Showing posts with label Conversations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Conversations. Show all posts

Monday, November 01, 2021

in unknowing


-------------------------
some beginnings rush to broadcast
they rise up

in the way fear always sees love
and uses it up

although none of us is too empty for life
I hear

this tree saying: I'm only just a seed 
 hold me

a breath sighing: I want to be born 
end me

---------------------------

Pic: Nu as we set off down the driveway. All my outside time with Nu these days is in the dark--whether they are walks to the school bus or (here) getting ready to put the chickens to bed.


Thursday, October 28, 2021

patch of happy

This patch of brilliant blue sky made me so happy. I was walking out of my building after four classes (five if you count the colleague's class I observed for their tenure letter).  

I had thrown my head back feeling the lift of a good work day (that was thankfully done) and had to marvel at how much the sky matched Bluey who was waiting to take me home where I knew Big A was making pizza and At was coming over for a family dinner.

As it turns out it was even better because L came over bearing a pie she'd baked for Nu who has been a very, very good "chicken daddy" indeed.

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

two notes in a minor key


A. This photo on FB marketplace gave me major Hemingway-babyshoes flash fiction vibes.

B. Looking over minutes from last month's faculty meeting (which I had joined online) it turns out that my only contribution had been re. the library deaccession: "Maya—This is a blow. Used to be in acquisitions for post colonialism. Loves teaching in the library stacks. Students are missing opportunity physical catalogues. Going to sell books for peanuts—not placing them in another library. Very upset."

Those last two words made me chuckle extra hard. Not sure if I claimed to be very upset or if the empathetic poet-novelist-playwright colleague who took minutes that day summarized my rant. 

Monday, October 25, 2021

contrast



This is MD's collage of different seasons built around the same treescape at Fenner from last year. This year has been all rain. It rained all day today, for instance. I wonder what this year's collage will look like. 

At least being stuck indoors meant I got things off the to-do list like a monster since I had all that new week energy anyway.

Excited for student projects to take off this week. 

Not excited about meeting HR to troubleshoot health insurance for Nu.


Sunday, October 24, 2021

a variety of strikes


<<<When At was over for birthday celebrations on Friday, he left me a little present on the altar. He's been helping with the Kellogg workers' strike and he and his green jacket made it to the Midwestern Modern Twitter account. Fame!

Still busy celebrating Big A's birthday weekend here. Also: UU, OWL, gardening, A hang with JL to celebrate her new place. But also a weekend where I seem to have blown off three parties (a secular muddle of early halloween and karva chauth) due to a combination of work/malaise.

When I complained about the foggy day to EM as I was trying to beg off going on a walk with her, she said we should pretend we were "visiting Scotland or some other place where the dreary weather has been romanticized." My friends are loving, forgiving and so, so smart.

Friday, October 22, 2021

ahead of me


Got to work so early there was no one else around... the sun's pretty high in the sky in this picture, but so is the moon. It turned out to be a long day at work, leading to some disappointed texts from Big A because I'd promised to be home by 6. 

But there was barely time to sit down between committee and student meetings all day. So at 4:30 when the last meeting was finally done, and I'd even managed to reach two dear students who've been down and out of touch this term, and I had just two more emails to send off, I cleaned my office thoroughly. (Because I was wearing--what my science colleagues called--my 1970's-style ENG. prof. dress with the tie collar? Who knows!)

I watered all the plants, trimmed, weeded, took tons of papers to the shred-it box, dusted, swept, and looked longingly at the armchair I'd installed in my office when I moved in... back when I thought the life of an academic involved hours of reading and looking out of the window. Ha. Some day it will come.

Thursday, October 21, 2021

happy animals



A long-awaited consult with the kind and compassionate people at the Gender Clinic at the U of M's children's hospital. (It's officially Mott Children's Hospital, but dude was pretty racist even for his time.) 

Nu's happy with the plan of action and we're happy Nu's happy.

<<<<Nu and I loved our Covid-Screening stickers too...

