wrote for [personal profile] okrablossom last month. One of these years I'll regain some semblance of systematic self-promotion, but in the meantime, the sun is shining, my shoes...

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/140968.html.
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My week so far has included the rejection of eight poems (though one was a near-miss) and some aggravation (both of the near-to-firing-a-firm kind and the dammit-I-left-my-badge-on-the-piano variety), not to mention truly atrocious fantasy tennis results. But, I seem to be providing pleasure to assorted Kei Nishikori fans, there was plenty of butter and black pepper to mash into the neeps I boiled for supper, and I'm closing my evening with a glass of Beaujolais (slightly rough, but sanding down a bit of jag as I sip) and assorted phrases for pieces.

Also, Rattle published a poem on Sunday, both in text and audio form: "Look at that, you son of a bitch"

I also keep meaning to mention "Some Who Wander Become Lost," which the SFPA posted online a few months ago.

My calendars contain crossouts and calculations. So, for that matter, do the cards and scraps of paper containing what I might write or shape next. In the meantime, there are roses everywhere -- I saw these on Valentine's Day, just as I was about to cross White Station Road:

White Station Road, Memphis

The back of the card I picked up was blank. It has me wondering about roses not sent. It brings back memories of roses I have sent, and thrown, and pressed, and attempted to propagate (not yet successfully). Not every Emily Dickinson poem pairs up well with "Yellow Rose of Texas" ("So much of Heaven has gone from earth"? No), but it's not as if the ghosts of Amherst or Austin ever insisted on that. Perhaps the roses really want to grow. Perhaps the mallows will survive this morning's freezing fog. There is more than snow between the glass and the huge roses. There is more to work than work. Earlier this week, a colleague and I talked about trading plants later this year -- succulents for peppers. The dog knocked over one of my pots while I was away, and happily hoovered up asparagus stubs two nights ago. Cleaning. Digging. Dreaming.

A name for a new rose: Mozart.
That's what I'd call the first rose on the moon,
If I got there to grow it.

-- Robert Nye, "Travelling to My Second Marriage on the Day of the First Moonshot"

This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/126908.html.
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Rattle has just published as its Sunday poem "Look at that, you son of a bitch" (the title comes from the late astronaut Edgar Mitchell, who threw a javelin on the moon 45 years and a few days ago).

Meanwhile, I've been training my lens on tennis players in Memphis:


And, from the Department of Tennis Can Provide a Metaphor for Anything -- here's a glimpse of partners getting their signals scrambled...


(Oliver Marach of Austria and Fabrice Martin of France)

...and one of Kei Nishikori strrrrrretching (and sliding and squeaking) his way out of trouble (eventually -- between Sam Querrey's unreturnable serves and Kei's tendency to hit wide/long during the first half hour, it was not a good first set for him):

Nishikori v. Querrey

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/400653.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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[The subject line is from Lu Yu's "Autumn Thoughts," which Dawn Potter quotes at the end of her Thursday post.]

There is much going on that has been frustrating, frightening, or disheartening. But there has also been great happiness:

thirty years of friendship

My friend Daniel (left) was the groom at the wedding I attended in Brooklyn two weekends ago. We first met at a conference in 1985. (My honorary big brother, Steve, is the other guy in the photo. He was the officiant.)

My poem "O Clouds Unfold" has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

7x20 featured five pieces last week...


...as well as five pieces back in October:

Co-cola salad...
painting spells...
mother interred...
Persian calligraphy...
Code Name Taurus...

On a fandom note -- Peter Wimsey sighting, y'all! ...in a Soviet film poster currently at the Jewish Museum in New York. Which one of you is going to explain that? ;)

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/395980.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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The Cubs are inflicting the usual dose of October heartache/heartburn, so I'm going to pickle carrots instead. (There's also work to get through, but staying away from monitors for the next few innings seems like a good idea.)

