Wild Stand

“Wild Stand”

These are my bones, where I stand,
These are my feet, intent as the stones,
This is my breath, my will, my desire,
My hands full of fire, of magic and death

My life, wood, garden-
Alive around my skull,
Surrounds my sense with running,
Culling, cursing, full-

Like all, my teeth have weight,
Sharper than tears, but
Gorging for fears, Trap-
All life’s sap through the gate.

Rip, heave, leave-
These bones yield precious dust,
Thrones for fights and steps-
Watch, thrust, sigh for relief…

Eat, take, wield-
These make all my measures,
Fields of graves, of insides sweet,
Treasures wake us from self slaves,

Nourish me with reapings sharp,
Lock, growl, instincts keeping-
Hiddens flourish, Wantings flock,
Turn eyes in, sweep up the clock:

Life, lust, sate-
These rule within my hut,
My hands and my musts,
Crossing bones against all fools,

Turn, chase, die,
Deny my claws, you’ll never try,
Flaws churn up earths to taste,
Burning haunts win every race,

This is my sun, my moon that beats,
Heart’s a flavor and others a treat,
Lusts are endeavors, all blood flows,
Death, wild, scorn, they my joys sow.

Cackles in the air,
Passion spins upon my toes,
Each one wins without compare,
With one sip of wild Knows.

So welcome in, alone
Mind, heart, soul-
Edges here to hone,
For inside here is where I’m whole.

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Top Ten Non-Romance Relationship Books for Thanksgiving

This week I made my own Top Ten list, in honor of the coming holiday: the Top Ten Books where Gratefulness/Support is Key in People who are NOT in Love with One Another. So much of the time in stories, real support or gratefulness is just there to show which person the protagonist should romantically wind up with, and it can and should be there so often when romance is not at all part of the case. Alternatively, it is there as a background plot-point or a side story, rather than being celebrated. I just want to showcase some of the works where non-romantic relationships are the big deal, not a side story.

1. Little Witch by Anna Elizabeth Bennet
-All about new friends, and the food they feed you!
little witch3

2. Diamond Willow by Helen Frost
-Family and animals, and how they overlap!

3. Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salmon Rushdie
-Family, new friends, and even new acquaintances who turn out to be allies, no matter how good they are at it.

4. Gwinna by Barbara Helen Berger
-Family, friends, and animals.
Gwinna

5. The Silent Gondoliers by S. Morgenstern (William Goldman)
-The acts of friendship here, oh how they trump all romance!

6. Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore
-I love how friendship and support clearly undermines other relationship terms and keeps the heroine going. This is perhaps one of the great reasons why shipping Bitterblue/Giddon revolts me-this book is about the warmth and triumph of friendship-and these readers are flying in the face of that by reading into one of the best friendships in it a romance that was never there!

7. The Merlin Trilogy by Jane Yolen
-Oh, how he connects to people! Family, memories, even the ultimately unworthy who still held his gratitude for a time, it’s all beautiful.

8. The Tiffany Aching series by Terry Pratchett
-When Tiffany is your friend, you will wind up grateful.

9. Incarceron by Catherine Fisher
-The deepest relationships in here are about family, about friends who become family, and about trust. This is another instance where I get very upset at people who insist that a close friendship ought to have been a romance just because it was the most honest and strong relationship-real gratitude and reliance happens in friendships, too!

10. Entwined by Heather Dixon
-All about family, right to the core, and none of the romances get in the way of that in the slightest.

And 11, because I can: The Magic Thief series by Sarah Prineas
-Allies, friendship, and teamwork.

How about you? What are some of your favorite non-romance relationships or books?

