Bloomsday // Baltimore Pride

festivities, summer


Hello, internet friends!

So, here’s the kicker: I’m really not so great about writing yearly posts for various holidays YET this will be the third June I’ve managed to honor(???) Bloomsday with a blip on the blogosphere and I still haven’t finished the book – actually, I haven’t revisited it since 2016… Yes, well, em, I haven’t heard the banshee so I’d like to think I’ll have time to finish it by next year’s Bloomsday.

While I can’t yet gush about finishing Ulysses, or visiting Dublin, or any other Joycean joys I CAN & WILL congratulate another Irish writer, Deirdre Sullivan, on writing the 28th Children’s Books Ireland Book of the Year: a feminist fairytale anthology, Tangleweed & Brine (and another huge congratulations to Welshwoman Karen Vaughan for the collection’s exquisite illustrations)!

I both loved and feared each tale in the collection, and absolutely, wholly, utterly recommend you find yourself a copy to read (support your local library!).

Speaking of libraries, the Enoch Pratt Free Library just nixed its late fees for overdue books! Just another reason for you to come around and visit Baltimore. And please do come by; this is really a wonderful city—it’s not just the doom and gloom you see on the news.

A particular gem of the City in the summer (apart from all the movie festivals) is Baltimore’s Pride celebration, the pinnacle of which, the parade, happened to be today…So we should all just be partying all weekend, honestly. (ALSO, let’s wish a happy first birthday to Lorde’s Melodrama today!)

I’d like to say the local LGBT+ community has a terrific presence in the city even after the rainbow beads and iridescence of the parade have been swept from Chuck St. Or, that’s my impression from attending book readings and talks and dance parties and ever-popular “Gay Movie Nights” with queer friends (HAVE YOU SEEN MOONLIGHT?!).

But I’d like to clarify that at these events I’m here to celebrate my friends: When I go to Pride celebrations and meet the SOs of some of my best friends, I’m at events that are not meant for me (a straight cisgender woman). It’s an honor and a privilege to have LGBT+ friends who feel they can confide in me, and I actively seek ways to help them feel safe and loved. This is devolving into a “wow, isn’t Carey great?” sort of thing, but what I’m so poorly trying to explain is that these wonderful people are so brave; to feel comfortable expressing yourself as you are, regardless of your sexuality, gender identity, or any other facet of your true self that doesn’t conform to the heteronormative narrative we’ve all been told is the only way to be—to have been told that you’re wrong by so many and oftentimes so violently, and to still celebrate yourself as you are is just — amazing.


Lots of love this Bloomsday!

oo Carey



(the day on which the events in Ulysses were set) SOURCE UNKNOWN 😦 





Here’s a secret dream of mine: there are few things I want more from this life than to have an entire holiday dedicated to a book I wrote, although, full disclosure, I’m no closer to finishing Ulysses than I was last year.

However, I did finish Dubliners and would 10/10 recommend!!

Bloomsday Events in D.C., USA

Bloomsday Events in Dublin, Ireland

Bloomsday Events in London, UK

Bloomsday Events in Montréal, Canada

Bloomsday Events in Philadelphia, USA



literally no further than last year so last year’s pic is just as accurate alas

“and yes, i said yes”



It’s Bloomsday!

     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.

Bloomsday celebrates the banned book, Ulysses, by Éire’s native son, James Joyce, ergo, it is a huge festival in Ireland and internationally, courtesy the diaspora.

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.)


this is my 1946 edition, courtesy a library book sale (and a Trinity knot necklace)

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


and here’s Dubliners (1971 ed.) chillin’ in the living room

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.”

(Courtesy Weldon Thornton and Morris Beja, Bucknell University)

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:



x. Carey


liber liber // forgive my declensions!


via Marina & the Diamonds’ “Oh no!” music video // 679 Recordings (c) 2010 // YouTube

Hello! Happy Monday!

Happy Leap Day!!!

Saturday morning I woke up and reviewed a

bunch of critiques for the lit mag.

Reading all the submissions,

I began to think:

I have a draft about books I kind of gave away,

and now miss.

…type type type…

These are they,


These are the books that have been freed from my library,

another reason why

I’d be a bad librarian.

(“No, just bring it back — whenever. Really.

Like, it’s yours now. Enjoy.”)



Nightlight: The Harvard Lampoon (genuinely missing since 2010—unlikely to get back now, but enjoyed it while I had it. This Ivied send-up to Twilight  is probably the only saving grace of the vampire trend of 2000’s. Nightlight spoke to my middle school soul.)