There seems to be no escaping Thoreau today, albeit in texts that address the mythologizing of him. In Mark Caldwell's The Last Crusade: The War on Consumption, 1862-1954, his death from tuberculosis is presented as an example of a 19th-century tendency to cast such deaths as gentle, pure goings-into-the-good-night -- an erasure of what one could argue were the victims' true personalities (vigorous, worldly, earthy) when they were healthy. And Dawn Potter relays Katherine Schulz's observations about Thoreau, including thought-provoking comparisons of Walden to Prospect Park (neither being all that off the grid) and Thoreau to Laura Ingalls Wilder (fictional vs. real isolation).

(An extra layer to this, which I only just remembered: I'm attending a wedding later this year in Prospect Park... and the groom and the officiant and I participated together in a mock trial about thirty years ago where I was drafted to portray Thoreau. "But I haven't read any Thoreau." I forget how our classmates persuaded me that a quick trip to the library would give me enough to improvise with, but I vaguely recall them managing to make contrarian-ness sound like a compliment, and they later reassured me when my Thoreau turned out to be a terrible witness on behalf of Socrates [who was once again sentenced to death], because what I'd said as him was in character.)

Signal boost: 7x20 is seeking tweet-sized pieces by women and writers of color. Non-paying market.

On a related note, I'm the featured poet at 7x20 this week. So far:

Code Name Taurus...
Persian calligraphy

*peeks at scoreboard* FFS, Cubs. OK, I'm off to do some violence to root vegetables.

This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/395158.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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Upper Rubber Boot prompt 18: spokesman

My copy of Jim Ottaviani's Suspended in Language is on loan to a friend, so you get this instead:

18 - spokesman

Sir Mark Oliphant, in Ann Mozley Moyal's Portraits in Science:

I was a member of a group that was led by Niels Bohr, after the test in Alamogordo, that was very much against the use of this new weapon on civilian cities. Niels Bohr, who was our spokesman -- which was a pity in some ways, because his English wasn't good and [laughs] his wife told me his Danish was almost as bad -- but he became our spokesman and was very very good and persistent in his approach.

  • Wikipedia's Pauli effect entry, which links to my sonnet about same

  • A Particular Truth--1941 - on Bohr and Heisenberg

  • At Teaching Resources, which obtained it via Moving Poems, which features Nic Sebastian's take as well: Othniel Smith's video remix of "Playing Duets with Heisenberg's Ghost"

  • This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/117814.html.
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    Upper Rubber Boot Prompt 17: driving

    17. driving

    I have been working on the catalogue of next year's Italian car exhibition, so this book (the catalogue of an earlier exhibition curated by Ken Gross) has kept me company during some late nights the past month. This weekend's work-related reading is the catalogue for an exhibition about the House of Alba.

    In other news, Moonsick Magazine published my poem "Nowhere to Go" yesterday.

    The BYM came by for lunch, and then we went upstairs to the postcards exhibition. He was especially entertained by some of the Krampus cards, as well as a sexy Easter greeting.

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/117729.html.
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    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/114514.html.
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    When I first saw this tweet, I was like "huh"?

    ...since it showed up in my in-box before I'd seen what it was responding to:

    At any rate, I'm now saying "hmmmm..."

    not longer
    but stronger
    and stranger

    see how what
    you want to inhale
    sits just a letter
    or two
    or three

    apart from what
    your mouth
    first stretched
    toward drawing in

    not every balloon
    can glide toward escape

    not every breath
    will suffice for anchor

    but these are not
    reasons enough
    to abandon the study

    of possible ways
    to stay afloat

    balloonflower bud
    (Balloon flower about to bloom. More on those later.)

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/109042.html.
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    [subject line from Matthew Arnold's Lines Written in Kensington Gardens, which correspond to a UU hymn set to a Thomas Tallis canon that I often play when in need of solace]

    Asheville Art Museum mural
    (The Writing on the Pharaoh's Wall (detail), Gabriel Shaffer, Asheville Art Museum)

    Hello, new month
    of maybes, maybeings,
    and wish-I-mays now here --
    behold how bedecked
    you already are
    with swirls of stitchery

    already a diary
    of crossouts and detours
    and acronymed prayers
    and half-rehearsed words
    and words for rehearsals.

