Miscellany

  • Be professional. Wear pants.
  • No, you cannot sell cookies at the conference.
  • Don’t talk too fast; it prevents the fishy and/or bewildered looks from registering.
  • A silent glare isn’t actually a good sign, but in certain circumstances consider it an honor.
  • Communicate with your coworkers and supervisors sooner rather than later. Especially if you think someone’s going to complain.
  • In this case, it was while getting out of the driveway.
  • Also, read your bloody notes ahead of time.
  • One missed phone call is chance. Twice is coincidence. Four straight to voicemail means they’re definitely running mad.
  • When conversation lags, “What the hell is wrong with people?” is always a good one.

Poetry Corner – The Rider at the Gate

A windy night was blowing on Rome,
The cressets guttered on Caesar's home,
The fish-boats, moored at the bridge, were breaking
The rush of the river to yellow foam.

The hinges whined to the shutters shaking,
When clip-clop-clep came a horse-hoof raking
The stones of the road at Caesar's gate;
The spear-butts jarred at the guard's awaking.

'Who goes there?' said the guard at the gate.
'What is the news, that you ride so late?'
'News most pressing, that must be spoken
To Caesar alone, and that cannot wait.'

'The Caesar sleeps; you must show a token
That the news suffice that he be awoken.
What is the news, and whence do you come?
For no light cause may his sleep be broken.'

'Out of the dark of the sands I come,
From the dark of death, with news for Rome.
A word so fell that it must be uttered
Though it strike the soul of the Caesar dumb.'

Caesar turned in his bed and muttered,
With a struggle for breath the lamp-flame guttered;
Calpurnia heard her husband moan:
'The house is falling,
The beaten men come into their own.'

'Speak your word,' said the guard at the gate;
'Yes, but bear it to Caesar straight,
Say, "Your murderers' knives are honing,
Your killers' gang is lying in wait."

'Out of the wind that is blowing and moaning,
Through the city palace and the country loaning,
I cry, "For the world's sake, Caesar, beware,
And take this warning as my atoning.

'"Beware of the Court, of the palace stair,
Of the downcast friend who speaks so fair,
Keep from the Senate, for Death is going
on many men's feet to meet you there."

'I, who am dead, have ways of knowing
Of the crop of death that the quick are sowing.
I, who was Pompey, cry it aloud
From the dark of death, from the wind blowing.

'I, who was Pompey, once was proud,
Now I lie in the sand without a shroud;
I cry to Caesar out of my pain,
"Caesar beware, your death is vowed."'

The light grew grey on the window-pane,
The windcocks swung in a burst of rain,
The window of Caesar flung unshuttered,
The horse-hoofs died into wind again.

Caesar turned in his bed and muttered,
With a struggle for breath the lamp-flame guttered;
Calpurnia heard her husband moan:
'The house is falling,
The beaten men come into their own.'

- John Masefield

Small town libraries

Are pretty awesome, even if sometimes they operate by odd rules. Turns out, my library card for Town A Library is not accepted in Town B Library, twenty miles away in the same state and county. However, my card for County XZ library–one hundred and fifty miles distant as the car drives–is.

(“Skaith?”
“Yeah.”
“Riders?”
“Yeah.”
Of?”
“Yup.”
“Huh. There you are.”)

Or would be, if I’d gotten it renewed before, y’know, moving three hours away.

On the other hand, since I’ve just gotten my brand-new Kindle fired up and loaded, it’s probably for the best. Even though I’ve wanted to read Tarzan Alive since I was eleven years old.

On the gripping hand, paperbacks were 0.25$.

  • Son of the White Wolf – Robert E Howard
  • Solomon Kane: The Hills of the Dead
  • The Moon of Skulls

And, changing genres (to donate to a homeschool group I know of, which will probably thank me profusely and then ignore them because kids these days):

  • Anne of Green Gables – Lucy Maud Montgomery
  • Anne of the Island
  • Anne of Avonlea (helpfully degunked by the nice lady. Well, 90% degunked)
  • Anne of Windy Poplars

alpha

It’s stupid to use Earth terms for non-Earth things, but whatever the word for “badass male leader and defender of his tribe” is, it described Big Bruno. He didn’t know fear, he laughed at pain, and he barely understood what caution was, on a bad day. He was twelve feet from nose to tail, toothed, clawed, armored, scarred, muscled, thick-hided, thick-skulled.

I’d’ve waited until he got bored and went away. Big Bruno knew that—knew me.

The man bleeding beside me couldn’t afford to wait.

Big Bruno knew that, too. He came down, rocked back onto the rearward four: crouching.

Poetry Corner – He Bids His Beloved be at Peace

I HEAR the Shadowy Horses, their long manes a-shake,	 
Their hoofs heavy with tumult, their eyes glimmering white;	 
The North unfolds above them clinging, creeping night,	 
The East her hidden joy before the morning break,	 
The West weeps in pale dew and sighs passing away,
The South is pouring down roses of crimson fire:	 
O vanity of Sleep, Hope, Dream, endless Desire,	 
The Horses of Disaster plunge in the heavy clay:	 
Beloved, let your eyes half close, and your heart beat	 
Over my heart, and your hair fall over my breast,
Drowning love’s lonely hour in deep twilight of rest,	 
And hiding their tossing manes and their tumultuous feet.


- William Butler Yeats