Rejoin (updated with details)   Leave a comment

rejoin-1

All the poets I’ve ever read
say lovers, old or new, must meet
in fields of green grass or new-mown hay
places blowing with wildflowers
and warm with sunshine

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But you don’t find places like that everywhere and when
You can’t meet your lover in a field of poppies and daisies
when you’re in Michigan in the winter
Two may plight their troth ‘neath an arch of roses
but never in December northlands

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Still, the heart recks not the time nor place
for a lover’s reunion
The skies may be grey as a ghost’s eyes,
the wind howling from the heights,
flurries blowing in the breeze
instead of peony blossoms —
but when he calls,
wherever he is,
whenever he is,
you will come

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You need not even touch him;
just see him
and naught else matters to you
The freezing blast becomes
balmy breezes of May
The seabirds’ croaks transmuted
to the song of bluebirds
And a world of snow and brown grasses
refashions itself in your heart’s eye
to the greenest of gardens
all for the sake of one person

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You rush to meet him —
or he comes to you
for it doesn’t really matter —
and you wouldn’t trade where you are
for the warmest resort
in Spain or Italy
All you want is the touch of his hand
the caress of his arms
the brush of his warm lips against yours —
and the promise of later
when even this shall pale
before bright moments in the dark
and the quiet
and the solitude of two

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What do time or place mean
to the union of hearts?
To those in love and separated
a second apart is an eternity
and Eden a barren desert
To those rejoined
a day is too little
and the emptiest desert a paradise

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When you find the one who’s the Other You
cling to the time together
glory in the places you can share your lives
and glorify God in gratitude
for the happiness showered on you both

— Harper Ganesvoort, 2016

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The details:

  • Body: Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
  • Skin: Glam Affair Cleo (America – Clean B)
  • Eyes: La Boheme Antimatter Eyes (Set 2: 6)
  • Hair: D!va Stephanie
  • Attachments: Slink Avatar Enhancement hands and feet
  • Top: Swet Tea cowl neck sweater (Collection 2, applier); SLC Mesh Warm Woolen Poncho Cape (purple)
  • Pants: Larry Jeans Jeans 001 (applier)
  • Boots: Fonde Metal Thigh Boots (24k Gold)
  • Accessories: EarthStones Quetzalli necklace and earrings; Kunglers Nin rings (right hand) and Gaby rings (left hand); Zaara pashmina shawl (bottle green)
  • Makeup: LIVIA Zalia Eyeshadow (Blue); *BOOM* Liquid Glaze (vintage); {MUA} Jewels Lipstick (Hepcat)

Photographed in Furillen

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Tutorial: Creating a Crowd — Using Layers and Selections in Second Life Photos   1 comment

If you use image editing software for your Second Life photographic work, such as GIMP, Paint Shop Pro or PhotoShop, you’ve probably encountered references like “masks” and “selections” in the documentation at some point.  However, have you ever used them before?  I’ll admit, I’ve been slow in learning all the capabilities of my image software, when I could probably produce more luxurious photos without spending a fortune on luxurious costumes.  But, for a project I’m working on now, I had an idea for a photo that I needed help on.  I wanted to produce a scene with more than two people in it.  I wanted a man in the shot — but I didn’t want Conan for this particular photo, as I was going to “meet” him when I got off the ferry boat.  What do I do?

It was time to throw out contacts, and also to try new techniques.  Jem Sternhall was willing to help, of course; but I don’t know that many men in SL.  The solution:  use Jemmy twice!

And here’s how you do it, for newbies and those who haven’t tried something like this yet:

Read the rest of this entry »

9 Down and 1 to Go   2 comments

9th-anniversary

Nine years.

That’s not a record, and it probably never will be.  Hamlet Au’s been writing New World Notes for years longer, I’m sure.  But it’s still something of an achievement, and definitely one for me.  My old RL poliblog, which I wrote during the second GWB administration, went only four years, and I ended it with Barack Obama’s inauguration, and I was terribly sputtery by the end — because I’d started writing this blog.  This one has been written continuously, if irregularly, since before Obama was elected the first time!

WordPress nicely breaks down the total number of articles to indicate how many I wrote — by far the lion’s share, of course, since I lured (or is that lulled?) Jem and Conan into writing with me only a year or so ago.  But in nine years, I’ve done 1,266 pieces, counting this one.  That works out to a little under 12 articles a month, or just under three articles a week.  The quality I leave to your judgment, as always; but I will claim determination at generating all those words, if nothing else.  How many words?  Well, if you assume 500 words to an average article, that would be over 600 thousand words in nine years!  It won’t be that many, I’m sure; many have been shorter, especially the pure poetry or lyrics pieces.

In the end, it’s all up to you, my readers, how well I’ve done in all that time.  As I ever wish, I hope I’ve entertained you, informed you where it was a news piece, given you something to think about once in a while, and introduced you to good art, fashion and photography across all of that time.  Many of you have been generous with your praise, for which I thank you most gratefully.  I hope I continue to justify your following me.