Top Ten Books I ReRead

This is a rendition of Top Ten Tuesday (and a Day) by the thebrokeandthebookish.wordpress.com. This week was the top 10 Books to Reread. I puzzled about that…Books I’ve reread the most? Books I’d like to reread for the first time? I decided to go with books that I’ve reread a lot in recent memory, as opposed to of all time. So, here it is:

Top Ten Books For My Rereading Pleasure

1. The Ordinary Princess by M.M. Kaye
Every spring. “There had been a long debate in Council on ‘The Advisability of Inviting Fairies to the Christrening.'”
ordinary princess

2. Gwinna by Barbara Helen Berger
Gwinna

3. The Perilous Gard by Elizabeth Marie Pope
Every fall, this retelling of Tam Lin. “The Night is Hallow’een, my love, the morni s Hallows’ Day-”
perilousgard2

4. Let Your Mind Alone by James Thurber
-This book includes several wonderful satires about early self-help advice and just humorous essays about life that work wonders about putting things in perspective, covering issues like travel, wanting a javelin, turtle-catching, and solving life problems with index cards, plays, and ghostly visitors. I reread it whenever I need to take my mind off of life-problems or just laugh.
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5. The Tiffany Aching series by Terry Pratchett

6. The works of A.A. Milne
“Forget about the crackers, And forget about the candy; I’m sure a box of chocolates Would never come in handy; I don’t like oranges, I don’t want nuts, And I HAVE got a pocket-knife That almost cuts. But, oh! Father Christmas, if you love me at all, Bring me a big, red india-rubber ball!”
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7. A Royal Pain by Ellen Conford
-It’s just such a fun one to read out loud. “Right off the bat I have to say that no matter what you may have read in the papers, I don’t think I was such a terrible princess.”
a-royal-pain-img

8. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
-Have you read those ogre and bird languages out loud? It’s marvelous!

9. The Princess Bride by S. Morgenstern (William Goldman)
Princess-Bride-movie_572

10. My Mother, She Killed Me, My Father, He Ate Me edited by Kate Bernheimer
-This collection of fairy tale retellings is spooky, and funny, and touching, and haunting, and wonderful.
My-Mother-She-Killed-Me

“Spinning Straws”

“Spinning Straws”

Afraid my Here’s just a pile of straw,
The flimsiest place of all to hide,
And I see a wolf pacing outside
With dollar-sign eyes and a gaping maw.

Just here spinning dreams of gold,
But can’t know what is real
Or let fears start to heal,
Til the man says one dream’s taken hold.

I entered this space to win more,
Yet what I own is depleted,
And I feel defeated,
So many wisps scatter over the floor.

Maybe I promised my future away,
For what I can’t guess
And now I feel less,
Grasping straws at a name I can’t say.

What name will finally fit?
It seems I have tried-
I know I have sighed,
But still I have failed to find it.

Have I been spinning false gold?
Tossing in my straw bed,
May be losing my head,
I’m not sure I want to be told.

Perhaps there is a one who knows,
Who wants my labors to bear fruit,
And sees the future’s my strong suit,
Where my gold dream is so real it glows…

I’m trying to spin this straw to gold,
As the wolf paces to inspire dread,
And my mind races to ask what’s ahead,
Which name will describe what I hold-

Straw?….Or is it gold?

Top Ten Places Books Make Me Want to Visit

This is a rendition of Top Ten Tuesday by the thebrokeandthebookish.wordpress.com. This week was the top 10 places books made you want to visit, whether real or imaginary. I had trouble with this one because I’m a lot more eager to go around meeting people from books rather than places. So, here we go:

1. Phantasmorania from “The Ordinary Princess” by M. M. Kaye
ordinary princess

2. Ireland from “Lion of Ireland” by Morgan Llywelyn
lionofireland

3. Verona from “Master of Verona” by David Blixt
(Full review here: https://wheresmytower.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/the-master-of-verona/)

4. Narnia from the series “Narnia” by C.S. Lewis

5. The 100 Acre Wood from all of “Winnie the Pooh” by A.A. Milne
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6. The Paris Opera House from “Phantom of the Opera” by Gaston LeRoux

7. The cat hills from “Millions of Cats” by Wanda Gág
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8. Frell from “Ella Enchanted” by Gail Carson Levine

9. Luster from “Into the Land of the Unicorns” by Bruce Coville
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10. Ingary from “Howl’s Moving Castle” by Diana Wynne Jones
Howl-s-Moving-Castle-howls-moving-castle-913538_1024_768

What about you? Do you want to visit Frell mainly to meet Ella and her friends, or would you just enjoy the scenery? (I’m characters.) Would you love to run amuck in Howl’s house or kingdom alone or do you just want to talk to him? (I’m for the house more than the wizard.) What sort of places intrigue you?