Picture of Dorian Gray: Oscar Wilde (missing since 2012—lent to aunt with great lipsticking abilities. This one is actually missing.)

Boy, Snow, Bird: Helen Oyeyemi (down the street since 2015—lent to a neighborhood friend, with the caveat, “I need it back by 2020”. No rush here.)

Half of a Yellow Sun: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (swapped October 2015—lent to roommate. She lent me Purple Hibiscus, neither of us has started, ergo, we’re solid.)

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald: Therese Anne Fowler (down the hall since November 2015—Lent to friend. No rush, she’s a slowpoke while reading— understandably, since she’s taking three sciences with labs right now.)

The Secret History: Donna Tartt (taking a Roman holiday 😉 since December 2015—lent to a Classics major presently on an archaeology tour of Europe. Humbly, I ask she not murder me.)

The Goldfinch: Donna Tartt (somwhere upstairs since January 2016, with a friend. It took me ten months to finish; I hope to get this back before 2017.)



Treasury of Poems (2013) (from my grandfather’s beach house)

Last Man in Hell (2015) (weirdest play ever)

Political Science Textbook from the Library (2016) (two days overdue!)



The Book Thief (2011-2014 — because my brother wouldn’t tell me where he stashed it. Thanks, Fuzz.)

We Were Liars (three weeks overdue — because it was at the house, and I am at school. YAAAY for library fines.)

A Bunch That I Can’t Think of, Borrowed on My Card, Which My Sister Refused to Return         (Bear’s toddlerhood — present day.)


I would definitely be a bad librarian.

(But if you get artificially-colored food on the pages,

that is another story.


x. Carey

P.S. it is unusually warm for february. it was in the upper seventies a week ago!

P.P.S. this is super tongue in cheek, as i’m sure you know. and as far as i know, neither the smiths or marina, or arthur beatrice, for that matter, wrote these (love)songs about books.

you never know though, with those british musicians…


punchy as always

the time traveler’s wife


FullSizeRender (14)

The Best Accessory?

Obviously, a book.

The Time Traveler’s Wife, is a novel by Audrey Niffenegger.

It was published in 2003.

As the title states, Clare Abshire is married to a time-traveler, Henry De Tamble.

Clare meets Henry when she is six, and he is in his forties.

They meet again when she is sixteen, and he is in his thirties.

They get married

when she is in her twenties and he is in his twenties.


but if you can

wrap your mind

around it,

it’s truly a story

of art,





and waiting…

I strongly recommend this book.

Signing off,


fight on


FullSizeRender (13)The Best Accessory?

Obviously, a book.

An inspirational take

on the usual “YCDI”,

Fight On also has perfect visuals,


a girl evolving from trees,

bokeh city lights, and

all matters of the soul.

It’s written by M. H. Clark and designed by Sarah Forster.

Key affirmations include,

“You are allowed to let go.”

and “Yes, there is pain. There is beauty too. Keep your heart open.”

and finally,

“Everything you know was once unknown.”

How’s that for a pep talk?



Anne Frank

Anne Frank Image Courtesy My Hero {Web Site}

Anne Frank Image Courtesy My Hero {Web Site}

“Oh, Rose Of May!” So quoth Hamlet in Shakespeare’s The Prince of Denmark. He was not referring to the beauteous flowers outside his springtime window . Rather, the martyrdom of his loved ones. And no greater child-martyr of the twentieth century than Anne Frank.

Anne Frank receives a diary for her last birthday as a free Jewish girl growing up in Amsterdam. She recounts her daily life in hiding with seven other people for two years while Nazis storm Holland. Her story is one of an inquisitive, self-possessed, and, yes, confused adolescent girl; one who may or may not love her friend-who’s-a-boy who’s living in the attic upstairs with her.

Confession: I say “tragic” entirely too often. I am a teen girl, and I have my own issues, but there are few tragedies greater than Anne’s: She was only sixteen when she died. She was on her way to becoming a journalist, with a budding curiosity in this wide wonderful world closed (for her).

We, the bibliophilic teenage girls, must recount, remember, and honor this bright bulb darkened by the Holocaust. It is we who must never forget. We must honor Anne-all the Annes of the world.

The Diary of a Young Girl is a must-read for any and all yearning to be free. Because Anne never had the chance to grow up, to experience the euphoria of graduating college, even high school. She never moved away from her parents to find herself. She never lived voted, drove or lived life after the war.

Rather, she painted a daring, immeasurable picture of life for a brilliant girl hiding in hopes of achieving these things.

For that, we must remember.



chronology courtesy the Anne Frank Organization

edited (resource formatting/tags): 26 May 2017