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belenen: (Default)
belenen

June 2017

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Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.

belenen: (Default)
How I hear with CAPD: everything is mondegreens and listening to words is constant translation work
icon: "confused (photo of a purple diamond-shaped sign with a line leading to four arrows all curving and pointing in different directions)"

I have central auditory processing disorder, CAPD, which means that listening to words is always hard work. A mondegreen is "a mishearing or misinterpretation of a phrase as a result of near-homophony, in a way that gives it a new meaning." This is a daily occurrence for me. My hearing is always blurred; I do a LOT of guess work when I don't know someone's cadence, style, and vocabulary. Listening to people talk is easier if I know them well and have a subconscious catalogue of what words they tend to use, what letters they tend to emphasize or drop, etc.

If you have ever trained a device to learn your voice for voice-to-text, you know that you have to invest a good number of hours before the computer successfully translates your sound to text, and before that it is a muddled mess of nonsense. And if there is a lot of ambient noise -- especially sibilant noise like the rushing of wind -- the computer will get it wrong even if it usually gets it perfect. That's my brain.

I rely a lot on the length of words and logical possibilities for what could fit. An example: I hear someone say "-ee ay m|by --o|a-t|d-t|d --eem|n" while they hold an empty cup with white remnants in it and point at someone else. From this I guess that they are saying "he ate my clotted cream" but without context it could be "the gate by spotted beans" or "she may cry fated seams" etc. It sounds very nearly the same to me. Some words don't have a lot of sound-alikes that make sense to switch out, but a LOT of adjectives do, and adjectives can be stuck into a sentence almost anywhere. It's extra difficult when it's a three word sentence out of context with only an article in the middle, because "____ is ____" could be almost ANYTHING, and I can't even tell how long the missing words are. Also, I almost always miss the first word or two someone says to me, because I hadn't tuned in yet, so I have to allow for a missing word at the beginning.

This also means that short, out-of-context phrases can be nearly impossible for me to figure out within a reasonable conversational pause. The other day someone walked by and said "___ __ ___ __-" with some of these letters: h d g. I initially interpreted this as "have your good day!" since I was getting in my car and I replied "you too!" I got in my car, then realized the sound pattern was actually "___ ___ ___ __-__?" and they had asked me "how's your day going?" They mumbled the last bit so I didn't notice the last syllable, and I transposed the d and g accidentally. The "r" I heard but assumed I mis-heard at first.

a bunch of stuff that will only make sense visually ) And a lot of people in the south drop their final g and r and t and b in consonant conjunctions so "passing your best curb pound stomp" becomes "passin yah bess curr poun- stom-," for instance, so wherever one of those might be tacked on I have to guess whether it should be there or not.

So, "have you heard that wild geese are flying west now?" would sound like "(-w|h*a|o|u*v|s|z) (w|y*oo-) (w|h*e|i*r-) (d|th|h*a*t|d|p) (y|w*i*l-) (g*ee*s-) (a*ah|r) (fl|l|bl|pl*y*ee*n|m|b-) (w|h*e|i*st) (m|n|b|w|d*ow-)?" I separated letters with asterisks and put each word in parenthesis but obviously when I hear it I don't get those markers -- it's even harder to read. The vertical lines mean that a sound could be any of those letters. The hyphens are dropped letters or places where dropped letters could be, based on the cadence of speaking. Without context I would have a VERY difficult time translating this. It could be "has your weird dad file-greased at lying best down?" and I only know it isn't because that doesn't make much sense. But also, if I hear it strongly like that, it makes it impossible to back up and re-run the sound to guess again because now that's all my brain wants to suggest.

Watching a person's face helps immensely, because I'm reading their lips and their expressions, which give additional context. If someone is very good at mouthing their words, I can understand them almost as well (or as badly) as I can when they're speaking aloud. Better than people who mumble! I realized this when watching people perform deaf poetry, some of whom mouthed the words very clearly. Even across the room, I could understand them better with no sound than someone who mumbles, even if they mumble loudly.

I have a co-worker who has an unpredictable speech pattern and also mumbles, and I mis-read them probably at least 3 times a week. Since we mostly communicate via text in chat and not audibly, that is a LOT. But at least I don't mind being laughed at, so I just repeat what I heard and that gets them to repeat it more clearly. I used to make the mistake of asking people to repeat themselves and that is almost never effective, because with the same speed and inflection, getting louder does not help. And a lot of times they won't repeat, they'll rephrase or summarize, which frustrates my curiosity to no end. But if I tell them what I misheard, they will repeat it and put emphasis on the bits I didn't get, which is exactly what I need. It's less frustrating to them too, which is good because I don't like for people to associate me with frustration.

This is why I can't deal with ambient noise and conversation at the same time. Understanding sound as words takes so much mental processing and when there is any ambient noise it is twice as hard or sometimes literally so hard that it is impossible. I can't have music with lyrics on at the same time as I write, read, or listen to anyone speak, because my mind automatically tries to translate it and it takes up all my ability to think. I really miss being able to listen to lyrical music while reading or writing or spending time with people, but I don't think I will ever have that again.

it has really affected how I listen to music )


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belenen: (Default)
2016 summary: some of the best weeks and worst months of my life.
icon: "confused (photo of a purple diamond-shaped sign with a line leading to four arrows all curving and pointing in different directions)"

I started 2016 with a lot of hope. In January I connected a lot with Kylei, Sande, and Hannah; I had two graduation parties and started making more plans to spend time with people, and I started meditating weekly-ish with Elizabeth. But by the end of January I ended up in a dark crash over how little I felt connected to people. The beginning of February was a little better -- I got to go to Big Trees with some of my favorite people, and Topaz hosted Heather's birthday which was also nourishing and fun. But then I went to a party at Kylei's and had a terrible anxiety crash which ended up leaking into the next day and causing a horrifically painful miscommunication with Topaz. Later that month I went to the activist meet-and-greet for the first time after meaning to go for ages, and met three awesome new people. But just introducing myself made my heart beat painfully hard. At the end of February I asked my psychiatrist to prescribe me anxiety meds and start being medicated for that for the first time.

In March I did a lot of social -- met with four friends as well as with my ex-mother-in-law. I also began a four-week break with Topaz, in an effort to re-set our relationship which had become too central for both of us. In April I had two tinder fails (one flaked and the other I could hardly talk with), made a new friend, hosted a crafty party and a cuddly communion, spent time with Roger and Serenity, and went to Euphoria where I gave a talk on intimacy and made a game with it. (yeah I'd say that the anxiety meds were helping!) In May I spent a lot of time with Serenity and Evelyn, hosted a cuddly communion, spent time with Katie, Allison, Serra, and Indie, and wrote a lot of important posts. In June I spent lots of time with Serenity, presented at APW and SFQP, hung out with Arizona, Sande, Allison, Kylei, Evelyn, and Cass, and had a truth-or-truth videochat with LJ friends, as well as writing a lot of important posts.

In July stuff started getting very stressful -- Topaz went through something really traumatic, Kanika had a medical emergency and I had to take her to the vet, my little sister came in town unexpectedly, and I ran out of money and had to start begging from my bioparents. But also I spent lots of good time with Serenity and had several gathers -- two with my lil sis, also Katie, Allison, Hannah, Kylei, Elliott, Evelyn, Sande, Cass, and even Adi, so that part was positive. But August brought a lot of painful stuff for Topaz, was when I ran out of ADD meds with no access to a doctor, and was the last time I saw Evelyn for months. Roger and Allison were supportive and helpful, and I went to a SONG membership meeting which gave me hope like nothing else except for TBC ever has.

September I got a job at Starbux and finally started getting call backs and interviews for a few of the hundreds of applications I had sent. My awful bioparents also invaded my house and stayed for a month, harassing me about money, rearranging my stuff and throwing some of it away without my permission, invading my bedroom, and being transphobic. October was mostly filled up with my awful bioparents and working at Starbux but at the very end I began doing LJ Idol again. In November things got still worse -- Evelyn officially broke things off with me and Kylei blew up at me and told me we can't be friends. Then later that month Evelyn invited me to a party at their house which ended up being an emotional disaster. I quit Starbux for my new job.

December was a very mixed bag. I started my new job, which was amazing; I got a new psychiatrist and finally got medicated for ADD again; I got to spend time with Arizona, Felix, Felix's people Blaire and Shay, Allison, Jonathan, Heather, Brian, Jessica, and my little sister. But also, my grandmother died and I had to spend time with my awful biofamily, and I was so emotionally drained that I couldn't really enjoy Solstice. It was also a sad reminder of my estrangement from Kylei and Evelyn, because I wanted them at Solstice so much.

detailed events )


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belenen: (bluestocking)

icon: "bluestocking (photo of a book lying open on a table with a bright window in the background, overlaid with a yellow fractal that looks like the sun shining through dust motes)"




Stars are for re-watches

SHOWS:
Switched at Birth (finished season 4)
New Girl season 4
Grey's Anatomy* (seasons 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, )
Lost Girl* (all seasons [with a few skips])
Last Tango in Halifax (seasons 1-3)
Better Off Ted*
Witches of East End*
Love (season 1)
Wentworth* (seasons 1-2 rewatch, plus 3)
IT Crowd* (all seasons)
Cristela (season 1)
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (season 2)
The Messengers (part of season 1)
How to Get Away with Murder (season 2)
Grace and Frankie (season 2)
Bitten (seasons 1-3)
Zoo (season 1)
Lady Dynamite (season 1)
The Lizzie Borden Chronicles (complete)
Baby Daddy (seasons 4-5)
Good Witch (part of season 1)
Scandal (season 5)
Orange is the New Black (season 4)



FILMS (small screen):
Guidance
Jenny's Wedding
Revenge of the Bridesmaids
I Give It a Year
The Decoy Bride (wtf with all these wedding-themed movies)



FILMS (theatre):
Through the Looking Glass (Topaz treated me)



BOOKS:




ALBUMS:
Seinabo Sey -- "Pretend"



CONCERTS:




ARTICLES:






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belenen: (garrulous)
tweets & fb posts, November 2016
it is very long )


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belenen: (healing)
processing through music: Florence + The Machine / heavy hearts
icon: "healing (a photo of me and Hannah curled up together, naked, with Hannah's head resting on my legs and my arms around/over them. it's colored in violet with a fractal overlay of purple, blue, and green.)"

