Note to Self

Jun. 27th, 2017 09:24 am
redsixwing: Red-winged angel staring at a distant star. (Default)
[personal profile] redsixwing
food )

Mama Robin

Jun. 27th, 2017 08:55 am
shadowycat: (Butterfly)
[personal profile] shadowycat posting in [community profile] common_nature
 photo DSCN2264_zpsm47grdsw.jpg

A mama robin has taken up residence in a nest in a tree next to my back patio. The nest was occupied last year by a robin, too. Of course, there's no way to know if it's the same robin sitting there now as sat there last year. Regardless, I was surprised to see the nest occupied again. I didn't think robins did that sort of recycling. From what I was able to find on the subject, it's not common but does happen occasionally. Has anyone else seen this sort of reuse of old nests?

Water-Powered Robots

Jun. 27th, 2017 05:14 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
These robots crawl or grasp based on humidity rather than a conventional power source. 

Monday Yardening

Jun. 26th, 2017 05:31 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today is beautiful, mostly cloudy, breezy and cool.  :D  

Round 1, I took pictures and planted morning glory seeds.

Round 2, I transplanted some wild morning glories and started clearing weeds and brush around the purple-and-white garden. 

Round 3, I sowed more grass seed in the bare patch.  There is a chance of rain tonight.   I also cut more brush around the purple-and-white garden.  It's about half done now, I think.

Round 4, I cut more brush around the purple-and-white garden.  It's about 3/4 done, although I'll probably need to go back and touch up parts later.  It already looks a lot better though.

Monday Update 6-26-17

Jun. 26th, 2017 02:49 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
These are some posts from the later part of last week in case you missed them:
Poem: "Uncertain Miracles"
Sunday Yardening
Litha
Saturday Yardening
Super-Queers
Garden Photos 6-22-17 Flowers
Garden Photos 6-22-17 Nests
Thursday Yardening
Poem: "One Familiar with Self-Defense"
Hard Things
Garden Photos 6-19-17 Flowers
Garden Photos 6-19-17 Birds


This week's half-price sale in Polychrome Heroics had only modest participation, despite having the quarter-price option. However, I do have one donor who's still picking out poetry for funds already sent, so there will be something more.


Poetry in Microfunding:
"A Hope and a Promise" belongs to Polychrome Heroics and has 15 new verses.  Aidan and Mrs. Ozenne talk more about Saraphina as she interacts with another toddler.  "Essential for Human Survival" belongs to Polychrome Heroics: Cassandra and has 11 new verses.  Groundhog and Cassandra encounter one of the monks. "The Inner Transition" belongs to Polychrome Heroics: Berettaflies.  Valor's Widow finds out what Stylet has in his backpack.  

Weather has been cooler and pleasant here.  The nest of baby robins fledged!  :D  The cardinal nest lost its egg.  :(  Currently blooming: dandelions, carnations, marigolds, petunias, lantana, million bells, snapdragons, zinnias, firecracker plant, torenia, yarrow, white and red clover, penstemon, daylilies, rose campion, coreopsis, morning glories, aster, spiderwort, echinacea, golden rain tree.  Mulberries and black raspberries are winding down.
ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Middle East meets Hispanic in this epic dessert.  This?  This is why we need multiculturalism.  *DROOL, SLOBBER* 

Poem: "Uncertain Miracles"

Jun. 25th, 2017 04:59 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This poem is spillover from the January 5, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] daisiesrockalot and [personal profile] dialecticdreamer. It also fills the "transformation" square in my 1-1-17 card for the Dark Fantasy Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics, directly following "Insha'Allah" so read that one first or this will make no sense.

WARNING: This poem contains topics that many readers may find disturbing. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. Patches and Rampart help Buraq find Haboob to use miracles to make him stop being a supervillain. This includes a manhunt, terrorist activity, Buraq getting shot, messy medical details of a serious bullet wound, flashback to prior injury, the bad guys fragging their own sniper for violating medical neutrality, taking items from a corpse as a point of positive etiquette, teleporting while injured is no fun for anyone, kidnapping Haboob and fixing him by force, when you apply miracles to a terrorist it kind of sounds like you're torturing him, and not everyone is comfortable with this, dubious consent once Haboob starts to regain some sanity, distressing inability to pray in the customary manner, but Buraq is creative with solutions and it works fine in the end, another overwhelming prayer experience ending in a faint that scares the team healer, traumatic guilt, renaming, radical forgiveness of a divinely repaired terrorist, miracles have a blest radius of extra healing, loss of homeland, austere living conditions, feeling unclean, but fortunately Buraq knows how to fix that, uncertainty, and other challenges. On the whole, however, everyone is better off in the end. Because this poem contains a major plot development in world politics, skipping it would leave a gap, even though it doesn't fall into main storylines. Please consider your tastes and headspace before deciding whether this is something you wish to read.

