…because it’s your civic duty
…because those taxes you complain about pay for public schools
…because yeah, you do actually directly elect the majority of candidates
…because you have a voice
…because you have a chance to empower yourself
…because the news makes you feel things you want to avoid
…or because you want to look your fear in the eyes
…because democracy is rule by the people, like, you there
…because you get a sticker
…because you don’t want to be exploited
…because you don’t want to get fucked over
…because you want to be a part of history
…because you can
…because we all deserve basic rights
…because human dignity exists, even if it’s not always apparent
…because you enjoy your freedoms
…or because you want the freedoms promised to you
…because riots suck but protesting is kind of cool
…because you don’t want to die indebted
…because you want to know you are drinking clean water
…because you want to know you have adequate health care
…because you don’t want your neighbor to go hungry
…because your grandmother asked you to
…because you kind of like winning
…because the faster you vote the quicker the pundits will be quiet
…because there are only so many SNL skits that you can tolerate before you turn off the television
…because you want to go back to a time when “the Orange One” denoted a ginger wizard and not a corrupt raccoon
…because you couldn’t get a student visa to Canada fast enough
sometimes I genuflect before entering the pew
sometimes I lie in the pew and let my mind wander
always, I wonder how old the creaky pews must be
sometimes I can get through a decade
sometimes I pray the whole rosary
sometimes Father B. walks in with his scraggly service dog and we talk about life
many times I think of how I am lucky
sometimes I think about funerals
lately I look at the architecture and think about that art history midterm coming up
mostly I just think “what a beautiful chapel”
we’re always gonna miss you
Awareness of sexual violence in the long shadows of the Orlando Massacre and the Stanford Rape Case is essential. Read on to learn of small things being done & for helpful resources that can be utilized to prevent sexual violence in the future.
Each year, volunteers from every department of our school spend innumerable hours to put up the shirts seen above on clotheslines, spread throughout our campus.
Why do we do this?
If you’ll look very closely, each shirt has a message, written or illustrated. Each shirt is a memorial for a particular survivor of sexual violence.
Each color represents a different type of violence, and as you’ll see, there is a wide spectrum of colors.
I go to a women’s college, and many of the shirts seen here are from my school. There are also shirts from inmates at nearby women’s prisons; the term project for two social studies classes is to visit the prisons to provide supplies for shirt-making for the inmates.
The Clothesline Project has been a tradition at my school for about a decade, though it’s been going on nationally and internationally for much longer.
– – –
Here’s to a safer school year.
Here’s why it’s a big deal…
Ireland is known for its literature, and Ireland is known for its history of persecution via Norman & English invaders. Therefore, when Ireland’s literature is persecuted abroad or at home, its literature becomes iconic, a voice for the oppressed.
Addendum, as to why I celebrate: I’m Irish, but I am also a huge supporter of reading banned books. It’s important not to let someone else’s idea of “right” and “wrong” taint yours, and even if the books were banned with the “best” intentions, I believe we have every right to read them. (Also, the libraries would be depleted of books very quickly should every contested novel be ousted.)
Here’s a quick history lesson…
16 June 1904 is celebrated as the 24 hour period in which Irish novelist James Joyce turned in the magnificent, bawdy and extremely dense novel Ulysses.
Ulysses has been both heralded by great authors and decried by noted reviewers alike, and was banned in the United States from 1922 until 1934 (the U.S. Espionage Act wreaked havoc on free speech during and after the First World War.)
Not to say there weren’t copies of the “obscene book” smuggled into the U.S.
Addendum: In the 2011 historical novel The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt (set in 1920’s New England & France), two young women go to Paris to have Joyce sign their copy of the novel; an interesting fact is the author of Scrapbook is the goddaughter of Sylvia Beach, Joyce’s publisher, in real life
Here are synopses…
“Joyce’s Ulysses is a novel of eighteen “episodes,” all set in Dublin, Ireland, between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 am, June 16-17, 1904. The three main characters are a young school teacher and aspiring writer named Stephen Dedalus (the main character of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man), a middle-aged Jewish advertising salesman named Leopold Bloom, and Leopold’s wife, Molly Bloom. During the composition of Ulysses Joyce compiled a working outline or “schema” indicating the title of each episode (each title taken from some character or incident in Homer’s Odyssey), the approximate time and place of its setting, and, for most of the episodes, the bodily organ, the “art,” the color, the symbol, and the “technic” (or technique) significant to each episode, as well as some of the correspondences between characters in Ulysses and in Homer’sOdyssey. In the schema Joyce also divided the book into three main sections, the “Telemachia”–episodes 1-3–the “Odyssey”–episodes 4-15–and the “Nostos”–episodes 16-18. In the brief summary that follows, each entry begins with the title Joyce gave the episode in the schema (these titles do not appear in Ulysses), followed by the time; scene; bodily organ; art; color; symbol; and technic. When Joyce did not include some category for an episode a — is used.”
Longer Synopsis (Extension of Quote Above)
Longest Synopsis (That One is Likely to Read)
…And here’s how far I’ve come as of today:
IT’S A WORK IN PROGRESS!
Mothers are oceans;
they have unfathomable depths.
My mother lost her mother
too long ago for me to know anything
of her but her children & husband’s recollections;
I know little of my grandmother,
save from photo albums in our basement.
My mother feels her absence deeply, I suspect.
Moms are fickle things;
we only know them as they are now,
not who they were when they were younger,
if we were lucky enough to know them at all.
Looking through a meticulous scrapbook of my her childhood,
I learned more about my mother as a woman,
and not as “Mom”.
The more I see,
the harder she is to read.
This year I’m away at school,
and I’ve taken up the habit to ask her,
“how is Noreen?”
“how are you, Mom?”
while on the phone.
It’s a not slight,
nor so much an
“oh, I’m an adult now, so I’ll call you by your first name”
as it is that I am asking her how she is
as a person
separate from her mothering identity.
I’m named after my grandmother.
As often as I am proud,
“I was the grandchild named in her honor”
I am afraid, too.
The name is heavy.
There is a weight to this bequeathed crown,
the etymology matters less than
her appellation is my inheritance.
My mother’s patience and imagination
balanced truly remarkably
with her diligence and industriousness.
I will never understand how she has accomplished everything she has;
and has kept her head, too.
I would like to thank you for your kindness,
your hair-stroking (and coloring),
and for that time we sat in the great big refrigerator box in the front yard,
eating something out of the carton.
Thank you for your faith in me,
thank you for your trust,
and your love.
I love you, too.
You are wonderful,
and will always be wonderful,
and a wonder,
in my book.
I will never reach your sea-floor
and uncovered all your opal hopes and quiet desires,
but in my book,
you’re always a favorable character,
tough, and beautiful,
vulnerable and valiant.
I want to watch Brave with you, again.
I think you are more like Merida,
and I’m Elinor.
Lots & lots & garden plots
♥ love ♥
photographic edits 9 June 2016
This is the fickle month.
is like the quick fox in all the folktales,
the grouch in the neighborhood IRL,
and songs with gray hues
on the Web.
April is almost awful, but not quite.
from March to May.
Cruel and pretty—
April is as much the month
of puffy-flowered gardens as it is
the cold jewels on the roses.
It hasn’t rained much here,
but every plant is blooming.
This has been an ugly week,
but it’s already Wednesday,
and so we know
we can soldier forward.
edited (formatting): 26 May 2017