My heart sings to me today through Florence + the Machine. It started with



"Heavy heavy i'm so heavy in your arms
(i'm so) Heavy heavy i'm so heavy in your arms
(i'm so) Heavy heavy i'm so heavy in your arms
(i'm so) Heavy heavy i'm so heavy in your arms

I was a heavy heart to carry
my beloved was weighed down
My arms around your neck
My fingers laced to crown

I was a heavy heart to carry
But you never let me down
When you had me in your arms
My feet never touched the ground

And is it worth the wait
All this killing time?
Are you strong enough to stand
Protecting both your heart and mine?"



Today I was feeling increasingly overwhelmed with sadness, with this longing ache, and I wasn't sure if it was mine, or the pain of someone I am connected to. It didn't feel poisonous or like it was damaging me, it just felt desperate, needing expression, needing LOUD needing SHOUTS, and I was grateful that today Serenity was away from the house because I went to the living room and put that song on (it had been repeating in my mind), put it loud, and sang and screamed along and wept and sobbed and danced in fury and meaning, flinging my roots down and my wings wide, thrashing wild. I kept on listening to more songs from Florence + the Machine's "Lungs" and "Ceremonials," singing and gesturing fiercely to the music.

I tell myself it will be worth the wait, I can make it through the slow death of time, I'll eventually be able to have joy that is not constantly strangled by they far-too-long sharply-thin unbreakable strings of my stress and have growth that doesn't wither every time I put out a new leaf. I try so hard to believe me, but part of me doesn't believe such a thing exists.

My heart is so heavy and I'm the only one strong enough to carry it. Why couldn't it be lighter? why couldn't I have people around me with light enough hearts and strong enough arms that they could help me with mine? But people with light hearts don't develop strong arms and people with heavy hearts always seem at their max. We don't know how to say no to carrying for others unless it will actually break us... so we allow gradually more and more to be added until we can't carry our own and end up dragging it behind on a leash, getting bruised and cut and bashed by every slightest bump in the road.



And every demon wants his pound of flesh
But I like to keep some things to myself
I like to keep my issues drawn

And it's hard to dance with a devil on your back
So shake him off, oh whoa

And I am done with my graceless heart
So tonight I'm gonna cut it out and then restart
'Cause I like to keep my issues drawn
It's always darkest before the dawn

And I'm damned if I do and I'm damned if I don't
So here's to drinks in the dark at the end of my road
And I'm ready to suffer and I'm ready to hope
It's a shot in the dark aimed right at my throat
'Cause looking for heaven, found the devil in me
Looking for heaven, found the devil in me
Well what the hell
I'm gonna let it happen to me



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belenen: (connate)
what i have learned from Topaz, from being w Topaz, and from the last 3 years in general
icon: "connate (the characters Keenan and Joan from "Playing By Heart," facing each other with their faces so close that their noses almost touch, both with eyes almost closed, wearing slight smiles)"

(from Topaz) What, if anything, do you think you've learned FROM me; And, what, if anything, do you feel you've learned from being with me; And, what, if any, big things have you learned since we got together?

Ummm... I have learned a huge lot and my memory is full of holes, so I'm not even gonna try to make this comprehensive.

From you?
I have learned what media really means. I learned that even hostile anti-theists can have understandings of the world that fit with my spiritual beliefs. I learned that nail polish can be butch. I learned that chameleoning can be a powerful tool against oppression and that it doesn't always touch your soul. I learned that Carl Sagan is wonderful, and that wonder is a core value of mine. I learned about and came to love Michael Jackson, M.I.A., Lowkey, Melissa Ferrick, Sonia Leigh, and Ani Difranco. I learned that I dearly love giving presents to people who love getting them and have a variety of interests. I learned that sometimes, doing dishes can be worth it. I learned that I can enjoy cauliflower. I learned that I like many kinds of sex that I hadn't been interested in before. I learned that sometimes climbing a mountain is not the worst thing. I learned what a migraine is, and why it is so not the same as a really bad headache.

From being with you?
I've learned to be more patient with communication, and that 'I can't tell you yet' is not necessarily code for 'I'm going to put this off until you forget.' I learned that I can't deal with much indirect communication, and I learned how to respond to it in a useful way. I learned that I really love sweetness. I learned that I can ask for what I want without fear of pressuring someone into giving it. I learned that I really value (maybe need) independence in a lover, mixed with willingness to express needs and desires. I learned that I can brush someone's hair for literal hours, and that I miss having hair long enough to brush.

Overall big things?
I learned I don't believe in an afterlife or in spanking (both from logical conversations with you). I learned a ridiculously huge amount about racism, cissexism, ableism, and oppression in general. I learned that I have talent in stats. I learned that my ADD is bad enough that I can't really function without meds. I learned that my fractals are beautiful to more people than just me. I learned that I suck at picking people and need to get input from my insightful friends. I learned that LJ is still alive and that I can be 'in' it like I did years ago. I learned that I can motivate myself to do things with colorful stickers. I learned that my mental health is negatively affected when I don't eat breakfast and lunch. I learned that I can forge on ahead with something completely new, even when my future rests on that thing. I learned that parts of my biofamily are kinda great and that my bioparent M is the most selfish person I've known. I learned that I need group focus time as well as one-on-one. I've learned that I need for my lover(s) to combine specific compliments with touch for me to feel desirable or aesthetically pleasing. I learned that nourishing connections are increasingly difficult for me to find. I learned that similarity of inner self or similarity of overall goals doesn't make a connection nourishing: that I need connections with people who are on a growth spiral and not too far away from me. I learned that my privilege as a colonizer race means that it would be inappropriate for me to profit from doing spiritual healings or divination (since I only have access to these things due to historical and modern spiritual theft). I learned that I can build spiritual practice that is more growth-inducing, challenging, and meaningful for me than any externally-created practice I have come across.


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belenen: (transfixed)
dreams: grasshoppers & butterflies protect me from wasps / performing & drinking w Sia
icon: "transfixed (me at Big Trees for the first time, wide-eyed and open-mouthed in awe at the beauty)"

earlier this week I dreamed that butterflies and grasshoppers were protecting me from wasps, at the top of my driveway and just across the street. First I outran the wasps, then I decided to just let them sting me because I could handle it, then butterflies and grasshoppers swarmed around in between me and the wasps just blocking them from getting to me.

and two days ago I dreamed that I went to a Sia concert in a dark bar where the bar was part of the stage and one song involved making drinks for some reason. Sia pulled me on stage and had me perform in the song by pouring drinks. After the song someone came up and tried to order from me thinking I was a bartender and I was like "oh, no, I don't really do this, I don't know how to make that" and started to leave the stage and Sia was like "what? why are you leaving?" and said "oh, I thought you just wanted me here for that one" and felt awkward but then they moved to a different stage that was white and elevated and round with a spiral staircase/slide going up from one side. they were acting out this song and I just went up on the stage and interacted with them, playing the part of the other person in the song. I felt so in-sync I didn't fret about whether or not I was supposed to, though I was surprised that there wasn't security stopping me. at the end of the interactive part Sia pushed me off the stage and that didn't feel weird or bad either, I felt zero rejection. I went to watch from behind the stage on what were kinda like bleachers. They ended the set with this bizarre pretzeling of their body in a legs-spread backbend which was especially shocking since they weren't wearing underwear and their short dress got pulled up by the bend. The audience gasped but it made perfect sense to me and I just nodded. Then they came up to me after and asked to have a beer with me and we walked to another part of the building which was under construction, sheets hanging everywhere. We sat in a booth that was being stored there, under dim light, and talked. They were so clearly crushing on me and I both realized this and was comfortable with it though I wasn't feeling crushy myself (which has never happened to me in waking life). I really enjoyed their company and admired them and was curious about possibilities but didn't feel at all overwhelmed or nervous or self-conscious. That dream was so real, and stuck with me all day into the next, making me feel really affirmed.


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belenen: (woven souls)
Very productive day: school stuff, oneness blessing, connection ritual
icon: "woven souls (me and Hannah lying naked on black cloth, with legs entwined, laying on our sides facing each other with one set of hands entwined with each other's, and the top shoulder leaning back, relaxed. there is a red and violet overlay with the violet coloring me and the red coloring Hannah)"

This Thursday was a very eventful and nourishing day. school stuff in the morning )

I spent the rest of the day with LilyWolf: we talked for a while and then had prolonged eye contact (like, 20-30 minutes, way more than others can usually do). At that point I realized how tired I was and asked them to drive us to the oneness blessing, which they cheerfully did. The blessing circle was at someone's house instead of a church, and it felt much better. We used to meet in the rooms where the age 10-18 kids spend time, which feels rather chaotic and exposed: the room we meet in now is set up as a sanctuary and you can feel the calm infused throughout.

During the blessing, I first felt energy go into me in a kind of shower, flowing through me from the person's hands into the earth and then it sort of bounced back, so it was this ellipse flowing through me. That was true for the first few times, and then I started to feel a sort of pressure/fullness in the center of my forehead each time. As usual my thoughts got more clarified and creative as the hour moved forward, and I felt a sense of relief in my brain. I was really glad to have gone, just for that, and reminded of how good it is for me to go regularly because it has a cumulative effect and one of the things it seems to do is heal my mind a little from the ways that ADD stresses it.

