29 Jun 2010, 3:15pm

Small Press and Small Pressing Things

I’ve rarely let a week pass between posts. Time seems exceptionally fast and full. Yet there’s no accounting for days.

2 days until Canada Day. 3 weeks until Saskatchewan. [Not that either of those futures are filling up the present or past. Just saying.]

Been playing catch up with email, news and rest. Got my lit CV finally updated. Fitting in more time to press onward afap, and decompress and toddle around where birds and trees play. Being slower to get anything done I suppose but still part of the creative brain recovers and wants to do all kinds of new experiments with food. [Perhaps my English will never recover from Spanish and Mandarin and poetry from where that pronoun drop that transfers.]

Let’s see. Where were we? Small press fair…

letterpress blocks
I like the Honey Bunch one

Some saw via Flickr, FB, Q&Q, or pesbo, the small press fair photos. There were pics of people and a couple shots of the reading.

Both were well-attended with a good vibe in the room. Some familiar faces, some new ones. Some quickie buffet nosh conversations and some in depth ones. I had fun signing the books with a drawing and a thanks to each person. At least a couple dozen of the chapbook sold.

some of the take homes
Some of the take home goodies from the fair.

Quote: “You’ve got to watch your mind all the time or you’ll awaken and find a
strange picture on your press.”- Lord Buckley at at QB

Sneak Peak

Can’t say the day wasn’t earthshaking in some sense. Anyone between Ohio and the coast, or Montreal to Toronto knows that we were a few miles from the epicenter of an earthquake. 12 miles underground it was big enough to rattle things and cause minor damage in 15 seconds or so.

over my dead corpus
And I got my hands on my new chapbook. You can’t tell in the picture, but the cover of “over my dead corpus” is shiny metallic silver. Yay for book bling!

There are 50 copies made. It is to be launched at the pre-small press fair reading at 7 pm June 25 at the Carleton Tavern and will be for sale there, and at the Angel House table at the Ottawa Small Press Fair on the afternoon of Saturday, June 26. More info here.

Quote: “Trust no friend without faults, and love a woman, but no angel.” ~ Doris Lessing

21 Jun 2010, 12:14am

Seen in the Market

stakes up.
Onion goggles at Domus.

onion: 1
humanity: 1
the next move: onion

Domus also has the squeeze-tube thingee at the cash register. Those can be hard to find.

anthropomorphic but something wrong
Ok, so it’s anthropomorphic but is it not implicitly calling the customer a cow and is it not also selling ice cream with deathly ill livestock? How thought out *was* this campaign? Is it working for them?

Lunch was pretty. I like the small joys of color and scent in the world. Like the uncapturable movement of lights reflecting on night water, the smell of storm coming and rain setting dust. Or the small movement in my peripheral vision and realizing the bird I heard was a bluebird. I’d never seen one. It lasted a few seconds. Somehow life is at its most worthwhile in these bits.

plucked ground-fresh peas
no root, no blossom
but still the leaf and the reach

Seems the spirit of this bit of a poem about a balloon recently run across…

O loose bloom
        With no root
               No seed.
~ A.E. Stallings at a Poetry Foundation poem

And poetry-matters continue at my poetry blog pesbo.

Hit Posts: People googling in most often are looking for
The Two Pots Story (2005)
Habitat 67 (2005),
30 Microskills of Listening (2006)
On Meditation, Struggle to Quiet Mind (2006)
Ottawa Valley Twang (2007)
Teresa Sapey: Architect (2008)

Longitudinal Shifts: Ruminating

In the back of my head, there’s a rush and intention and waiting for something.

I’m preoccupied with words, but the most enjoyable moments often aren’t in or about the words. This feels like a paradox. Are words acting as the straight man foil for the comedy that is the main act in life? Or it’s a cooperation? I need both. I seem most upbeat while in motion physically, outdoors, so long as I’m warm, and with people. So then why is it so hard to drag myself out to that situation?

Part of the problem is being adaptable and pleased. Wherever I am I like being there and don’t want to move. I drag my heels until I’m in the next situation and then don’t want to leave it either.

For years it felt like my feet were nailed to the floor. Now only my reluctant heels drag. That’s one less stigmata source to worry about but that elusive flow is being elusive again.

I look back on what I’ve said here over the years. It’s funny, my omissions of words.

I recently realized that when I quit my job from burnout 4 years ago, after a dozen years working in ESL, I never mentioned here ending my term nor career.

I stand by my policy of never blogged about clients while I worked, for their privacy, but my blackout seems larger than need be. I muted a lot. Beyond need for privacy or tact. What informs my choice of blackout zones?

Did I mention here when hubby was laid off and started a new business?

Certainly, privacy is important. Not everything should be made made public. It adds an observer distortion. I like to work things out on my own terms at my own speed and bringing someone into the loop can interfere with natural development but there are trade-offs. A few people presumed I was an architect since I made so much mention of that. I tend to scramble signal for my own privacy but that can add some distortions.