Top Ten Books I Had Trouble Finishing (For Reasons Other than Writing Style)

This is a rendition of Top Ten Tuesday (and a Day) by the thebrokeandthebookish.wordpress.com. This week was the top 10 books you had trouble finishing. This post took me the extra day because I had to figure out how to do this without giving free publicity to the most dreadfully written books I’ve read. In the end, I managed to remember the books that kept me pausing or agitated while finishing them for reasons other than poor writing. Here we go:

Top Ten Books I Had Trouble Finishing (For Reasons Other than Writing Style)

1. “The Virgin’s Lover” by Philippa Gregory
-I hated her characterization of Elizabeth and the motivations she gave certain others never even actually made sense! Agh!

2. “The Wings of a Falcon” by Cynthia Voigt
-After spending hundreds of pages inside the main character’s head suddenly she shunted me into his best friend’s head for the last bit! I am still up set about this. Head-Shunting is uncool!

3. “The Man in the Iron Mask” by Alexandre Dumas
-Nothing had prepared me for this to be the book where his famous musketeers die! No one had told me that! It was deeply upsetting to go in unaware.

4. “Morte D’Arthur” by Sir Thomas Malory
-My issue here is that all of its tales are just jumbled all together without noting that by including similar tales of the same people or slightly different versions of events, when one tries to read it as a story it comes out incredibly contradictory and dense.

5. “Tell me if the Lovers are Losers” by Cynthia Voigt
-This one I did find just too….heavy-toned, I think, and I stopped reading it for about a month before finishing.

6. “Justine” by Lawrence Durrell
-This book is fascinating and I actually love it, but the reading experience was very hard!

7. “The Bible According to Mark Twain” by Mark Twain
-I absolutely adore this, and had to own it, but it takes a lot of brain power and can prove very troubling.

These last three I’m having such trouble with I’ve yet to finish.

8. “Don Quixote” by Cervantes
-It’s just so long. And also angering when thought about too much.

9. The “Temeraire” series by Naomi Novik
-I had to stop after the 5th one because of the disrespect shown in replacing the real Duke of Wellington with a fictional character when other historical personages had been left alone.

10. Proust. Why are you so dense and hard to get into, Proust? Once in the groove you were interesting…

And so ends this week’s reading confessions. Have you any?

Happy National Hobbit Day 2

Happy National Hobbit Day!
(Previous festivities here: https://wheresmytower.wordpress.com/2012/09/22/happy-national-hobbit-day/)

“An Ode to Hobbitiness”

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Couldn’t be a Bilbo, and leave it all behind.
Couldn’t be like Frodo, to burden so resigned.
Hardly a Samwise, with smile always on-
Where has all my hobbityness gone?

Not a fan of mushrooms,
My home’s above the ground.
Don’t care much for foot hair,
No garden to be found.

But I love growing things, without the thumb of green-
And rhyme and sing to tell the wheres I’ve been,
Merrily, I’ve stolen time in fields and fireworks-
Could it be my inner hobbit lurks?

Will travel in my time,
Too impatient for the ents.
Won’t worry for the silver,
But electricity and rent-

It’s hard to be a hobbit, without a Party Tree,
Without second breakfast, elevenses, and tea,
Just hosting thoughts of friends too far to see-
Still, I’ll be the best hobbit I can be.

If an apartment can be a homely house,
And savoring meals can make it two-
If I can celebrate simple things,
and friends like me and you

Then a hobbit’s stout heart can face a future scary,
And anything that comes along won’t be too much to carry.
And I’ll survive mistakes as foolish as a Took’s,
And make it there and back again, like hobbits do in books.

So let all hobbit selves appear like burglar Bilbo,
To frolic and indulge as much as they will, though
Real life might return to push the shire away,
Just snack and let it be a Happy Hobbit Day!

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