Giving the blessing felt a little awkward and barely-trickling at first, because it had been so long since I did it last, but it opened up with each instance. With one person, I felt they had a sort of stern maternal deity, and when I let it flow from them through me to the person, I started to feel like I was floating up from my feet! I've never felt anything like that before and it was really unexpected from such a deity. The next person in the circle, I felt a sense of white flowy sweet gentleness that reminded me of Isis or Quan Yin but I don't think it was either of those, perhaps a saint. Then there was the one who always feels so open that it is super easy to flow with them: every time I give them the blessing I see a moonlit waterfall in a dense forest, and I feel that space giving to them (I think they worship a deity but it is always only nature I feel giving to them). Then I gave to LilyWolf and felt/saw a greenish face surrounded by leaves, felt a sense of Celtic isles, and heard the name Caerdwynn (later I looked this up and found Ceridwen). It was shorter than the ones I'm used to but it was every bit as powerful if not more so. I feel very inclined to go every week, and hope that I motivate to do so. It'll be difficult for the next few months because going out in the dark cold is so repulsive to me.

As we headed home we realized we were both very hungry and stopped at one of my favorite Mexican food places (the one with the best salsa) and I impulsively invited Topaz, forgetting how stressful last minute plans are for them. They'd already had a long and shitty day, and it was the last straw. I asked LilyWolf if they minded driving me to Topaz' to give them some delicious food, and they were happy to help, so we went and dropped that off. It helped Topaz feel better, thankfully.

When we got back to the house we had tea and coffee and I asked if they'd like to participate in a ritual for drawing connections in (both general and heart-kin) and they were quite enthused about the idea. So I let them copy my spells down, and gathered the necessary items.

I lit a yellow candle for joy, and then turned on some music so that we could raise energy through dance; that was really powerful. At first I was self-conscious but then I just poured myself into the music and gathered emotion from it. I haven't used dance in ritual deliberately before, but I realized that when I danced in church, it was like this. With singular focus, pulling up emotion deliberately, reaching to connect, to open myself for messages. (with this realization I am astounded at how terrible a structure the church service is, building energy that then doesn't get used at all because they go from that to a break where everyone just mills around! At the very least people should be encouraged to end with a prayer that focuses all that energy) As I danced, I felt it shift from just being my body interacting with the sound, to being my emotions interacting with the words, until it became movement that expressed the song as purely as if I was singing it straight out of the initial inspiration. Like a rebirth of the song, through motion.

Next I lit a rainbow candle and LilyWolf and I chanted my spell for drawing in positive connections, and then lit a green candle and together we chanted the spell for drawing heart connections, three times. At some point I lit vetivert incense, and after chanting the spells we just sat and silently meditated until the incense burned out, repeating the spells once more before the end. We took the candles upstairs and let them burn for a while longer until we went to bed. I re-lit them the next day and plan to light them whenever I am at home for a stretch of time. We infused them with the spell so that every flicker of those candles sends out the same intentions.

So far (within 48 hours), there have been five new sprouts of connection. I'm feeling very positive about the effectiveness of this!


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belenen: (musical -- poetic)
All the music that matters to me: Azure Ray, Cocorosie, M.I.A., Noe Venable, PJ Harvey, Neulander...
Life-changing, soul-etched, cynosure, trulymadlydeeply loved, would definitely cry a shitton at their shows, love the artists as well as the music:
Azure Ray -- indie dream-pop/folk -- Athens, GA
Bat For Lashes* -- indie rock/folktronica -- London, England
Cocorosie* -- experimental electric/folk -- France, Iowa, Hawaii, etc.
Dream Art Science -- electronic/reggae/kemetic -- San Francisco, CA
Massive Attack* -- trip-hop -- Bristol, England
M.I.A. -- hip-hop/electronic -- Hounslow, Greater London, England
Michael Jackson -- pop -- Gary, IN
Neulander -- electronica -- New York and London
Noe Venable -- folk -- San Francisco, CA
PJ Harvey* -- folk rock -- Bridport, Dorset, England
The Cranberries/Dolores O'Riordan -- alternative rock -- Limerick, Ireland

and alllllll the others )
*stars mean I have seen them live (1 star per occasion)


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belenen: (feminist)
prompts 23, 24: my 3 perfect instruments / my first tattoo! and more tattoo desires
Prompt from [livejournal.com profile] topaznebula: If you could select three instruments (voice can be one if desired), any instruments, to be able to perfectly and masterfully play, which would you pick and why?
voice -- because I feel like if I could sing, I could write music, and I feel like I'd be good at coming up with the lyric-line. I'd write about what mattered to me, and people could take it in better as song.
hand drums (like conga drums, djembes, hapi drum, the bohran) -- because they mean so much to me, and I feel like if I knew that I knew how to do it I would drum a LOT because the main thing that stops me is feeling like I can't because I don't know things.
upright bass -- because it is an instrument that gives me shivers and I feel like if I had one and knew how to play it, it would become one of my closest friends.

from [livejournal.com profile] darkestgarden: since you mentioned wanting multiple tattoos in your march 4th post, could you tell us what the possibilities are, how you chose them, and what they mean to you?

I'll give an update to this previous post on the subject: I just got my first tattoo nine days ago!

photos of it and thoughts on it )



more tattoos I want, divided by certainty and then put in the order I want to get them:

PLANS:

left deltoid/shoulder/arm:
a cluster of five-pointed stars of various colors, each star representing a person who has made an impact on my life and the size of each star representing the depth of the impact.

the back of my right wrist:
the words "intersectional / feminist" (slashes are line breaks) with this symbol above it.

the back of my left wrist:
the words "right to knowledge" with a wi-fi symbol above it and a 7-pointed crown of seshat behind it. (I want to get this one and the right wrist one on the same day)

right deltoid:
a black-outlined Quaker 8-pointed star as a 4-point over a 4-point, with a black eye of Horus in the center. The top, diagonal 4-point would have swirls of color from each point, circling around the eye -- green from NW, red from NE, blue from SE, violet from SW. On the bottom, perpendicular star arms would be symbols: a violet feather for openness/honesty on the north, a blue equals sign for equality on the west, a green ankh for reverence on the east, and a red tree for love/interconnectedness on the south. like this, only not sketchy and badly drawn.

center chest, just below collarbone:
Ka symbol with a tree inside it.



HOPES:

on my back, 2 inches below the shoulder line in the center:
a sheela-na-gig who looks half plant and has a figure similar to mine (except the exaggerated vulva of course). Open eyes looking straight ahead, with a smile revealing feline teeth, head tilted down just a little. Skin patterned like leaf veins, no hair.

back:
tree tattoo with realistic bark and abstract green for leaves, with visible roots going down my butt and water around the roots. sorta like this (this one is a maybe because it will be SO FUCKING EXPENSIVE)

Right shoulderblade:
realistic Renenutet, with tail curling around and down the tree trunk.

Left shoulderblade:
a waterstar, in violet edges with water reflection patterns inside

front right shoulder:
the words "bite the sun" stacked, slanting diagonally towards my sternum

front left shoulder:
the words "share the day" stacked, slanting diagonally towards my sternum
sounds: Under Byen - Den Her Sang Handler Om At Få Det Bedste Ud Af Det | Powered by Last.fm
connecting: , , ,


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belenen: (musical)
prompt 14: my top 10 most influential albums
[livejournal.com profile] theindiequeen gave me this ridiculously difficult prompt: What are your top 10 favorite albums of all time?
hahahaha! I couldn't possibly say, I can't rank my loves. But I can TRY tell you which albums had the most impact on my life.

Contact by the Benjamin Gate got me through the loneliest time of my life, gave me something good to hold on to when I most needed it. I felt seen, held, strengthened by it. Even though it has a lot of Jesus-must-be-your-favorite stuff in it I still love it, still feel like singing along, still feel that it has life and meaning for me. I associate it with wild impassioned dancing at every concert, driving 13 hours, flying, writing letters, sending presents; The Benjamin Gate was something I could believe in and look up to at a time in my life when everyone around me was so full of shit, lying all the time. "this is not what I need to be!" and I still deeply love the sound, so fucking much. "Need" still makes me yearn and cry. I've never had a relationship with an artist like I had with The Benjamin Gate. I can still worship with this music.

Everybody Else Is Doing It So Why Can't We by the Cranberries is an album I listened to seeking meaning, asking for answers from Godde. I used it as an oracle; a way to bring me messages. I must have gone to sleep listening to it almost every night for two years. I love all of the Cranberries works but this was my first love. I associate it with waiting, hoping, and hearing what I needed to hear.

World Is Bound By Secret Knots by Noe Venable was my first Noe Venable album and it changed me deeply. It came into my life when I was feeling spiritually lost and it gave me a place to be, a way to feel connected to all things. It nourished me and introduced me to one of my deities (through the song Black Madonna). It is to me as a temple might be to someone else. Summer Storm Journals is a close second, I've felt roots and my own godde self through it. I recently got one of Noe Venable's oldest albums and there was some problematic ableist stuff in it (using other people's experiences as metaphors) and that has me terribly nervous but there wasn't any in the more recent ones and that was 16 years ago (holy shit). I have such unbearably high hopes for the new album, oh dear Godde please let it be what I want from it.

200km/hr in The Wrong Lane/Dangerous And Moving by t.A.T.u. -- yes both, because in my mind they are the same album since I got all the songs together and listened to them like one album. These albums made me feel like I had queer community and helped me to feel validated in myself. And I do love the sound also.

Flutterby by Butterfly Boucher -- this was my first album by this artist. I love the others nearly as much, but this one gives me such beautiful images in my mind, and has more of a magical, mythical focus. I associate it with deviantart because I was really into dA when I first started listening to this.

