Thursday, October 26, 2023

Lessons from the Bride

The Bride of Frankenstein is one of six monsters featured in the 1998 pinball machine Monster Bash by Williams. The objective of the game is to form a band with classic Universal monsters. Every monster has their own game mode which you have to start to have them added as a band member, the Bride is the singer in the band.

Happy Poetry Friday! After looking around for a "Bride of Frankenstein" poem, I decided I'd better write one myself. Such an interesting tale she has -- in the original book, she is never finished. The doctor is afraid that his desire to appease the monster may lead "a race of devils."

However, she IS brought to life in the 1935 movie, and in many movies, TV shows, and cartoons thereafter. Dr. Frankenstein worried about her spawning generations of "monsters," but she did it anyway.

Lessons from the Bride
by Tabatha Yeatts

Even if you're feeling a little
rough around the edges,
a bit unrefined,
you can rise from the Surgical Table of Life,

reject your past,
scream at your suitors,
and escape your beginnings.

Even if they nearly pulled the plug on you
for fear of the misfits you might create,

you can deliver
as many new selves
as you can envision.

No castle can hold you,
you are your own thunderstorm.


I was looking up the thunderstorm/lightning/electricity element of the story and I found this poster: "More fearful than the monster himself!" they say.

The Apples in My Orchard has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Carol!

Memento Mori

In the world of the living, one must live.
~Silvia Moreno-Garcia

For the last spooky Art Thursday, memento mori-- reminders that life is short, and death comes for everyone, even fancy people. (I think of Shelley's "Ozymandias" as a poetic memento mori.)

Epitaph for Johann Nepomuk Joseph Freiherr von Zech auf Neuhofen (1732-1757)
created by Ignaz G√ľnther
photo by Steve Collis

Small Death, Austria, 1500s
attributed to Hans Leinberger

Memento mori, c. 1894
by Ernst Platz

Death Comes to the Banquet Table - Memento Mori
Giovanni Martinelli

Memento Mori on an early 16th century rosary, carved ivory; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

Photo of a Memento mori ring on display at Norwich Castle Museum
photo by Geni

Life and Death

Monday, October 23, 2023

Jazmine Sullivan

I feel that the music that I do is somewhat of a lost art and it's not as popular as dance or pop music and people are not as interested in it. But it's something that I believe in and I feel that it's needed, so that's why I do it and I will keep doing it until everybody hears it and gets it.
~Jazmine Sullivan

For Music Monday, Jazmine Sullivan. First, "Come To Your Senses" written by Jonathan Larson, performed by Jazmine Sullivan. Then we have a song from her Grammy-winning album Heaux Tales.

Thursday, October 19, 2023

Turning back to surprise

Samhain. All Hallows. All Hallow’s Eve. Hallow E’en. Halloween. The most magical night of the year.
~Mike Nichols

Poetry Friday greetings! I have had a good day -- Ariana's medical treatment was approved (the denial was overturned). It is criminal that our health depends on the whims of people whose primary concern is $, but that's all I'm going to say about that.

Elena and I had fun shopping for Halloween decorations. Our favorite item was a Bride of Frankenstein bust with glowing red eyes. (Photo next week.) Today's poems are a mix of spooky and supportive.

from Incantation
by George Parsons Lathrop


A Blessing on the Poets
by Annie Finch

Patient earth-diggers, impatient fire-makers,
Hungry word-takers and roving sound-lovers,
Sharers and savers, musers and achers,
You who are open to hide or uncover,
Time-keepers and –haters, wake-sleepers, sleep-wakers:
May language’s language, the silence that lies
Under each word, move you over and over,
Turning you, wondering, back to surprise.


Wee Words for Wee Ones has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Bridget! Happy Birthday!

P.S. Want to sign up for the Holiday Poem Swap? There's still time!

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Block printing

What he had loved most about carving was the SEEING part, which happened even before you began.
~Stephen King

For Art Thursday, we're thinking about block printing. I love watching people make them and it makes me want to try, although I wouldn't have the patience to create all the different color layers.