I’m looking forward to next November 20, I promise you.  When that one comes along, look for a new header to celebrate our tenth anniversary!  In the meantime, I haven’t given up on the plans I’ve made for a radical change or two, and you should watch following Christmas for our yearly tradition, as Oscar voting season kicks off and the Oscar Fashion Photo Contest opens up.  (That will be the eighth edition when that opens, and there’s another thing that just may be a record; has any other photo contest run so continuously in Second Life, or given away so much money?  L$166,500 over seven years, and there should be at least another L$40,000 come next February.  Time to start thinking about finding a good gown….)

As always, especially in these parlous RL times, peace be with you, and I hope you’ll stay with me for another year.

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Edges of Autumn   Leave a comment

edges-of-autumn-wallpaper

Every year we have been
witness to it: how the
world descends

into a rich mash, in order that
it may resume.
And therefore
who would cry out

to the petals on the ground
to stay,
knowing as we must,
how the vivacity of what was is married

to the vitality of what will be?
I don’t say
it’s easy, but
what else will do

if the love one claims to have for the world
be true?

edges-of-autumn-1

So let us go on, cheerfully enough,
this and every crisping day,

though the sun be swinging east,
and the ponds be cold and black,
and the sweets of the year be doomed.

Lines written in the days of growing darkness, by Mary Oliver

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The details:

  • Body: Maitreya Mesh Body – Lara V3.5
  • Skin: Glam Affair Cleo (America – Clean B)
  • Eyes: Poetic Colors Opal (Sun Wave)
  • Hair: D!va Hair Gabriella
  • Attachments: SLink Avatar Enhancement Hands
  • Top: neve by coldLogic lively pull-over
  • Jeans and boots: PurpleMoon Penelope (available at current round of On9)
  • Jewelry: Maxi Gossamer Ariel Sun Pendant earrings and short necklace (available as separates on the Marketplace)
  • Makeup: SlackGirl Paola (02); {MUA} All the Ways eyeliner (Pack 2 – 4); Glamorize Innocent lipstick (09)

Photographed in Good Memories region

View the full-size photos (including a 1920×1080 wallpaper) in PNG in my Flickr album.

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For Our Veterans   Leave a comment

veterans-day

Harper put up an excellent pair of pieces for her Veterans Day writing this week, but I decided to do something of my own.  In Canada, we call this Remembrance Day, and it’s more specifically to honour the soldiers and sailors who have fallen, like America’s Memorial Day, since the day’s origin lies in the end of what was then called the Great War, now World War I.  The Flanders poppy in my lapel derives from the poppies that dotted the northern European landscape, thus the inspiration for Canadian army doctor John McCrae’s “In Flanders Fields.”

Je me souviens….

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From the Archive — In Memory of Broken Glass   Leave a comment

This would have been a good article to republish under any circumstances.  In light of recent events, though, it’s even more important that we remember this thing, and that we swear, solemnly and before all that we all hold holy in this world, that it will never happen again, to any people on this planet.

I’ve checked the Map, and Israel Island is still there.  Spare a moment, I beg ye, whoever ye may be and whatever be thy creed and faith, and visit this place, and pray for the souls of the dead, for the Righteous Gentiles, and for all who died as the result of a madman’s insanity.

“Rest quietly, for we will not repeat the evil….”

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Kristallnacht blog

While we’re remembering our veterans today, both alive and dead, it’s appropriate that we remember others as well, who died for no reason other than the desires of a madman. I will tell you right now that this isn’t a light article, a happy fashion piece or a visit to some beautiful vista, and I pull no punches in my subject or my choice of language. If you find this a hard thing, my sorrow for you, and you should move on to another blog for now. But an evil this great must be remembered; must be kept alive in the history of the world, so that we may see the signs and take steps to stop it before it grabs hold of us again.

Read more after the break.

Veterans Day and Election Day 2016   Leave a comment

veterans-day

Jem, Conan (who couldn’t be present) and I all salute our country, our veteran relations and ancestors, and our democratic process.

In part, Veterans Day and Election Day are close enough together this year that I decided to combine the two together into one post. This isn’t normally my practice, but the theme I’m going to talk about here links into both, as it’s a matter that links the two days together.  As I’ve done before, I’m writing for all three of us, and adding their signatures to this article with my friends’ review and permission, for which I thank them most gratefully.

We at Around the Grid all have a father or grandfather who served in the U. S. armed forces at some point — as well, doubtless, as any number of ancestors we have never known — and we were raised “traditionally” enough to have a reasonably strong sense of patriotism, along with belief in our country and its inherent good and decency.  Our ancestors fought on behalf of the United States in any number of wars, going back to the Revolutionary War, because they believed in those facts.  They desired the right of a man — and now of a person — to be free, to determine their own destiny with the least imposition of rule by the government over them, and only by their own consent when the government did institute a law of some kind.  Jem and Conan haven’t mentioned any specifics about their fathers; but I can tell you that my own, as I think I’ve mentioned in the past, fought and bled for those ideals in France in World War II.  (This is the reason I wear the purple duster I have on above, for Dad’s Purple Heart; and the purple strip in Jemmy’s dress is suggestive.)  Many more since have fought, or simply served and stood ready to defend this country against its perceived enemies.  Again, as this blog tries to do every year, we salute those men and women — not always understood, never enough appreciated, often wounded in spirit as well as body, but willing to lay their lives down if called upon for the greater good.

Please don’t stop here; more words, even more important, are past the turn of the page.

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