White Chalk by PJ Harvey -- picking ONE ALBUM from this artist is ridic. But while other of zir albums have songs with intense meaning to me, this is the only one that I sank into with relief. I got this album in May 2009 and through the transformations of that year (breaking up with my partner of 8 years) this album was a guide for me, tapping into my darkness and strength in a way I needed in order to learn to be independent. "All of my being is now in pining / What formerly had cheered me / Now seems / Insignificant"

Tales of a Grasswidow/Grey Oceans by Cocorosie -- Tales of a Grasswidow was my first of their albums, though I had heard a few songs here and there. The unity of scathing dark social commentary on patriarchy and the taking back of spirituality from "sky-god religions" as they call them felt really good for me, and the images they word-painted nourished me. As soon as I felt I had grasped Tales well enough I got Grey Oceans, which resonated even more strongly with me. The surreal appreciation of the mythic and alien in their lyrics was so unique and wonderful for me. I hadn't felt this kind of resonance with an artist since I first discovered Noe Venable. Then I saw them in concert and I cried and my heart beat their rhythms and my veins pulsed with their words, I'd never in my life felt so one with music AND with their performance, which I read as being wild resistance to gender norms and patriarchy in general. Then I got Adventures of Ghosthorse and Stillborn and they broke my heart with the song 'Japan' (not in a good way): it's racist (I think: it gives me that ick feeling but I'm not sure what's wrong with it) and transphobic and misogynist (implies that drag queens want to rape people, implies rape can be desired). I hadn't realized the lyrics when they played it at the concert, but I recognized the tune when I heard it on the album and that means they are still playing it and don't see a problem with it. Although they may have changed the lyrics since and kept the song. I messaged them on twitter because that is the only contact info they had public, but I have no idea if they even saw it. My initial response to that song is to want to cut them out but I've decided that every fucking thing is problematic in some way so I'm going to divorce them from their music and just love the good songs as beings of their own life force.

Hydrogen Burning by Dream Art Science is their only album still, sad :-( but it's really important to me because it speaks of cosmic connection, growth, trees, and Kemetic concepts and deities. I like the sound, it's smooth and meditative. I love the lyrics. "from one atom to another / we are hydrogen"

Mezzanine/Heligoland by Massive Attack are equally important to me. It's harder to articulate why these two (the first and the most recent ones I've listened to). Mezzanine just fits my soul in its sound (and is an album I've had lots of sex to). Heligoland I think is actually important to me because it feels like that's the album where Massive Attack started writing about justice. When I saw them in concert, it was INTENSE, I cried and danced and gasped and panted. They used their platform to educate. I felt all of their songs so much more deeply after feeling the intention live.

Smoke & Fire by Neulander is important to me because there are so many songs on it that I relate to so deeply; about spring, about fighting oppression, about throwing off ties to family. The whole album feels like a walk in a Georgia summer night, alone and strong.

Also quite meaningful but not as much as the above (which are NOT in order by the way):

On a Clear Night by Missy Higgins
The American by Angie Aparo
Hold On Love by Azure Ray
Sugar by Tonic
Spiritchaser by Dead Can Dance
Fur and Gold by Bat For Lashes
Tension and the Spark by Darren Hayes
Deepika by Deepika/Deeyah
Hybrid by Elsiane
Siren by Heather Nova
Still Night, Still Light by Au Revoir Simone
We Are Born by Sia

and there are others that I really love listening to but don't have the same kind of time-tested meaningfulness to me.
sounds: Neulander - Sex, God Money | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (dancy)
prompt 6: three of my spiritual experiences (excluding those with trees)
Topaz's prompt for today: What are the 3 most spiritual experiences you've ever had... excluding interactions with trees. (But plz link back to posts about spiritual interactions with trees in the post) Oh good Godde. I can't possibly do the 'most' because my memory is so shit (and I wouldn't have a clue how to sort them), so I'll tell the first three that come to mind.

When I was 15, I was deeply depressed, and I prayed every day, many times per day, to God to let me die. I didn't feel like it was okay to kill myself (I was very religious) but I didn't want to live; living was torture. I was sent to a christian summer camp and while I was there, I cried a lot and spent a lot of time alone talking to God and wanting to die, feeling completely irrelevant and unseen. At one point after crying for a while I went and stood next to a stone wall, looking over it at water and just feeling empty, when suddenly I felt love flow over me from head to toe like a slow waterfall of warm honey. I was stunned and changed, because it was a tangible feeling of love and for the first time I can remember, I knew I was loved, genuinely and freely. It only lasted about a minute, but it was so real, and there was no other explanation for it than spiritual -- it was and still is the most unambiguously externally-initiated spiritual experience I've ever had. I've never felt anything like it before or since.

And, well, the next that comes to mind is this time when I was about 10 I think, and I was playing in a riverbed next to a covered bridge. I was barefoot (as I was most times back then) and clambering around, imagining worlds in the moss and loving the play of water over rocks. I went to take a step into a crevice and very clearly 'heard' (not with my ears) "no, don't step there" but I had already been trained not to listen, and so I stepped, and nearly sliced off a toe on the bottom or a broken bottle. As my parents rushed me to the hospital, I was euphoric, feeling that God had spoken to me for the first time in my life. Now, I am not so sure it was God -- I think it was more likely the river itself, which I had just been communing with and was very open to, or simply my intuition. Either way, that experience showed me that it was possible to get knowledge from non-physical sources. However it was about 15 years after that before I 'heard' any word-like impressions again.

This isn't one particular experience, but the next set that comes to mind is various concerts, over the years. And at the same time, church. With church it was when music played and I danced that I felt connection to all beings, to Godde, to beauty. I almost always danced. Sometimes it felt like my body was moving on its own. I'd have bursts of clarity and feel resonance of love. At some concerts, I felt the same thing. The Benjamin Gate (many years ago), Bat for Lashes, Beats Antique, Massive Attack, CocoRosie, and Zoe Keating have all been that for me. I'll feel the music move into my body and flow through my veins, I'll dance and breathe the music. I'll get overwhelmed and cry or shiver as a line slides down my spine. Other artists I like don't necessarily give me that -- it has to be an artist that makes music with spiritual meaning to me. Noe Venable has given me this with music even not-live, which is almost unheard of and is the reason why I feel a need (more than a desire) to see zir perform live.


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belenen: (musical -- poetic)
musicsharing: gifts for Topaz
because you're a catalyst


bits of lyrics, titles and artists )

because I'm in love with you


bits of lyrics, titles and artists )
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belenen: (gender abolitionist)
privilege & oppression: books, privilege checklists, communities, news, movies, comics, music, blogs
gateway books:
on gender identity and expression:
"Nobody Passes" by Mattilda and
"Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation" by Kate Bornstein & S. Bear Bergman
on disability:
"Staring Back" edited by Kenny Fries and
"Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability" by Robert McRuer & Michael F. Bérubé
on feminism:
"Feminism Is for Everybody: Passionate Politics" by bell hooks and
"A Guy's Guide to Feminism" by Michael Kaufman & Michael Kimmel
on racism:
"Racism Without Racists" by Eduardo Bonilla-Silva and
"Myths America Lives By" by Richard T. Hughes

Learn a little about your privileges:
a quick summary of what privilege is
privilege is playing the game of life on "easy"
a more in-depth explanation of privilege
if you're white
if you're male
if you're cisgender/cissexual (not transgender or not transsexual)
if your gender is part of the binary (either exclusively male or exclusively female)
if you're straight
if you're non-disabled (related microaggressions)
if you're neurotypical (not autistic and don't have Asperger's) and don't have a mental illness.
if you're not poor
if you're monogamous
if you're not "fat" -- if you think having more fat than average is bad, risky, unhealthy, etc, please read The Fat FAQs including all the links!

How to be an ally if you are a person with privilege
Bearing witness (overcoming some of the pitfalls of being an ally with privilege)
How to be a better ally to trans* people

intro info about marginalized groups who don't get a lot of press:
nativeappropriations on the problem with the hipster headress: cultural appropriation for "irony"
intersexroadshow on how sex isn't binary either: intersex genitalia illustrated and explained (with sketches)

community:
genderfork -- a supportive community for the expression of identities across the gender spectrum.
tqnation -- social network specifically for transgender and genderqueer community.
tsroadmap -- transitioning information and support

news and analysis:
FWD: feminists with disabilities -- on the intersection of disability and feminism (now archive-only, but FULL of resources)
stuff queer people need to know -- news, lengthy resource lists
racialicious -- on the intersection of race and pop culture
colorlines -- a daily news site about important racial matters
The Transadvocate --"transgender advocates in the ever growing blogosphere"
prettyqueer -- writings by queer people from all over
geekfeminism -- "exists to support, encourage, and discuss issues facing women in geek communities, including science and technology, gaming, SF fandom, and more."
Cisnormativity -- "confronting cisnormativity, homonormativity, heteronormativity, cissexism, trans enmity, trans misogyny, acts of cis supremacy, and the language of gender"
More Than Men -- "a social media project for men to stand up together to take an active role in diversity advocacy"

Ways to participate in making change for non-normative and/or oppressed peoples:
Locally:
CHRIS kids -- helping LGBTQ kids in Georgia
lost-n-found -- nonprofit working to take homeless LGBT youth off Atlanta's streets
SPARK -- reproductive justice (based in Atlanta)
Positive Impact -- Atlanta clinic working to help HIV positive people
Georgia Equality -- working for legislative equality for LGBTQ Georgians
Prevent Child Abuse Georgia
and non-locally:
the disabled young people's collective
generation five -- stopping child abuse in 5 generations
Legal Momentum
National Center for Transgender Equality
Soulforce -- stopping spiritual violence
Full Radius Dance -- a wheelchair-inclusive dance team
Oyate -- a Native American/American Indian advocacy and education organization
Justice Now -- helping women in prison, and fighting against the industrial prison complex

book/movie lists:
Bibrary Book Lust: LGBT Speculative Fiction Award Winners
Lambda Scifi recommended reading list
big queer movie list (with some reviews)

comics:
Khaos Komix: "a comic about gender and sexuality. It follows the lives of 8 main characters... finding themselves, falling in love, lust and like and how hard they fight to get there." Queer and trans characters!
YU+ME: dream: "a surreal love story. It is part high school romance, part journey/adventure story, and part total-mind-fuck."
Unicorn Jelly: a beautiful, imaginative metaphorical tale with lots of queer characters.