My dad’s death really hit me in April, but all normal here. I didn’t mention to anyone except hubby unavoidably. And by choice, which was something of a breathe thru break thru.

The anniversary of dad’s death will be in a month. I’ll likely not mention that until the other side of historical calm. I’m sure there’s some logic to my logic but I’ll blurt more details to some random stranger as involuntary confessional priest than in my own journal. Of course, online is for forever-like and strangers are only likely to pop up again, say, as job interviewer.

Talking with some random stranger he said he worked in california and while high on the job thought randomly moving paper files into other folders would be hilarious. He was caught, fired, changed job-types and years later in another country went to an interview and looked in the eye of his former California boss.

You never know what will come to bite one in the butt. You can avoid being bitten or presume you’ll deal and it won’t go septic and do what you must.

At the same, I realize that by writing publicly as much as I do, it’s working. I write myself away from mental habits of harsh scrutiny, redirect myself from depressive spirals, retrain my brain and chemistry to not be evil to myself.

I do chip away at my own habit of distancing myself from myself, creating areas of my brain that are under such high security clearance that even I am not qualified to see them. I’ve spent the last decade declassifying files of memory. 40-Word Years Project has been part of that process, guided by the principle of not dwelling and obsessing but moving along and the principle of Socrates, “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

Have I ever not been examining? Probably not, but the spotlight was spun outwards, intensely dissecting out there, then inwards with judgement and condemnation during analysis, which furthered the clamming up.

There’s a Chinese proverb, “everyone pushes a falling fence.” How much of a contributor have I been to the feedback cycles of being dismissed and jabbed at verbally and not consulted and when consulted, not heard because all my body language and tone of voice said, please don’t listen to me? I started playing with variables of that in earnest in ’98. Fun was singled out as key and scheduled in. :p

Thru the tools of some aspects of buddhism over the last 6 years or so, I could disconnect the train before trainwreck of apologizing for existing. That’s been a particularly sticky habit. A decade ago my sentences and postures were in-filled with sorrysorrysorry. (Still happens when I’m disoriented or tired.) But now, even compared to a year ago, I’m able to jump in unself-consciously and state my position or make one up on the fly and engage with people I know or don’t and let the outcomes fall where they may.

I don’t feel myself my brother’s keeper in the same way and don’t presume that I will only have deleterious effects on others while others can have only positive effects, example or lessons for me. In the humbleness competition of 20-years ago of Christianity, that trait was positively valued but now the preface of self-reproach just wastes time that could be spent productively. (Of course however diverse ways people apply an ideology is not the responsibility of the ideology.) But this habit of self-deprecation is clear as being ego-based, and a request to be propped up and some sort of game to need to rebuff praise. So much wasted energy. We don’t have to be dogs all lowering our tails and gaze to an alpha, or least not throwing so much energy into it. Otherwise it is living wisting after a delete or undo key instead of living what is. Not continuous recoil and pursuit. Adapting, engaging, being curious, affected but onwards. No ultimate upwards nor downwards is ensured.

I can see distance travelled. Luna Allison pointed out a video on positivity from Cognitive Media called Smile or Die which mentioned how mandatory positivity informed economic crash and is a form of cruelty. I’ve held my pendulum back from swinging. Or held back the bubble.

The bubble in the level has to float. Somehow, unconsciously, as my behavior seems to tell, I’ve worked under the assumption that the bubble can slip out of the level and I’ll slip the noose of humanity and become subhuman. I make allowances for others that I don’t give myself. Am kinder and more compassionate to others than myself. I need to step back more and be more circumspect and see myself in context more.

Yeah, them’s some of the thoughts of this morning.

And the quote is something I find interesting in itself as a concept, interesting lens for understanding the mental trade-offs Avison may have made to balance faith and intellectual rigor, but I still lean towards the energy expenditure of creating systems, exploring competing systems.

Quote: “I must embrace a system or be enslaved by the struggle to create one” ~ Amanda Jernigan on Margaret Avison on a 17-page feature in Arc, Summer 2010

Quiet Life

stink bug
You can see the tip of wings at the end of the stink bug.

stinkbug observed
They watch each other.

It’s tricky, this communication format. The more you say, the less is heard. But some periods contain weeks worth of posts but a deluge would go unread/unseen. How to sift, sort?

Turtle to the rescue! [via Things I Think Are Kinda Cool]

hay elevators
The hay elevators bedded down in a cloud of sweet flowers. It’s what my dad called wild clover but googling that yields red clover.

attic jugs
Rooting thru the attic, it’s hard to tell what’s useful or not.

doghouse in flowers
The gate is met with a growing bouquet.

Quote of the Day: “True silence is the rest of the mind; it is to the spirit what sleep is
to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” ~ William Penn

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