#1533

guys, I did a thing!
this queer’s more visible now
weird lazy femme ace

[ I know I never post pictures of myself here, but I’ve been wanting to shave my hair for years, so you have to suffer through some selfies. Also, “weird lazy femme ace” may be my new descriptor. ]

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#1530

Mother Cat, who chose me at birth
take me into your blessed service
I shall protect your children as my own
and honor the spirits of their dead

I am yours, Lady of the East
do with me as you will

Mother Cat, who calls to me now
teach me the ways of your glorious devotion
I shall humble my heart to your love
and surrender my will to your ferocity

I am yours, Lady of the Flame
do with me as you will

Mother Cat, who stands at my side
guide me along the lighted path
I shall clear my mind for your wisdom
and open eyes to your messengers

I am yours, Lady of Truth
do with me as you will

Bastet[ Bast has declared 2015 to be her year, so to celebrate I bought her a lovely (and sassy) new statue and a book about invoking the Egyptian gods. Something tells me I won’t need the book, though; she seems fine with letting me know exactly what she wants, and when. Like any cat. ]

#1529

i’m not here i’m not here i’m not here
i am stone i will abide i am stone i will abide
i’m stone i’m stone i’m stone

“Elyssa?”

darkness darkness darkness i’m at the bottom of the ocean i’m under the water i’m not here i’m not here i’m under the ocean i’m miles away i’m stone i’m stone

“Where are you?”

i’mnotherei’mnotherei’mnothere
darkdarkdarkdarkdark

“…far away…”

“No. I’m here. I found you.”

#1522 – 2014 Book List

[ This year has been very busy with new job(s), moving, several illnesses, and other things, so I didn’t read nearly as many books as usual. However, I think most of the books I did read were of good quality so hopefully that makes up for my low number. I read 20 books this year with GRSM (gender, romantic, and sexual orientation minorities) main characters; it probably would have been more but I got distracted near the end of the year by historical fiction. Extreme praises go to The Mercury Waltz, The Tiger Queens, and Conservation of Shadows. ]

  1. ElfQuest: The Quest Begins (novel) – Wendi and Richard Pini
  2. The Mercury Waltz – Kathe Koja
  3. Night Shadows: Queer Horror – Various
  4. Unspeakable Horror: From the Shadows of the Closet – ed. Vince Liaguno and Chad Helder
  5. Project Unicorn, Volume 2 – Sarah Diemer and Jennifer Diemer
  6. Sappho’s Fables, Volume 1 – Jennifer Diemer and Elora Bishop
  7. Heiresses of Russ 2013: The Year’s Best Lesbian Speculative Fiction – various
  8. Roses and Thorns: Beauty and the Beast Retold – Chris Anne Wolfe
  9. Fire Logic – Laurie J Marks
  10. The Queen’s Librarian – Carole Cummings
  11. American Studies – Mark Merlis
  12. ElfQuest: Journey to Sorrow’s End (novel) – Wendi and Richard Pini
  13. The Lies of Locke Lamora – Scott Lynch
  14. Dawn of Darkness – Lee Brandenburg
  15. Funeral Games – Mary Renault
  16. Red Seas Under Red Skies – Scott Lynch
  17. The Republic of Thieves – Scott Lynch
  18. Ash – Malinda Lo
  19. Greenwode – J Tullos Hennig
  20. The October Country – Ray Bradbury
  21. Long After Midnight – Ray Bradbury
  22. The Martian Chronicles – Ray Bradbury
  23. Wilde Stories 2014 – Steve Berman
  24. Half a King – Joe Abercrombie
  25. The Princess Bride – William Golding*
  26. Ebenezer – Joselle Vanderhoof
  27. Ask the Passengers – A.S. King
  28. The Betrayal – R.L. Stein*
  29. The Girls of No Return – Erin Saldin
  30. Conservation of Shadows – Yoon Ha Lee
  31. The Secret – R.L. Stein*
  32. The Girl From the Well – Rin Chupeco
  33. Alice + Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis – Alexis Coe
  34. Tipping the Velvet – Sarah Waters
  35. Fingersmith – Sarah Waters
  36. Shadows on the Moon – Zoe Marriott
  37. The Burning – R.L. Stein*
  38. The Bread We Eat in Dreams – Catherynne M. Valente
  39. Carmilla – J. Sheridan LeFanu
  40. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson
  41. The Tiger Queens: The Women of Genghis Khan – Stephanie Thornton
  42. The Phantom of the Opera – Gaston Leroux*
  43. Starvation Heights: A True Story of Murder and Malice in the Woods of the Pacific Northwest – Gregg Olsen
  44. Daughter of the Gods: A Novel of Ancient Egypt – Stephanie Thornton