musicians who are out and sing about it:
Rae Spoon (out as trans, writes some about gender)
Sam Sparro (out as gay, writes some about social justice)
Ke / onetribe (out as gay, uses deliberately androgynous vocals and lyrics)
Missy Higgins (out as bi, writes some songs that show it)

blogs of queer and trans importance:
A Radical TransFeminist -- "queer issues, radical feminist issues, trans* issues and their many interplays."
Transmeditations -- on "transgender and queer identities, politics and liberation; film, media and television critical analyses; sex work and sex workers rights; fat politics and fat liberation movement; feminism, transfeminism and feminist theory and activism"
Tranifesto -- "offering information and opinion about transgender and transsexual issues and experience from someone who’s been there"
supermattachine -- "I have plans: overthrow oppressive forces, destroy rape culture, smash cissexism, demolish transphobia, rip apart ableism, fuck up whiteness and racism, stomp on sizeism, knit lace curtains."
Taking Up Too Much Space -- "a blog by a Chicago transsexual queer/woman who’s tired of making herself as small as possible to fit the demands of trans misogynistic feminism and trans activism"
Questioning Transphobia -- examining and critiquing transphobic events/attitudes
transactivisty -- blog by a Latina queer trans woman, from a personal perspective.
Sincerely, Natalie Reed -- "discussing transgenderism, trans-related issues, gender and sexuality, as well as other interests of mine like addiction (for example), from a specifically feminist and secular, skeptical angle."
TransGriot -- "news, opinions, commentary, history and a little creative writing from a proud African-American transwoman about the world around her"
leftytgirl -- personal blog of an American trans woman living in Canada, who cares about "science, truth, beauty, justice, laughter and love."


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belenen: (progressing)
important events in 2011 / becoming an effective catalyst for the change I want to see in the world


2011 was a whirlwind of growth and renewal; looking back, I cannot believe how much I've changed and how much my life has changed. I feel like I wouldn't even recognize my year-ago self. And yet so much has changed since the turn of the year... exponential change. I'm so much more fierce, nourished, confident, and aware than last year. I've created the sources for art, creativity, and intimacy that I want; I've found avenues for developing change; I've started stripping away the fear that blocked me from being a catalyst for equality.

In 2011 I gained a much deeper understanding of oppression, both historically and in its current manifestations; Kyle and I went through so many shifts, deepening our relationship and creating positive ways of managing conflict; Kyle became a feminist/equalist; I met lots of important new people; Kyle and I started doing energy work regularly on ourselves and each other; I was in continuous growth and needed rest which I didn't know how to take, so throughout the year I had several depressions and learned how to notice when I needed rest; I started hosting crafty parties! and now have a source of amazing creation in my life ♥; I met the Angel Oak, participated in a TreeSpirit shoot, and had so many incredible magical experiences with Kyle in Charleston; I realized my intersexedness in a profound way and began living it, though not sharing the details of meaning with folk (and it's still too scary to write about though I hope that will change soon); I experienced my first burn, Euphoria, and loved it -- then experienced my second, Alchemy, and did not like it; Aurilion and I had several bursts of intense connection; I fell in love with Abby and we started dating, quickly moving into a time-committed relationship; Arizona and I started dating again; Kyle and Adi started dating; I became part of the formation of a queer group on campus; I sortakinda dated Eanox for a short time; I had my first successful anti-oppression experience and felt thrilled with the possibilities of further action; I went to Transcending Boundaries with Kyle; I started forming tribe (a truly interconnected group of people all of whom were building connection with each other).

important events in 2011 )


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belenen: (progressing)
important events in 2011 / becoming an effective catalyst for the change I want to see in the world


2011 was a whirlwind of growth and renewal; looking back, I cannot believe how much I've changed and how much my life has changed. I feel like I wouldn't even recognize my year-ago self. And yet so much has changed since the turn of the year... exponential change. I'm so much more fierce, nourished, confident, and aware than last year. I've created the sources for art, creativity, and intimacy that I want; I've found avenues for developing change; I've started stripping away the fear that blocked me from being a catalyst for equality.

In 2011 I gained a much deeper understanding of oppression, both historically and in its current manifestations; Kyle and I went through so many shifts, deepening our relationship and creating positive ways of managing conflict; Kyle became a feminist/equalist; I met lots of important new people; Kyle and I started doing energy work regularly on ourselves and each other; I was in continuous growth and needed rest which I didn't know how to take, so throughout the year I had several depressions and learned how to notice when I needed rest; I started hosting crafty parties! and now have a source of amazing creation in my life ♥; I met the Angel Oak, participated in a TreeSpirit shoot, and had so many incredible magical experiences with Kyle in Charleston; I realized my intersexedness in a profound way and began living it, though not sharing the details of meaning with folk (and it's still too scary to write about though I hope that will change soon); I experienced my first burn, Euphoria, and loved it -- then experienced my second, Alchemy, and did not like it; Aurilion and I had several bursts of intense connection; I fell in love with Abby and we started dating, quickly moving into a time-committed relationship; Arizona and I started dating again; Kyle and Adi started dating; I became part of the formation of a queer group on campus; I sortakinda dated Eanox for a short time; I had my first successful anti-oppression experience and felt thrilled with the possibilities of further action; I went to Transcending Boundaries with Kyle; I started forming tribe (a truly interconnected group of people all of whom were building connection with each other).

important events in 2011 )


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belenen: (ecstatic)
22 songs about Kyle & Belenen -- 1 year anniversary!
Today marks Kyle's and my first anniversary <3 I made a mix about our connection -- flowing from Kyle to me and from me to Kyle and twining.


(don't refresh the page before you finish listening, because it will randomize them after the first listen *grr*)

Bel <3s Kyle: 2011 Anniversary (a zip file of all the songs)

individual downloads (to be added later) & lyrics )
sounds: Flunk - See Through You | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (ecstatic)
22 songs about Kyle & Belenen -- 1 year anniversary!
Today marks Kyle's and my first anniversary <3 I made a mix about our connection -- flowing from Kyle to me and from me to Kyle and twining.


(don't refresh the page before you finish listening, because it will randomize them after the first listen *grr*)

Bel <3s Kyle: 2011 Anniversary (a zip file of all the songs)

individual downloads (to be added later) & lyrics )
sounds: Flunk - See Through You | Powered by Last.fm
connecting: , , ,


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belenen: (tree elder)
Charleston with Kyle: Treespirit shoot, amazing people, miracles and disasters, animal communion







130 photos )


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belenen: (tree elder)
Charleston with Kyle: Treespirit shoot, amazing people, miracles and disasters, animal communion







130 photos )


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belenen: (ecstatic)
important events in 2010 / overwhelming change, desire, and passion wrapped in community
a drawing titled "Adolescence" by Norman Lindsay
& a fractal titled "Conception" by sideoutman:



2010 was such a huge year that I'm intimidated by the idea of trying to sum it up, but combining "Conception" and "Adolescence" is a good start. The fractal is expressive of a coiled, freshly-created energy and purpose, which I certainly conceived in 2010. The drawing (oh Norman Lindsay I love you <3) is full of exploration and communication and relating. I see myself in quite a few of the characters, and the harpies and sphinxes with their worshipful open faces speak to me of turning lack and mystery into love and knowledge. The horned characters make me especially happy, as the presence of Pan in my life this year has been quiet but oh-so-profound.

Last January I declared 2010 the year of passion, and oh GOD/DESS yes it was! both good and bad kinds. It started off with a BANG -- hate (which I hadn't felt in years) and fury (over the ex-partner), followed by a few months of stress and worry (mostly over finances), then a few days of delirious happiness (in an almost-triad with strong energetic exchange), then depression and anger (break-up pain and mistreatment), then an explosion of sheer joy (Arizona!) which increased (Serendipity!) and increased (Chip!) and increased (Kyle!) for two months, then contentment and productivity (living & working with Serendipity), then stress and shifting (school again! culture shock, not dating justben actively), then horrible pain (herpes AGH), then exploring/adventuring inspired by Kyle (meeting more people, going new places, having more sexperiences), then an emotional breakdown as I finally reach my coping limit (so much change! so much intensity!), then my first burn-type event!, then breaking up with Arizona, then lots of intoxication with dancing and kissing, and lots of friendship exploration (mostly in Kyle's social group).

Or, most everything I expressed gratitude for at the beginning of the year. It was DEFINITELY "filled with all the love and sex and joy and passion and boldness" that I could handle -- and I was able to handle more than I thought possible. And I certainly met more people with whom I connect deeply, and learned more about sex and the role it is to play in my life. And for the first time, I've experienced being satisfied by the amount of loving touch I get, and for the first time since the Wynnes I've felt fully understood and appreciated and accepted and desired. And I've become more comfortable sharing my art (I did photoshoots! with people I didn't know well at the time!) and became healthier. The only thing that I feel didn't increase is my understanding of my spiritual connection with nature and having my lil sis live with/near me, so those move to my 2011 presumptuous thanks :D

important events in 2010 )


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belenen: (ecstatic)
important events in 2010 / overwhelming change, desire, and passion wrapped in community
a drawing titled "Adolescence" by Norman Lindsay
& a fractal titled "Conception" by sideoutman:



2010 was such a huge year that I'm intimidated by the idea of trying to sum it up, but combining "Conception" and "Adolescence" is a good start. The fractal is expressive of a coiled, freshly-created energy and purpose, which I certainly conceived in 2010. The drawing (oh Norman Lindsay I love you <3) is full of exploration and communication and relating. I see myself in quite a few of the characters, and the harpies and sphinxes with their worshipful open faces speak to me of turning lack and mystery into love and knowledge. The horned characters make me especially happy, as the presence of Pan in my life this year has been quiet but oh-so-profound.