    To tally today:
    how many angels
    in toeshoes on
    the sparkling tips
    of pinwheel spokes?

    Any minute now
    the rules that you thought
    were to keep you in line

    will vault
    with a vehemence
    over the handlebars.

    O brace yourself
    for the many-tongued wind

    its whipsharp accents
    its cloudblurred vowels

    you will grapple for years
    with what it has to say to you.


    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/104979.html.
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    [Subject line from Chuck Berry's Memphis, Tennessee]

    Presley poodles
    Poodles at Graceland

    I'd like to be in Memphis. Or Morocco. Or Monterrey. Or Miami. Or Monticello. Or messing around my yard. But here in my kitchen is a pretty good place to be as well. The BYM and the dog were in here earlier, the tomato cuttings aren't dead yet, and I have poured for myself a glass of the wine [personal profile] dichroic sent in December, to go with the edamame-wasabi dip I just made.

    I am frustrated about a number of things, including not yet feeling well enough to sing or to resume practicing yoga, but happy happenings have been in abundance as well. The client to whom I delivered a commission this past Sunday was very pleased with it. ("We definitely got our money's worth.") I fashioned a pin for a friend while at the easel.

    The Poetry Storehouse now has audio for my poems "Novecento," "Schrodinger's Top Hat," "Even an Empty Life Can Hold Water," and "Lining Up." At Autumn Sky Poetry, Christine Klocek-Lim published my sestina "O Clouds Unfold" (which may look familiar to some of you, as I posted the first draft here just under a year ago). First Class accepted a poem.

    The lily in the bathroom has put forth new shoots. A longtime friend got married. My honorary mama celebrated her eighty-something-eth birthday. Mary sent a sprig from Wilbur's "Black Birch in Winter."

    And now I must turn back to paperwork and work-work.

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/100115.html.
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    Published last week: my little poem about Hari-Kuyo, a festival that honors broken needles. [bio]

    Seen on yesterday's walk (several blocks apart):

    East Nashville

    East Nashville

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/98180.html.
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    Last weekend's hard frost killed all the magnificent zinnias in front of my house, as expected, but to my surprise, one of the runts in the alley seems to be enjoying the cold:


    Some of the French hollyhocks and French marigolds are still in bloom, too. And the rogue rosebush -- as unpredictable as ever -- is showing off a fresh yellow bud amid the dead and wilted:

    also on the rogue rosebush rogue rose rogue rose

    I finally peeked at the seed exchange at the Inglewood branch of Nashville's public library. It was out of parsley, but I picked up packets for bok choy, chives, and three kinds of marigolds.

    Recent publications:
    "dicing up..." (tweet-sized poem) at 7x20
    "the resident ghost..." (tweet-sized poem) at 7x20
    "Ballad Breath" (audio and text versions) in Stone Telling 11

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/92238.html.
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    Prague, May 2009

    amid and above
    the trinkets and the trudging

    Prague, May 2009

    (Snapshots from a walk around Prague, 14 May 2009)

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/90952.html.

    fruit gone

    Sep. 14th, 2014 11:28 am
    pondhop: white jointed mannequin in glass door (Default)
    So, that tomato I mentioned yesterday? By the middle of the afternoon, it had vanished. I'm side-eyeing the dog something major right now.

    On a more productive note, I'm the featured poet at the Houseboat this week: one interview, ten poems, and assorted photos. This has been in the works for over a year, and it's gratifying to share at last what Rose has selected from the words and images I sent to her. My thanks to her for all of her work, and -- as ever and always -- to you for reading.

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/90255.html.


    Jul. 13th, 2014 08:43 am
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    For reals:
    grinding out some green

    Some other goings-on:

  • The 2015 Texas Poetry Calendar is now available. It includes my poem "Texas Instruments."

  • The Changeover published my essay "Accounting for Tennis Prize Money," and Sports Illustrated noticed.