Read more... )

Describing Set

Jun. 25th, 2017 07:42 pm
redheart: (Default)
[personal profile] redheart

Originally published at Ekunyi's Embers. You can comment here or there.

The apartment is quiet after a wonderful weekend with members of my spiritual family. We gathered to celebrate the Feast of the Beautiful Reunion, a personal favorite holiday of mine for several reasons. For one, my own anniversary often falls during this joyous festival, which is a lovely coincidence. I also deeply care for both Hethert and Heru-wer as deities I share a Beloved relationship with in my Kemetic tradition, and appreciate that Her return offers a wonderful chance to re-focus on the many forms of love we experience in our lives, celebrating the divine couple and our own relationships with music and fellowship.

During the gathering, as is often the case with individuals who mostly interact online, we stayed up late into the night just talking about our gods and our faith, enjoying the opportunity to hear one another and share ideas and the lived aspects of our connection to the gods. At one point on Saturday evening conversation turned to the concept of regional gods,  in the sense of how each individual present connected to the Netjeru in unique ways, often finding connections based on historical reference and detail, but also in the personal touch of the gods on their own lives, perhaps inspired by personality, location, or some other aspect of what is felt and discovered through experience. We considered that the gods perhaps show Themselves to us in the way They do for reasons that may not initially be clear, but perhaps hold some degree of purpose, well worth further contemplation.

And then at one point A’aqyt asked me, “What is Set like for you?” I initially could not answer, because I found it difficult to put to words. I found a brief description later, but even then it wasn’t enough. The urge to try again in writing has struck me now:

What is this land of green to you, Neb Deshret,
Father who walked alone through the dangerous red land?
Guardian of those who wander far from the river’s edge,
You know each hardship, bearing strength enough to endure.
Did you claim our waters that rose and fell not with seasons
but instead at the terrible fury of your storms?
Lord who walks the spaces of transition,
I have seen you transform the very passage of time.
Where once the boundaries of your hand were defined by flood and recession
You have now fiercely taken hold of the cycles of my home.
I sense you when the trees grow bare, when the ice hangs heavy on their limbs.
The color of autumn shifts to grayscale, and you are present in its sudden absence
As sharp as the snow that lands heavy on my bare, outstretched palm,
As hot as the air that burns deep within my lungs as I speak to you
of that once spoken by the great king who sought your protection,
recognizing your command over the cold winds of distant lands.
Set, you have claimed the winter’s edge,
Your grip rests upon the bladed peaks of our mountains.
You recognize the power of extremes
and balance them in your palm as a well crafted knife.
Father, you are not gone from me when this land’s cycles renew.
As the people of Dakleh sang your name in the oases
So shall I drum your heartbeat in gratitude for life returned,
Appreciating your power in the verdant leaf that rises from treasured water
Acknowledging the bounty we are gifted with the constant flow of rivers three.
Sa Nut, as light falls in winter or summer,
I fall to my knees and kiss the ground,
then rise with fist to chest and another aloft to the sky.
My eyes turn North to seek you amidst your mother’s expanse,
And I find you striding forth in constellations,
Until clouds obscure you from view, and I know that battle has begun.
Yet with the coming of the storm, your voice rattles the earth beneath my feet.
Your victorious shout against the Uncreated that assures me another day will dawn.
I will be there to greet you as the mandjet carries you back to Appalachia,
Your name on my lips,
Your voice in my heart.
I am your child of strange lands,
Who finds you at times in the knife of ice
and even the gift of living things.
But always, forever, shall I seek you amongst the stars.

.

rdm: (Default)
[personal profile] rdm posting in [community profile] common_nature
The Quenda (or Southern Brown Bandicoot, Isoodon obesulus) is a small marsupial of the South-West of Western Australia, and other pockets around the coast of Australia.