Last January I declared 2010 the year of passion, and oh GOD/DESS yes it was! both good and bad kinds. It started off with a BANG -- hate (which I hadn't felt in years) and fury (over the ex-partner), followed by a few months of stress and worry (mostly over finances), then a few days of delirious happiness (in an almost-triad with strong energetic exchange), then depression and anger (break-up pain and mistreatment), then an explosion of sheer joy (Arizona!) which increased (Serendipity!) and increased (Chip!) and increased (Kyle!) for two months, then contentment and productivity (living & working with Serendipity), then stress and shifting (school again! culture shock, not dating justben actively), then horrible pain (herpes AGH), then exploring/adventuring inspired by Kyle (meeting more people, going new places, having more sexperiences), then an emotional breakdown as I finally reach my coping limit (so much change! so much intensity!), then my first burn-type event!, then breaking up with Arizona, then lots of intoxication with dancing and kissing, and lots of friendship exploration (mostly in Kyle's social group).

Or, most everything I expressed gratitude for at the beginning of the year. It was DEFINITELY "filled with all the love and sex and joy and passion and boldness" that I could handle -- and I was able to handle more than I thought possible. And I certainly met more people with whom I connect deeply, and learned more about sex and the role it is to play in my life. And for the first time, I've experienced being satisfied by the amount of loving touch I get, and for the first time since the Wynnes I've felt fully understood and appreciated and accepted and desired. And I've become more comfortable sharing my art (I did photoshoots! with people I didn't know well at the time!) and became healthier. The only thing that I feel didn't increase is my understanding of my spiritual connection with nature and having my lil sis live with/near me, so those move to my 2011 presumptuous thanks :D

important events in 2010 )


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belenen: (rainbowarrior)
my first (mini-)burn! SoutheastDecompression: drumming / learning / drinking / dancing
This weekend I went to Southeast Decompression, a mini-burn being held at The Colaboratory. It was my first burn-type experience and wow... I had such a wild time. I went with Kyle (but ze's a wanderer and so am I so we didn't spend all that much time together) and after a short wander we took our drums from the car and started drumming...

I HAVE drummed in public before but only when there were enough other people around to drown me out -- but this time I just fucking threw myself into it, didn't care at all who heard my mistakes (and there was only one other drum, so people could hear them! and people were right there! and some people were dancing to the beat I was making!) and oh GOD what a feeling. Drumming is in my BLOOD, it's me, and while I wish I was more skilled, I need to just do it anyway (and learn properly later maybe). I got so deeply into it I didn't realize how hard I was hitting or how long it went and I ended up with massive bruises on my hands (which are still hurting a lot two days later). but it was SO worth it.

learning, drinking! )

and OH! the DANCING! the DJs were amazing and the music just kept calling to me. I love that I've gotten more fit over the summer because I was able to dance and dance until my soul was ready to stop instead of when my body demanded it!!!!!!!! THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY!!! And I danced more freely than ever before and I felt so amazingly present and full of music and the people around me danced just as unselfconsciously. And two days later I still hurt all over my outside upper legs (I suppose my inner thighs get a workout more often, heh) and that just makes me happy.

I'm not sure how much anonymity to give people so I'm going to put all the interactions with people in a separate f-locked post :D If you wanna see it and you're not on my flist, email me (belenen at gmail) and I might send it to you (if I don't know you at all and you've never commented it's unlikely, but if we've interacted somehow I probably will).
sounds: Florence + the Machine - Drumming Song | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (rainbowarrior)
my first (mini-)burn! SoutheastDecompression: drumming / learning / drinking / dancing
This weekend I went to Southeast Decompression, a mini-burn being held at The Colaboratory. It was my first burn-type experience and wow... I had such a wild time. I went with Kyle (but ze's a wanderer and so am I so we didn't spend all that much time together) and after a short wander we took our drums from the car and started drumming...

I HAVE drummed in public before but only when there were enough other people around to drown me out -- but this time I just fucking threw myself into it, didn't care at all who heard my mistakes (and there was only one other drum, so people could hear them! and people were right there! and some people were dancing to the beat I was making!) and oh GOD what a feeling. Drumming is in my BLOOD, it's me, and while I wish I was more skilled, I need to just do it anyway (and learn properly later maybe). I got so deeply into it I didn't realize how hard I was hitting or how long it went and I ended up with massive bruises on my hands (which are still hurting a lot two days later). but it was SO worth it.

learning, drinking! )

and OH! the DANCING! the DJs were amazing and the music just kept calling to me. I love that I've gotten more fit over the summer because I was able to dance and dance until my soul was ready to stop instead of when my body demanded it!!!!!!!! THIS MAKES ME SO HAPPY!!! And I danced more freely than ever before and I felt so amazingly present and full of music and the people around me danced just as unselfconsciously. And two days later I still hurt all over my outside upper legs (I suppose my inner thighs get a workout more often, heh) and that just makes me happy.

I'm not sure how much anonymity to give people so I'm going to put all the interactions with people in a separate f-locked post :D If you wanna see it and you're not on my flist, email me (belenen at gmail) and I might send it to you (if I don't know you at all and you've never commented it's unlikely, but if we've interacted somehow I probably will).
sounds: Florence + the Machine - Drumming Song | Powered by Last.fm
connecting: , , , , , , , ,


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belenen: (wild)
speed-living / moved in at Serendipity / the taste of my life / Kyle: wanderlustin open-hearted bard
I know I haven't written in ages upon ages -- there has been just SO MUCH happening I've not even had the time to check my email. And I JUST realized that it's been an entire MONTH. I thought it had been two weeks because my life has practically been on fast-forward. I've been sick for the past three weeks or so, I think mainly because of the pace of life. It seems to be settling some now and hopefully that means I'll recover.

So, I moved in at Serendipity on the 18th and I've started working in exchange for room and board (mainly helping to fix up their old house so it can be rented out). I'm nervous about it because having business arrangements with people I care about has mostly led to broken relationships. But I do have the one example of that NOT happening (the Wynnes) and this feels more like that than the others did, so I'm hopeful that this will turn out to be mutually beneficial and not slanted one way or the other. It helps that they have experience with this sort of arrangement.

I want to write about the incredible beauty of love and change but words are so damn pale and my heart spends itself all day long in the unspoken poetry of kissing and biting and caressing and hugging and eye contact, and yes words but they're not the kind that drip glitter and petals -- they're the kind that build glorious-but-sharp castles out of shared pain and joy, desire and wonder, fear and hope. They're salted with tears and spiced with blood. Everything is so complex and blended. I live in constant sharing -- what are you thinking? what are you feeling? with almost never a serious refusal/absence of answer (Arizona WILL answer "nothing" when ze wants to tease, which is pretty much whenever the answer involves desire :-p). I've yearned for that for so long, so long. Daily communication, especially the sharing of emotional reactions, is so important to me. You know how my yearly Hannah-visits were such a source of joy and growth for me? this is like that, only with more people and for a longer time (I'm soooo yearning to have Hannah and Nick come meet everyone, oh so much).

And I've not written about Kyle really at all yet!

We're about 6 weeks into this unexpected ebullient mutual orbit (we'd seen each other maybe three times and never had a real conversation before the spontaneous hang-out which ended in kisses and my heart flinging itself at zir and three days later love-confessions). Kyle is... incredible. Kyle has what I think of as a tumbleweed spirit* -- ze has wandering feet and a passionate love for chaos (whether fortuitous or no). Holding zir hand and walking is an invitation to adventure; I'm so thrilled to have found a wildchild who wants to share life with me (for my heart is a child that stumbles lonely for the arms of the wild). We are strays and if you feed us we'll keep coming back but close the door behind us and we panic. We've been smiled upon by the Deity I've yet to speak of here. I know that ze is one I can nestle under trestles with and one I can make the most ridiculous 'mistakes' with and one who also sees that beauty in the dark and the dirty and the broken. And ze's a bard, and I mean that in the truest and most sacred way. Ze wears zir violin nearly everywhere and offers gifts of living song to anyone who shows an openness to receive -- and sometimes just to Music, and every now and then to Love. And oh, I've never met anyone so clearly and constantly open, seemingly down to core. The amount of bravery in that absolutely breaks my heart (in that way that only the most intense beauty can). How ze came to practice openness/honesty so constantly without any encouragement I cannot even understand but I am so grateful.


*edited after I learned that "gypsy" is a racial slur.
sounds: Bat for Lashes - Pearl's Dream | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (wild)
speed-living / moved in at Serendipity / the taste of my life / Kyle: wanderlustin open-hearted bard
I know I haven't written in ages upon ages -- there has been just SO MUCH happening I've not even had the time to check my email. And I JUST realized that it's been an entire MONTH. I thought it had been two weeks because my life has practically been on fast-forward. I've been sick for the past three weeks or so, I think mainly because of the pace of life. It seems to be settling some now and hopefully that means I'll recover.

So, I moved in at Serendipity on the 18th and I've started working in exchange for room and board (mainly helping to fix up their old house so it can be rented out). I'm nervous about it because having business arrangements with people I care about has mostly led to broken relationships. But I do have the one example of that NOT happening (the Wynnes) and this feels more like that than the others did, so I'm hopeful that this will turn out to be mutually beneficial and not slanted one way or the other. It helps that they have experience with this sort of arrangement.