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

"I see your true colors"

 


Baker Woods with L this morning--we'd hoped for fall color and we got this bright green vista. It's the middle of October. Last year looked like this.

I sent it to family chat with the caption "fall colors" and they hearted it without appreciating my snark.

That's when I realized my people don't leave the house very often...

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

a-maze


I'm sorry I couldn't take any pictures of the amazing sunrise over the Maple River as I drove to work. I couldn't get a picture of the amazing combination of sunset-moonrise-full-moon as I made my way back home either, and for the same reason--I was going at 80 mph... I have to make do with a lingering look and what the kids and I used to call "a deep breath of beauty."

The picture I do have is this post-four-classes, end-of-the-day domestic-violence-awareness <<< labyrinth, which became a meaningful moment to pause and reconnect with some wonderful people (KC, SG) who do the hard work in our community. 

Oh, and I got to ask Loretta Ross about Dave Chappelle later. I know her as a reproductive justice activist, so her work on calling-in culture is new-ish to me.

Tuesdays have become Subway days at home, so I ate my sub while watching a show with Big A and the puppies and then took a snooze with them before Nu's bedtime too. Off to "proper" bed now.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

tai-chi and trains and triangles... o my

UU again this week; it's getting serious. 

Dropped Nu off at OWL, <<< checked out the tidied up community garden, and headed inside with my covenanted name badge and all. Still no singing, but we were asked to hum along today and that was nice. Even nicer was the surprise tai-chi as embodied worship mid-service. 

I filled out my pledge card for the year and started a new notebook for jottings--for notes on hymns and ideas and such... but today also for a nascent grocery list so I'd stop obsessing about food supplies and pay better attention to the sermon. 

I really did need to pay attention: the guest minister asked us to turn to a pew neighbor and say "welcome to the love train" (pretty cheesy, I agree); but I thought he'd said to say "welcome to the love triangle" and was too confused + embarrassed to say that enthusiastically.

Friday, October 15, 2021

pillow fort

 

Huckie got quite a workout moving things around in the rumpus room today.

I too got months of errands done. They've been literal weeks of being too tired to cart things over to the P.O. with all sorts of procrastinating rationalizations--it'll be crowded because it's Monday/Friday/lunch hour etc. I ended up there on a Friday at lunch hour and there was one person ahead of me--the person being served. 

Also me: freaking out because there was a poster advertising Ursula K. Le Guin stamps. They didn't have any, but I can get them online. And I will, watch me.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

suburbia, hedonia

I did have periods of intense industry--checking midterm submissions, prepping and arranging next week's new course, letters of rec., emails, etc. Nevertheless, today felt like the midterm break I'd been looking forward to... It's the ninth day of Navaratri, so it's Ayudha Puja and traditionally a day of contemplation rather than action, anyway.

Long-anticipated trip to IKEA with Big A for some shelving in the basement. Everything gave me intense nostalgia for when the kids were younger and used those plastic dishes and had those stuffies and cuddled in those bed linens. Then we transported everything back and discussed immaterial stuff like how I have a summer and winter wardrobe but nothing that delineates spring or fall... while we took a decadently long soak together. 

Nu had D&D club so we got to pick them up late and then some more soft family time. Tons of to-dos and errands tomorrow.

And I've been trying to write a poem on Babur, but it just isn't coming together...

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

the kids are alright



I know everyone is flagging from ennui and exhaustion. But my kids students are awesome despite it all. 

I'd re-shared the menstrual products drive my CASA director shared with me, and they decided to amplify it by putting it on the front page of the college newspaper. 

😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍

Saturday, October 09, 2021

adventures in bringing up a teen

 



I got permission to use this picture. But... I mean, it's pretty anonymous anyway, no?

Birthday weekend trip to Hot Topic (a.k.a. acc. to Nu as "my natural habitat") and the Halloween store.

Thursday, October 07, 2021

in the war for trans existence


Big A's claim to show-biz fame is that he was in a play with Dave Chappelle. A middle school play. That he got kicked off--Big A not DC--for being mouthy. 