  • Also now available: the 2014 Dwarf Stars anthology, which includes my poems "Even an Empty Life Can Hold Water," "Newest Amsterdam," and "Making Rice Dance."

  • Also, three rejections, the usual bug bites, half of my horses finishing third (which is useless when you're making win-place picks), and two hours in a waiting room with a TV on (but at least it was tuned to HGTV, which I find more tolerable than what's usually on). And a dress I bought just last month is not working out, but is already stained in multiple spots, so into the ragbag it went.

    But at least I figured the not-working-out on second wearing, which was a quicker scramble out of the denial swamp (aka making-do morass) than my usual wrangle with buyer's regret. Also, I won a gold medal in Green Acres (fantasy tennis tournament) and drafted a new poem on my phone while sipping a free glass of prosecco at a neighborhood bar. And now it's back to the drawing board...

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/86243.html.
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    container basil

    I wrapped up a big deliverable last night (yes, it was a US holiday, but you know what they say about freelancing -- you can work any 60 hours of the week you want...), and I have been correspondingly useless today -- which is okay, because there are worse fates than harvesting basil leaves for pesto while watching Wimbledon and ultimate frisbee on ESPN3.

    Also, my crush on Jody Adams continues:


    Something that leapt out from a recent NYT interview:

    Early on, some guy kept hitting on me and when I said I wouldn't go out with him, he said, "You must be a lesbian." A young stupid kid hit me on the butt, and I said, "Don't ever do that again." And he said, "You tempted me." I have no tolerance and I fight. We have to teach women to do that. The first time someone crosses the line, we have to stand up and say, don't do that.

    I don't know if I can get myself to Boston next June (the Early Music Festival is producing three Monteverdi operas, and a friend just announced the birth of his third child, and I haven't seen [personal profile] marginaliana since 2008, and ... the reasons are plenty, but we'll have to see how all the other moving parts shake out), but Rialto/Trade are definitely on the list. In the meantime, the blog produced by Jody and her husband is a splendid thing, and I hope to make the kale salad with plums, roquefort and walnuts soon.

    In writing news, I just received my contributor's copy of the 2015 Texas Poetry Calendar, which includes my poem "Texas Instruments" (which, being a poem about my daddy, appropriately appears opposite the page for the week of Father's Day). Whee!

    This entry was originally posted at http://bronze-ribbons.dreamwidth.org/381182.html. I see comments at DW, IJ, and LJ (when notifications are working, anyway), but not on feeds.
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    1. My poem Spelling "For Worse" is up at Goblin Fruit, in both text and audio formats.

    1a. I am keeping right fine company on that TOC. :-)

    2. Merrie Haskell wrote a novel called Castle behind Thorns. It's about to emerge, it has earned a starred review in Publisher's Weekly, and it will be a Junior Literary Guild selection. (Her second published novel has been collecting recommendations and awards, too, including "the 2014 Schneider Family Book Award winner for middle school for its depiction of a person with a disability.")

    3. The Velveteen Rabbi will be reading her poetry in Jerusalem. I am so excited for her!

    4. Making manuscripts reader-friendlier. Go me!

    4a. Having the chops and experience to recognize typos (especially in Spanish) I wouldn't have caught five years ago.

    5. Ripe cantaloupe and canned quail eggs. For when one works flat through dinner and then needs something that doesn't require cooking (i.e., stink up the kitchen) right before bedtime.

    6. The sumo tangerine I picked up at a store last week. It was an indulgence, but it was also a great conversation piece, and I am about to candy the peel.

    7. Having a dog that gleefully hoovers up vegetable scraps. (I am less enamored of her fondness for snacking on potting soil, but that's because it makes her wheeze.)

    8. It is sunny and 55 F here right now. I'll be spending most of the day with spreadsheets, but I think I'll first sneak out for a walk.

    9. Particle Fever! (And yes, I wore my CERN jacket to the showing.)

    This entry was originally posted at http://zirconium.dreamwidth.org/78122.html.


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