I want to write about the incredible beauty of love and change but words are so damn pale and my heart spends itself all day long in the unspoken poetry of kissing and biting and caressing and hugging and eye contact, and yes words but they're not the kind that drip glitter and petals -- they're the kind that build glorious-but-sharp castles out of shared pain and joy, desire and wonder, fear and hope. They're salted with tears and spiced with blood. Everything is so complex and blended. I live in constant sharing -- what are you thinking? what are you feeling? with almost never a serious refusal/absence of answer (Arizona WILL answer "nothing" when ze wants to tease, which is pretty much whenever the answer involves desire :-p). I've yearned for that for so long, so long. Daily communication, especially the sharing of emotional reactions, is so important to me. You know how my yearly Hannah-visits were such a source of joy and growth for me? this is like that, only with more people and for a longer time (I'm soooo yearning to have Hannah and Nick come meet everyone, oh so much).

And I've not written about Kyle really at all yet! remedying that! )
sounds: Bat for Lashes - Pearl's Dream | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (exuviate)
more memory-bank posting: meeting Koronah, time w Anita & Kyle & Chip & Christa & Ben / visiting Ace
more list form posting -- the 22nd through the 28th )
sounds: Nina Simone - Feeling Good | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (exuviate)
more memory-bank posting: meeting Koronah, time w Anita & Kyle & Chip & Christa & Ben / visiting Ace
more list form posting -- the 22nd through the 28th )
sounds: Nina Simone - Feeling Good | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (connate)
Arizona ♥ "The Ratio of Freckles to Stars"
I've just spent the last two hours hunting through my music to find a song that expressed how I feel about Arizona. I was just going to play it on repeat for ages but it's so perfect I want to share:

The Ratio of Freckles to Stars -- Halou )
sounds: Halou - The Ratio Of Freckles To Stars | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (connate)
Arizona ♥ "The Ratio of Freckles to Stars"
I've just spent the last two hours hunting through my music to find a song that expressed how I feel about Arizona. I was just going to play it on repeat for ages but it's so perfect I want to share:

The Ratio of Freckles to Stars -- Halou )
sounds: Halou - The Ratio Of Freckles To Stars | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (heart in my throat)
I'm in love: Electric Feel ♥
I've been listening to Electric Feel pretty much constantly for the past two days, and dancing EVERY TIME I HEAR IT. If this song were a person I'd call in sick (which I've never done when I'm not actually sick) and stay home all day fucking and kissing and drawing patterns on zir skin and forgetting to eat and sleeping so close I could hardly breathe. *giggles* I'm seriously so mad for this song and I have no idea why! Usually I only fall for songs like this when the lyrics speak me better than I can.

lyricsssss )


It's like it's stripping me of all the random costume bits I've accumulated, helping me find my core again. GOD I LOVE THIS SONG. Seriously, if it were a person I'd be as in love as I've ever been with anyone. Shock me clean, mmm yes.
sounds: MGMT - Electric Feel | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (heart in my throat)
I'm in love: Electric Feel ♥
I've been listening to Electric Feel pretty much constantly for the past two days, and dancing EVERY TIME I HEAR IT. If this song were a person I'd call in sick (which I've never done when I'm not actually sick) and stay home all day fucking and kissing and drawing patterns on zir skin and forgetting to eat and sleeping so close I could hardly breathe. *giggles* I'm seriously so mad for this song and I have no idea why! Usually I only fall for songs like this when the lyrics speak me better than I can.

lyricsssss )


It's like it's stripping me of all the random costume bits I've accumulated, helping me find my core again. GOD I LOVE THIS SONG. Seriously, if it were a person I'd be as in love as I've ever been with anyone. Shock me clean, mmm yes.
sounds: MGMT - Electric Feel | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (plant magic)
important events in 2009 / tangled joy and pain, vibrant growth
"Curl and Tangle, Color and Thorn" by me:



This is a photo I took on a trip with Ben to Big Trees in November. It expresses the entire year to me -- the sharp pains and vibrant joys, and most of all the crazy tangled unforseeability of it. And the focus too -- not seeing far behind or much ahead. Oh, what a wild ride.

I dedicated 2009 to risk-taking (since the focus of 2008 became faith-building instead) and I feel that I fully met that goal. I practiced living in the moment, doing things because they feel right without concern for how they might turn sour; being with Viv, going to San Francisco, deciding to end my partnership with [ex], beginning a relationship with Ben, moving in with Ash, hanging out with people I didn't know well and didn't feel miraculously connected to, couchsurfing, driving a rental car. Those are all things I wouldn't have done a year ago out of a habit of thinking "but what if bad stuff happens."

This year brought me the greatest disappointment and the greatest joy I've ever experienced. It's been such a blend, every joy right next to suffering (and vice versa). This is the first year I have had local friends since I was 20, and the first time in my life I've had a sense of community, an actual CIRCLE of people whom I love and feel that I belong with. It used to be so rare that I spent time with friends that every single time was intensely noteworthy and now it has become NORMAL to me! I feel immensely rich. I get hugs at least every single week -- after YEARS of feeling like a leper because no one touched me. I speak and people listen and care and respond -- after years of having no one to talk with in person (well, no one who cared about the same things or was very interested in my thoughts). I am so profoundly grateful. Thank you Deity, thank you universe, thank you localtribe, thank you everyone and everything!

important events in 2009 )


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belenen: (Default)
important events in 2009 / tangled joy and pain, vibrant growth
"Curl and Tangle, Color and Thorn" by me:



This is a photo I took on a trip with Ben to Big Trees in November. It expresses the entire year to me -- the sharp pains and vibrant joys, and most of all the crazy tangled unforseeability of it. And the focus too -- not seeing far behind or much ahead. Oh, what a wild ride.

I dedicated 2009 to risk-taking (since the focus of 2008 became faith-building instead) and I feel that I fully met that goal. I practiced living in the moment, doing things because they feel right without concern for how they might turn sour; being with Viv, going to San Francisco, deciding to end my partnership with [ex], beginning a relationship with Ben, moving in with Ash, hanging out with people I didn't know well and didn't feel miraculously connected to, couchsurfing, driving a rental car. Those are all things I wouldn't have done a year ago out of a habit of thinking "but what if bad stuff happens."

This year brought me the greatest disappointment and the greatest joy I've ever experienced. It's been such a blend, every joy right next to suffering (and vice versa). This is the first year I have had local friends since I was 20, and the first time in my life I've had a sense of community, an actual CIRCLE of people whom I love and feel that I belong with. It used to be so rare that I spent time with friends that every single time was intensely noteworthy and now it has become NORMAL to me! I feel immensely rich. I get hugs at least every single week -- after YEARS of feeling like a leper because no one touched me. I speak and people listen and care and respond -- after years of having no one to talk with in person (well, no one who cared about the same things or was very interested in my thoughts). I am so profoundly grateful. Thank you Deity, thank you universe, thank you localtribe, thank you everyone and everything!

important events in 2009 )


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belenen: (eccentric)

Oh God/dess I love how dancing to stupid music with a sexy beat totally TOTES makes me gigglehi9ghhappy *bounce bounce*
sounds: Baby Bash/Frankie J - Suga Suga | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (eccentric)

Oh God/dess I love how dancing to stupid music with a sexy beat totally TOTES makes me gigglehi9ghhappy *bounce bounce*
sounds: Baby Bash/Frankie J - Suga Suga | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (snarling)
I kept all of our vows, ze broke ALL of them! dishonorable and full of lies
and the ex loses the last shred of respect I had for zir )

heh, oh how appropriate the music I chose. Some part of me fucking knew and did it anyway. wow. I feel comforted by that. Me and my brave-or-masochistic heart.

Don't hold yourself like that
You'll hurt your knees
I kissed your mouth and back
that's all I need
Don't build your world around
volcanoes melt you down

What I am to you is not real
What I am to you, you do not need
What I am to you is not what you mean to me

You give me miles and miles of mountains
And I'll ask for the sea

This is nothing new
No no just another phase of finding what I really need
Is what makes me bleed
sounds: Damien Rice - Volcano | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (Default)
I kept all of our vows, ze broke ALL of them! dishonorable and full of lies
and the ex loses the last shred of respect I had for zir )

heh, oh how appropriate the music I chose. Some part of me fucking knew and did it anyway. wow. I feel comforted by that. Me and my brave-or-masochistic heart.

Don't hold yourself like that
You'll hurt your knees
I kissed your mouth and back
that's all I need
Don't build your world around
volcanoes melt you down

What I am to you is not real
What I am to you, you do not need
What I am to you is not what you mean to me

You give me miles and miles of mountains
And I'll ask for the sea

This is nothing new
No no just another phase of finding what I really need
Is what makes me bleed
sounds: Damien Rice - Volcano | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (christmassy)
Christmas surprise orchestrated by Ash & S, involving Anna & Shel & Kate & Kay & Nikki & & &!!!
So I had the worst Christmas of my life (crying almost all day in rage and pain over the ex) BUT there was an incredibly beautiful gift that helped me get through it ♥ Ash had the amazing idea of contacting quite a few of my friends and asking them to send images that ze could use to make ornaments for me. Ze and S gave me little hints for like a week, and then the day before Christmas Eve, S lugged a tree up the stairs and they decorated it with the printed-out images and awesome ornaments made by Nikki from recycled (♥!) Christmas cards and various lovely little bits. Ash hasn't forwarded the emails yet so I am not sure who all participated, but S gave me two little black cats (in honor of 'Nika, whom ze refers to as "devil cat"), Anna sent me three GORGEOUS glass angel ornaments, Shel made a DARLING little felt star, Kate sent in a photo of zirself standing in the snow holding a Merry Christmas sign (eeeee!!!!!), Kay sent in three photos of zirself (eye, hands-in-a-heart, and face with a little sign that said "James!"), Kelley sent a photo of zirself making a hands-in-a-heart sign, and I know that SabR, Angie, Jess, Jen, Deb, Celina, Karen, Gayle, Anika, and several others participated but I am not sure who sent what. When I get the emails I will probably post the images ;-) Also Celina and Jen and Anna sent me Christmas cards ♥ I was so so so so touched by the idea and by all the people who participated, thank you so so so much loves. I so needed that and I will treasure my little handmade (and hand-chosen) ornaments forever! ♥ Also S is going to take the tree to be made into mulch later which makes me happier, no waste ♥ You are all so wonderful and I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE you, thank you so much ♥ *kisses*