I liked the Chappelle Show, I loved Block Party. When we moved back to Big A's old hometown in 2008, I remember being faintly star struck about seeing DC everywhere. His older kids were in At's range, his youngest is a year behind Nu. Then he became just one more familiar face; it helped that he and his wife E were unfailingly kind to everyone. E "loves" when I post FB pics of the kids; I swoon when she shares pics of award shows. 

But I haven't watched any of his Netflix specials after the first one--it just didn't even seem him--not the funny Neal Brennan Chappelle, not the kind Yellow Springs Chappelle. I vaguely remember a joke he told on the the first one about two gender studies profs he has coffee with regularly and how all he's thinking about when they're talking is that he'd like to fuck them and I kind of checked out after that. 

And now the constant TERF war. RainOfTerra's tweet thread broke me and then I messaged LA (possibly one of the afore-mentioned gender studies profs in YS) around 5:15 am with a link and asked if she or anyone else could reach out to Dave. Her reply started with "Ugh, Dave." and ended with "So I will share this and see if any of Dave’s friends can speak to him in any way he can hear, but I don’t hold out a lot of hope."

And I wish I could do more.

Tuesday, October 05, 2021

404

 


Full day: 10+ hours of teaching and grading and meetings and approx. 2 hours of commuting...

And it's now 3:18 am and I can't stop reading Anthony Doerr's Cloud Cuckoo Land.

Help.

(I liked his All the Light We Cannot See too although its very eurocentric depiction of WWII irked me. This one, OMG, is incredibly lush and includes wide swathes of humanity and historical times.)

Sunday, October 03, 2021

"children are the future"



A pre-sunrise grocery run for the biriyani At requested; a gray and misty sunrise hike with L; and then I went to UU this morning after 18 months away. Nu is in OWL this year and there's in-person service again. Sadly, reduced services: no singing, no physical greetings, no collection baskets.  I had about 45 mins between the end of services and OWL pick-up, and I found these <<< urban woods behind the church buildings to tramp around in. 

If you'd told me six months ago that I'd be happy on the day At moved out into his own apartment, I'd have questioned if you knew me at all. But I've increasingly been looking forward to this actually, as it's the best thing for him to start adulting on this impromptu gap year of his. Except... here we are on moving-out day, and it's close to midnight, and there's a growing pile of stuff by the door... and the child is still here.

Friday, October 01, 2021

Parkinsonian expansion

I guess Parkinson and his insight about work expansion remains valid. 

But in a more neutral way, now that I'm on campus so much, a lot of work gets done at work instead of after dinner. Time feels a bit less scramble-y because home/work demarcations feel more natural. Plus I get to see and be around more people, which is me at my happiest.

I still do work things after dinner, on the weekend, in the middle of the night, etc., but it's freeing to know that I spent 8/10 hours working already, so if it doesn't get done, it ought to be perfectly acceptable.

Being at work lets me get at all the stuff that gets shoved aside--like the graduation gift I'd gotten for a colleague in financial services and was finally able to hand deliver yesterday (months late...).

Pic: I thought I was taking a picture of flying geese as I walked across campus... but look, guys: No geese! Lovely blue sky, anyway. 

Thursday, September 30, 2021

too chicken

 




I'm too chicken to actually go into L and Nu's chicken coop (or you could say it's too chicken-y out there for me). 

But I just had to say hello to Ms. Margaret Hatcher (extreme left, looking directly into my camera).

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

the trip comes for us

(for L.B.)

by the time my thoughts arrive
helloes and hugs have played
our homophony

these trees nod their approval
and bird guardians sing 
of missing you, friend

Really, we could have climbed 
mountains today, survived 
whispered catastrophe

colonizing futures, monopolizing 
resolutions, our airy gestures 
perfect as finger-paintings


_______
Hike with L in Baker Woods after ages! I was catastrophizing, L was decoding and problem-solving. We mostly talked about changes to Big A's contract and how he may be working in Texas for a few months. I was actually so excited when he first told me because I have fond memories of visiting my Chelli in San Antonio, but soon realized he'd be going because it's a Covid hotspot right now... and...