*Books read out loud by my wonderful girlfriend.

#1510

late at night my ten year old self yells at me, tears in her eyes and hands clenched in fists, demanding “how could you let this happen? how could you let him go?!” like I had any control, like eight years difference somehow made me an adult with the power to move stars and blood clots, yet I know she can’t understand something so profoundly wrong when her entire world is built upon the framework of What Has Been Therefore Always Will Be, sure she’s stood on damp porch steps and called desperately for lost cats but this loss is incomprehensible and she feels wounded, betrayed, this isn’t how things were supposed to go at all, and all I can say is “I know, I know, I know”

#1493 – Asexual Awareness Week

It’s Asexual Awareness Week and I want to write something – not for the uneducated or the allies out there, but for the asexuals who, like myself, might be confused or afraid or upset. The ones who may not want to celebrate this week, but feel drawn to the push for awareness anyway. I can only write about my own experiences with my asexuality, but maybe my words will resonate with someone out there. Here goes.

Asexuality, to me, feels like a fairy tale. It feels like having fins instead of legs, and I’d give up any beautiful, integral part of myself to make the trade and walk on land like my beloved. It feels like I’m a beast hidden away in a castle, and no matter how much I hope her kiss will break the curse, I know no curse exists; this is just who I am, ugly and unacceptable. It feels like I am a slumbering beauty surrounded by the wall of thorns that is my own body, and I’m so afraid that she’ll wound herself too deeply trying to cut down the wall. It feels like searching desperately for mushroom rings in the hopes of being spirited away to Faery, where everything and everyone is covered in glamour.

I have a very complicated relationship with my asexuality. I hate it, even as I fight for greater asexual visibility and acceptance. I hate myself, even as I argue for the presence of asexuals in LGBTQ safe spaces. We deserve that acceptance, even if I can’t yet accept myself. We deserve that inclusion, even if I don’t always feel comfortable or safe in those spaces.

And I am trying to be okay with that. I’m trying to be okay with the anger, the sorrow, the feelings of wrongness and inadequacy. And it’s okay for you, reader, to feel those things as well. It’s okay to be upset with your asexuality, to wonder if something made you this way and if you can be fixed. It’s okay to feel different, and to worry how being asexual will change certain aspects of your life. This road can be a long, hard, painful one. Never let anyone tell you asexuals don’t struggle or suffer over their identities. Never let anyone tell you what labels you can or can’t use. Many of us struggle. Many of us suffer. Many of us agonize over the labels we want, the ones we can’t shake, the ones we love and fear. No one should erase that. Every experience you have is uniquely yours, forever. Embrace it.

It gets better. It gets worse. Have faith. Have faith you’ll find community, if community is what you need. Have faith you’ll find love, if love is what you need. Have faith you’ll get through the dark times, because you will. They suck – god, do they suck – but you’ll get through them.

#1484

Bradbury has followed me through the years, both companion and guide, close to my side as any holy book. I have read him in dorm rooms late at night and New Mexican laundromats at high noon; in hotel rooms in Switzerland and Portland; on trains down the continent, planes across the ocean, buses through the city; in the deepest wilderness and in bed by sick, slumbering lovers. I have read him when I needed rekindling, when I needed reminding, when I needed a rescue. I have read him desperately, ravenously, wondrously.