Oh, and lil sis gave me an AMAZING delicate antique-looking metal pipe which has a decoration that looks like Cthulhu (to me) which I so totally intend to use, a glass leaf pendant (which I wear backwards to show off the swirly green), and pretty little paper scrolls. I love love love how those gifts are all so me! Oh, and the bioparents sent me some money so I bought myself Radiohead's "The Bends" and Dolores O'Riordan's "No Baggage" and Aqualung's "Strange and Beautiful" from the used CD store (pretty awesome finds, especially the new Dolores album!) :D


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belenen: (christmassy)
Christmas surprise orchestrated by Ash & S, involving Anna & Shel & Kate & Kay & Nikki & & &!!!
So I had the worst Christmas of my life (crying almost all day in rage and pain over the ex) BUT there was an incredibly beautiful gift that helped me get through it ♥ Ash had the amazing idea of contacting quite a few of my friends and asking them to send images that ze could use to make ornaments for me. Ze and S gave me little hints for like a week, and then the day before Christmas Eve, S lugged a tree up the stairs and they decorated it with the printed-out images and awesome ornaments made by Nikki from recycled (♥!) Christmas cards and various lovely little bits. Ash hasn't forwarded the emails yet so I am not sure who all participated, but S gave me two little black cats (in honor of 'Nika, whom ze refers to as "devil cat"), Anna sent me three GORGEOUS glass angel ornaments, Shel made a DARLING little felt star, Kate sent in a photo of zirself standing in the snow holding a Merry Christmas sign (eeeee!!!!!), Kay sent in three photos of zirself (eye, hands-in-a-heart, and face with a little sign that said "James!"), Kelley sent a photo of zirself making a hands-in-a-heart sign, and I know that SabR, Angie, Jess, Jen, Deb, Celina, Karen, Gayle, Anika, and several others participated but I am not sure who sent what. When I get the emails I will probably post the images ;-) Also Celina and Jen and Anna sent me Christmas cards ♥ I was so so so so touched by the idea and by all the people who participated, thank you so so so much loves. I so needed that and I will treasure my little handmade (and hand-chosen) ornaments forever! ♥ Also S is going to take the tree to be made into mulch later which makes me happier, no waste ♥ You are all so wonderful and I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE you, thank you so much ♥ *kisses*

Oh, and lil sis gave me an AMAZING delicate antique-looking metal pipe which has a decoration that looks like Cthulhu (to me) which I so totally intend to use, a glass leaf pendant (which I wear backwards to show off the swirly green), and pretty little paper scrolls. I love love love how those gifts are all so me! Oh, and the bioparents sent me some money so I bought myself Radiohead's "The Bends" and Dolores O'Riordan's "No Baggage" and Aqualung's "Strange and Beautiful" from the used CD store (pretty awesome finds, especially the new Dolores album!) :D


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belenen: (strong)
posty mcpostsalot appreciates Alanis
this is so exactly fucking IT that it makes me laugh a little.

Alanis' 'You Oughta Know' )
sounds: Alanis Morissette - You Oughta Know | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (strong)
posty mcpostsalot appreciates Alanis
this is so exactly fucking IT that it makes me laugh a little.

Alanis' 'You Oughta Know' )
sounds: Alanis Morissette - You Oughta Know | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (artistic)
music sharing & concert-going w Ben / spiritual experience w Ash / talking art & poetry w Ben
This week has been crazily eventful. Last Wednesday Ben came over and we shared music -- ze introduced me to some of zir favorite groups (complete with pauses for explanation, which I LOVED because for me it adds so much to hear in a person's own words what is important) and then we listened to three Massive Attack albums while kissing and cuddling ♥ Thursday I was emotionally exhausted in a way I haven't been since the first time Aurilion came to visit, but fortunately I knew what was causing it so I felt oddly cheery about feeling crappy.

Friday I impulsively decided to go to a Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions concert with Ben, which was rather out of character for me because I prefer to get to know a band before seeing them live -- it really adds a lot for me to know the lyrics (and on first listen I can't 'hear' the lyrics because I'm too distracted by the overall sound). Ohhh, that was SO the right choice. I think I would have enjoyed it if I'd gone alone, but it wouldn't have been worth the cost and the drive. However, experiencing it with Ben was the most incredible musical experience I've ever had (except maybe for The Benjamin Gate's last concert) -- I cannot express the sense of living the music that we shared. I mean, I don't know how ze experienced it (except that afterward ze said ze felt drugged) but I felt like we merged with each other and the music and just breathed it, became extensions of it. I have stepped into music like that before, but doing it WITH someone is exponentially more intense, more beautiful. And if it was that incredible with music that didn't have great personal meaning to me, I can scarcely imagine how transcendent sharing a mutual favorite would be.

Saturday I went tromping through a corn maze for Shel's birthday, which was so fun (even though it was cold). I really love hanging out with Shel ♥ we so need to hang out more often! Later, Ash and I hung out with eviltwin )

Later (after we'd sobered up a bit), Ash and I sat in zir room and talked a bit and something profound happened )

Sunday Ash & Ben & I went to the Chastain Arts Festival (which had some truly incredible art), and then went to dinner with Nicole (where the food was yummy and Ash & Ben argued pretty fiercely about the evils/benefits of facebook), and then Ash went home and Ben & I had coffee and talked about various fascinating things. In particular we talked about the elements of 'good' poetry -- we almost agreed but not quite, as (if I understand zir correctly) ze feels that the more meaning a poem conveys and the more people it reaches, the better it is. I don't think that increases a poem's worth because to me, a poem's worth depends solely on the effort put into crafting it and how well it says what the poet meant to express (thus can only be rated meaningfully by its creator). I said that I'd read a poem in high school that struck me as quite ridiculously meaningless but created such a vivid picture in my mind, even to this day, and I feel like that makes it a successful poem (which is mere guesswork on my part -- it seems to me that the point was to create a picture in the reader's mind). I started to describe it and Ben quoted it to me because ze had been thinking of the same poem! This: by William Carlos Williams ) Then we watched "It Might Get Loud," a documentary about playing the electric guitar (focused on Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White) in which the artists spoke about the heart of creation and mentioned a lot of the very same things we'd been talking about. That was quite fun ;-)
sounds: Other Lives - Epic | Powered by Last.fm
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belenen: (artistic)
music sharing & concert-going w Ben / spiritual experience w Ash / talking art & poetry w Ben
This week has been crazily eventful. Last Wednesday Ben came over and we shared music -- ze introduced me to some of zir favorite groups (complete with pauses for explanation, which I LOVED because for me it adds so much to hear in a person's own words what is important) and then we listened to three Massive Attack albums while kissing and cuddling ♥ Thursday I was emotionally exhausted in a way I haven't been since the first time Aurilion came to visit, but fortunately I knew what was causing it so I felt oddly cheery about feeling crappy.

Friday I impulsively decided to go to a Hope Sandoval & The Warm Inventions concert with Ben, which was rather out of character for me because I prefer to get to know a band before seeing them live -- it really adds a lot for me to know the lyrics (and on first listen I can't 'hear' the lyrics because I'm too distracted by the overall sound). Ohhh, that was SO the right choice. I think I would have enjoyed it if I'd gone alone, but it wouldn't have been worth the cost and the drive. However, experiencing it with Ben was the most incredible musical experience I've ever had (except maybe for The Benjamin Gate's last concert) -- I cannot express the sense of living the music that we shared. I mean, I don't know how ze experienced it (except that afterward ze said ze felt drugged) but I felt like we merged with each other and the music and just breathed it, became extensions of it. I have stepped into music like that before, but doing it WITH someone is exponentially more intense, more beautiful. And if it was that incredible with music that didn't have great personal meaning to me, I can scarcely imagine how transcendent sharing a mutual favorite would be.

Saturday I went tromping through a corn maze for Shel's birthday, which was so fun (even though it was cold). I really love hanging out with Shel ♥ we so need to hang out more often! Later, Ash and I hung out with eviltwin )

Later (after we'd sobered up a bit), Ash and I sat in zir room and talked a bit and something profound happened )

Sunday Ash & Ben & I went to the Chastain Arts Festival (which had some truly incredible art), and then went to dinner with Nicole (where the food was yummy and Ash & Ben argued pretty fiercely about the evils/benefits of facebook), and then Ash went home and Ben & I had coffee and talked about various fascinating things. In particular we talked about the elements of 'good' poetry -- we almost agreed but not quite, as (if I understand zir correctly) ze feels that the more meaning a poem conveys and the more people it reaches, the better it is. I don't think that increases a poem's worth because to me, a poem's worth depends solely on the effort put into crafting it and how well it says what the poet meant to express (thus can only be rated meaningfully by its creator). I said that I'd read a poem in high school that struck me as quite ridiculously meaningless but created such a vivid picture in my mind, even to this day, and I feel like that makes it a successful poem (which is mere guesswork on my part -- it seems to me that the point was to create a picture in the reader's mind). I started to describe it and Ben quoted it to me because ze had been thinking of the same poem! This: by William Carlos Williams ) Then we watched "It Might Get Loud," a documentary about playing the electric guitar (focused on Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White) in which the artists spoke about the heart of creation and mentioned a lot of the very same things we'd been talking about. That was quite fun ;-)
sounds: Other Lives - Epic | Powered by Last.fm
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