Under threat from clearing and feral animals (due to both predation and competition for food), it was very unexpected to see one on the edge of the CBD, in Queen Victoria Gardens in Claisebrook. It was even more unexpected to see it in the middle of the day, right next to the main walk-path! 

They are listed as Endangered in Australia.

Cut for size )
calissa: A low angle photo of a book with a pair of glasses sitting on top. (Mt TBR)
[personal profile] calissa

The Furthest Station, Ben Aaronovitch, Rivers of London, Peter Grant, Earl Grey Editing, books and tea, tea and books

Published: June 2017 by Subterranean Press
Format reviewed: E-book (mobi)
Series: Rivers of London/Peter Grant #7.5
Genres: Contemporary fantasy
Source: NetGalley
Available: Publisher (print and electronic) ~ Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Book Depository ~ Booktopia ~Kobo

Disclaimer: I was provided with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

There have been ghosts on the London Underground, sad, harmless spectres whose presence does little more than give a frisson to travelling and boost tourism. But now there’s a rash of sightings on the Metropolitan Line and these ghosts are frightening, aggressive and seem to be looking for something.

Enter PC Peter Grant junior member of the Metropolitan Police’s Special Assessment unit a.k.a. The Folly a.k.a. the only police officers whose official duties include ghost hunting. Together with Jaget Kumar, his counterpart at the British Transport Police, he must brave the terrifying the crush of London’s rush hour to find the source of the ghosts.

Joined by Peter’s wannabe wizard cousin, a preschool river god and Toby the ghost hunting dog their investigation takes a darker tone as they realise that a real person’s life might just be on the line.

And time is running out to save them.

The Furthest Station is a quick novella that retains the spirit of the series but which remains unsatisfying.

Peter’s distinctive voice is present; even though the novella is short, there’s still space for his digressions and pop culture references. There’s even a few footnotes addressed to his American counterpart, though I found these a bit disruptive. They call into question the nature of the story, particularly as there is no framework set up to indicate Peter is addressing someone particular.

The story does a reasonable job of introducing who Peter is and what he does for a living. However, I’m not sure I’d recommend it as an entry point to the series. For example, the oddness of Molly is never explained for a new reader and the references to Beverley and her family are cursory. There’s a lot of background present which is likely to make it confusing.

I enjoyed seeing Peter spend more time with Abigail, though there’s never any real change in their relationship. Preserving the status quo for the novels in such a way leaves it ultimately feeling like filler.

The main plot held up fairly well until the ending. While it was nice to see an acknowledgement that not all police work ends tidily or in a dramatic fashion, the number of loose ends made it unsatisfying to me.

All in all, The Furthest Station was a pleasant read, but not one of Aaronovitch’s better works.

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

Homo floresiensis

Jun. 25th, 2017 04:58 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
 ... has older roots than expected.  They were human, or at least hominids, but not Homo sapiens.

Sunday Yardening

Jun. 25th, 2017 04:06 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today is beautiful, cool, and breezy.

We checked the firepit after yesterday's Litha bonfire.  It had burned down almost completely, just a double handful of stubs to pick out.  Then we shoveled up the loose ash and wheeled to dump in the prairie garden. 

Round 2, I watered plants.  Then I picked up sticks in the savanna.

Round 3, I sprayed weeds.

It's getting dark now, and the fireflies are coming out, so I'm done for the night.

Random birdies at the feeder

Jun. 25th, 2017 01:28 pm
yourlibrarian: Robin sits on her nest (NAT-Robin)
[personal profile] yourlibrarian posting in [community profile] common_nature


I took these a while ago and kept forgetting to post them. Just some more photos of birds on our balcony, including a new set we hadn't seen before.

We'd been seeing one redwing blackbird for a while but later it was joined by a second one. Or possibly these were two entirely different birds given their more colorful markings

Half-Price Sale in Polychrome Heroics

Jun. 25th, 2017 12:51 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
Today is the last day of the half-price sale in Polychrome Heroics.  I've had a little activity, but so far it has centered on things not listed on the sale page.  

However, [personal profile] ng_moonmoth has a pool going with primary interest in "The Place Where the Journey Begins" and "We Are All Related," and secondary interest in "Uncertain Miracles."  If you plan to sponsor anything today, I recommend checking there first to avoid duplication.

All previously sponsored poems have been posted.

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