Interested in giving it a go? This is a good beginner's tutorial:

Monday, October 16, 2023

Glass Beams

Every great story seems to begin with a snake.
~Nicolas Cage

For Music Monday, Australian band Glass Beams:

Sunday, October 15, 2023

Refuse v. Decline

The most important problems we face are complex, and require sustained attention. But we don't speak in terms of nuance or complexity. Is that by accident? It's because our minds have been entrained to expect shorter and shorter bite-sized bits.
~Tristan Harris

I am a fan of nuance. Here's a good point from Doc Schmidt:

Thursday, October 12, 2023

Dip your pens

Words can be like X-rays if you use them properly – they’ll go through anything. You read and you’re pierced.
~Aldous Huxley

Another Poetry Friday! Whew, glad to meet around the old word corral for the poetry round-up.

If you'd like to join the Holiday Poem Swap, drop me a line! The basic premise is the same as in the past -- people sending each other poems and small gifts in early December. The one difference is that I am also going to let some people who do not have the wherewithal to participate but would still like to be a recipient sign up. Every swap session, there are always folks who have the best intentions but then life intervenes and they struggle to complete their swap. I figured this time I would see if there was anyone who guessed that might happen to them and then I'll see if I can find someone who wants to send an extra. (Update: I have gotten five offers to send extra swaps, and one request. Four more recipients are welcome to register.)


Today's poem:

For Ukraine
By Ryner Lai

You tread softly
As if the earth is made of snow.

Gesturing broadly to your guest:
“This is where our great memorial will be.”

You lower your gaze;
Your guest follows your lead.

The memory of war pierces you;
Your tears drop like blood.

Poetry is rising.

Our graves beneath you:
An inverted heaven.

A sliver of a sunflower
Unfolds to meet the sun.

Children of freedom:
Dip your pens
Deep into our souls;
We have made ink.


Reading to the Core has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Catherine!

Birge Harrison

Giant oak trees... have deep root systems that can extend two-and-one-half times their height. Such trees rarely are blown down regardless of how violent the storms may be.
~Joseph B. Wirthlin

For Art Thursday, a defiant old oak and others by Birge Harrison.

Old Oaks Defiance, Woodstock, Vermont
by Birge Harrison

Evening on the Seine
by Birge Harrison

Wagon in Fall Landscape
by Birge Harrison

A Puff of Steam
by Birge Harrison

Fifth Avenue at Twilight
by Birge Harrison

Sunburst at Sea
by Birge Harrison

Monday, October 9, 2023

Autumn Nocturne

Designers want me to dress like Spring, in billowing things. I don't feel like Spring. I feel like a warm red Autumn.
~Marilyn Monroe

For Music Monday, Lou Donaldson (who is about to celebrate his 97th birthday):

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Poison and Prudence

Poisons and medicine are oftentimes the same substance given with different intents.
~Peter Latham

Happy Poetry Friday! How is everybody doing? I am looking forward to visiting Ariana this weekend.

It being October, I am leaning towards spooky-ish topics. I heard about the Poison Book Project recently. Maybe you've heard about it already? Some green-hued books from the late 1800s have arsenic in the binding, so the Winterthur Museum is helping with identifying those books, keeping records, offering info about how to store them, etc. If you have one, don't lick your fingers as you turn the pages and then rub your eyes.

I looked up "poison poems" and found The Poison Tree by William Blake, which I shared already (2014!). A list of "anger" poems also popped up, including this cute one:

“Stop Me!”
by Amos Russel Wells (1862-1933)

Stop me, good people! Don’t you see

My temper is running away with me?

Help, Master Commonsense! Are you afraid?

Good Mistress Prudence, come to my aid!

Stop me, Conscience! Stop me, I pray!

My temper, my temper is running away!

Dear Brother Kindness, snatch after the reins!

Help, or my temper will dash out my brains!

Help, or I’ll get a terrible fall!

Help, Shame, Caution, Love, Wisdom, and all!


Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Matt!

P.S. Does my post title sound like a lost Jane Austen novel? Quick, someone write it!

Vampires by Munch

Vampires are handy characters, as they can do double duty as monster/villains and the classic, misunderstood romantic hero.
~Nancy A. Collins

Happy Art Thursday! The same painting, two years in a row, by Edvard Munch.

Vampire (1894)
Edvard Munch

Love and Pain (Vampire), 1895
Edvard Munch

Monday, October 2, 2023

Hold That Spirit

Cross your heart and hope to die
Look that monster in the eye
~Raye Zaragoza

For Music Monday, Raye Zaragoza: