May. 1st, 2009 10:33 am
jacktellslies: (bear girl)
My garden is small but good. My mother just gave me a gift of herbs growing in a pot far nicer than the ones I usually manage to salvage. I spent a couple of days recently cleaning up the abandoned lot next to my house. I found construction materials from the people who refurbished my house, cement and paint poured onto the ground, beer bottles and cans from neighbours, children's juice boxes, and useful things: bricks and cinder blocks I'm using for other projects, snail shells I kept, pretty bits of glass and metal, and enough empty and untorn trash bags to fit all of the junk that I cleaned up. And I found so many worms! My niece came to visit me one day, and we collected them in a cup and put them to work as slaves in the mines of my compost pit. The lot looks far better now. I plan to put down some pretty groundcover in the front part in hopes that it will prevent people from dumping things there again, and maybe building some raised beds in the back.

I had my first couch surfing guest come to stay with me. He is an American, from farther North than I am, and hoping to move to Philadelphia. He's a terribly sweet anarchist named Bobby who likes spending time in the sun on his roof, and writing poetry, and hoping to learn to build furniture so that he can move with almost nothing but tools and build what he needs when he gets here. We liked one another immediately. I took him on a walk through my city, almost an accident of good streets and local markets and parks on our way to meet some of my friends. He was so thrilled with all of it, and liked my tribe so much. The next day Whitney and I started to plan for our early Bealtaine celebration, and he joined us, first coming with us to our favourite stalls at Reading Terminal Market. Then we had a good adventure, searching for firewood in the city for the evening's bonfire. I wore a big backpack, and sticks and twigs and lumber stuck out of the top of it, making me look like a proud wicker man. We carried seed bombs with us while we explored, dry little balls of compost and clay and seeds, and tossed them into empty patches of dirt that needed some flowers to fill them. We collected huge quantities of moss, too, which I later fed to my blender along with beer and yogurt and sugar. We painted it on the walls of my back yard, sharing what was left of the beer, toasting with the moss. Now we mist it and wait for it to grow.

Bobby had to pack up and get on a bus before the party. That evening more friends came, and we lit a big fire with sparking pine branches and the things that we'd gathered. Whitney made a salad with strawberries, raw goats' milk cheese, excellent balsamic vinaigrette, and caramelised pecans. She made asparagus and mushrooms too. I always admire the local royal trumpets and oyster mushrooms at my market, but I usually settle for the far cheaper criminis. It was nice to finally have reason enough take a few of the fancy ones home.
jacktellslies: (circusfolk)
Beth and I have taken to laughing, "I get everything I want!" for those moments that manage to be irrationally perfect, more than you'd ever ask for piling around you all at once. And yesterday was better than that, a consistently and unreasonably lovely day. I'd stayed up late the night before dancing around a cauldron of glue in my oven room, a bulb burning directly over my head, my halo, my moon. And I woke up early, no reason but a hunch, and done with dreams. My suspicions were correct, and someone I'd been wanting was tangled in the aether cables. I hadn't known what it would call. There were crows above me, instantly, calling in a grey and writhing sky. There were three or five of them, when I've not seen crows in this part of the city in years, if ever. Obscenities, my only prayers, fell from my tongue like fairy gold turning to feathers.

I did yoga; I did not, so far as I can tell, shatter my spine. I'll proceed with caution. I'd quite like to return to it in earnest.

By the time I'd dressed it was nearly time to leave, but being occasionally irrational, I decided that I couldn't possibly be seen in public that day without a new hat. I found the streets of Philadelphia, my lover, boot to brick, moving in her in a fury of winds. Other people's sigils were burnt in the alleyways, mirrored cave paintings replaying my perfect morning and laughing, certainly correctly. I pouted and preened for myself in the shops and returned with something I liked.

I got to the park laden with fruits and red and white wine. I found friends there, beautiful ones, and we ate grapes from one another's chests and trousers like silly foul mouthed children. The trees insisted on joining in, covering us in spores and other spunk of the natural world. Tom, being even more of a true city-dweller than most of us, was unfamiliar with such obscenities and was terrified.

It is, I think, the nature of us veterans of the Fort to threaten as much as to flirt. But this being the first of spring, I think we may have outdone ourselves. It was filthy. We accused one another of vile things and promised one another worse. A running tally of my failings was kept by Winston Churchill (here represented by a delightful young bulldog, clearly drunk and a scrapper) and my dead father, drinking deep of the whiskeys of hell yet still unable to forget their unnumbered sins and disappointments made flesh and left to wander the streets in the form of yours truly. In our defence, for the first of spring it was a bit cold and the wind was cruel; we were fighting and flirting to stay warm. Eventually we were forced indoors for mystery beer, a charming custom of paying next to nothing for a surprise in a paper bag and a bottle. Sometimes it was quite good, but there was always the risk of falling victim to some of that mainstream American beer that tastes like a mixture of spit and the underside of the furniture in a fraternity. The waitress, being wise and just, only inflicted such indignities upon Tom.

I feel like I've left out some of the goodness, but I'm not sure I'd know how to convince all of it to fit. I don't know how one day managed it, still. But the winter is dead at last, and I'm hopeful that this day won't be the last of its kind.
jacktellslies: (emma goldman)
To whom it may concern:

I shall be dropping out of the gift-giving-and-receiving segment of the holidays again this year. I am fond of winter and the holidays that happen therein. However, I'm not exactly a Christian, and I'm certainly not much of a capitalist, so I'd rather not play that particular part of the game. I'll share gifts with my immediate family, and with a couple of close friends, but what I'd most like this year is to give a few exhausted sales people fifteen seconds during which to breathe. Thank you ever so much for your attention to this matter.

Yours always,


jacktellslies: (Default)

August 2009

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