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It's only 11:29 ayem and already this day can blow me.

Currently, it's a measly 51˚F. On May 1st. Why couldn't I have been stranded in Hawaii or Venice or the south of France?

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.

No writing yesterday, but I read Kathe Koja's "Teratisms" (1991, in Ellen Datlow's A Whisper of Blood) aloud to Spooky. It is easily one of the most brilliant pieces of dark fiction published during the second half of the Twentieth Century and was a definite influence on my early work. I'm hoping to kickstart my brain.

Tonight, new Game of Thones and also new Penny Dreadful (!!!!!). So, that's what will get me through the day. That and the promise of an interesting RP scene this evening. These days, I'm living half my life in RP. Ironically, all the RP is taking place in London and Berlin. I can't even pretend to be someplace warm.

TTFN,

Aunt Beast

"Time is no healer if you're not there..."

I wish I had something interesting to say about yesterday. But I didn't write. We went to the storage unit in Pawtucket and I sorted through papers from...well...my whole life, it felt like. looking for stuff that needs to go to Brown. I found my high-school porn stash, Playboy and Hustler from 1979 and 1980. Who the fuck keeps shit like that? I found the TV Guide from the week of the final episode of M*A*S*H (February 12-18, 1983). College notebooks. A sketchpad from high school. That was yesterday. Hours in a cold, dark storage unit. My hands got so cold they burned for an hour after we left and they warmed up again.

The weather here is still cool. Currently, it's sunny and 58˚F. So ends April 2016.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

Nothing To See Here

I'm just not up for this today. I hardly slept for worrying. It's a chilly 53˚F.

Whatever,
Aunt Beast
Cold today. Again. But sunny, and the world is getting properly green. Currently, it's only 56˚F, and we had a frost warning this morning.

Yesterday afternoon I read about Oxford, Alabama passing a law so that anywhere within the city’s police jurisdiction, it is now a criminal offense for transgender people to use restrooms that match their gender identity unless they have undergone surgery and successfully changed the gender marker on their birth certificate. That, of course, is a very, very small fraction of transgender folks. Surgery is expensive, dangerous, often requires travel, and isn't desired by everyone. Moreover, many states will not change the sex on a birth certificate, even when proof of reassignment surgery is provided.

Each individual violation will result in a $500 fine or up to six months in jail.

Oxford's about forty miles east of Birmingham, on I-20, on the way to Atlanta. I read the article, and it truly hit me that I am a sort of exile. It is becoming increasingly unsafe for transgender people to live in the South, and if I were to move back home, or even go visit my mom and sister, I'd be facing this crap. The fact of it hit me like a load of bricks. It shut me down for the day. On Facebook I wrote:

How long now until Southern states (and cities) begin forbidding people to dress in a way that is considered inconsistent with their "sex at birth"? There are already places where laws against appearing in public "in disguise" are on the books (old, old laws), and those would be easy to tweak to use against transgender persons. There is no longer anything outlandish about this fear. How long before there are attempts to criminalize everything from drag shows to sex reassignment?

And I'd hoped that today would look silly and alarmist, so that I'd have to take it down. But it doesn't look silly and it doesn't look alarmist, and I can't take it down. After I transitioned, I lived in Alabama and Georgia for another fifteen years (1993-2008). And I took a lot of bullshit off people, but I did at least have the protection of the law.

It seems to me now that, for all that time, I was living in a sort of cultural cold war, and now the South is engaged in an all-out shooting war against transgender persons. And I feel I should be doing something, but I have no idea what that could be.

Later,
Aunt Beast

And a cowcat named Detroit.

The sun is back. The temperature, though, is a chilly 53˚F.

Manhattan is so much warmer than Providence.

I spent yesterday trying to find the vignette I need to write for Sirenia Digest #123, which I know has something to do with mummification and might be set in HPL's Dream Lands (I know I said I wasn't writing anymore Lovecraft stories, but what the hell.), but that's about all I know.

Right now, I'm trying to put the failures and disappointments and bafflement of 2013, 2014, and 2015 behind me. I have a novel to write, and, truth be told, this is really my first novel since The Drowning Girl. Next year I have two short-story collections coming out (unless Mythos Tales is released late in 2016). And that's what I have to focus on. Fuck the past three years.

Fuck the omnipresent chill.

If I can't fix it, there's no sense dwelling on it.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

Postscript: Despite the cold, an ice-cream truck is toodling along our street. But at least they're playing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town."

"What we will need is a gleaming key..."

A shitty day here, 46˚F and rainy.

And I have voted for Hilary Clinton. I fear it's almost certain that Rhode Island will go to Sanders. Which is a shame, but there you go. We have too few delegates to sway anything one way or another.

And here is the table of contents for Dear Sweet Filthy World:

Werewolf Smile
Vicaria Draconis
Paleozoic Annunciation
Charcloth, Firesteel, and Flint
Shipwrecks Above
The Dissevered Heart
Exuvium
Drawing from Life
The Eighth Veil
Three Months, Three Scenes, With Snow
Workprint
Tempest Witch
Fairy Tale of the Maritime
– 30 –
The Carnival is Dead and Gone
Scylla for Dummies
Figurehead
Down to Gehenna
The Granting Cabinet
Evensong
Latitude 41°21'45.89"N, Longitude 71°29'0.62"W
Another Tale of Two Cities
Blast the Human Flower
Cammufare
Here Is No Why
Hauplatte/Gegenplatte
Sanderlings
Interstate Love Song (Murder Ballad No. 8)

Yesterday, I put together the manuscript for the chapbook that will accompany the collection, The Aubergine Alphabet: A Fourth Primer and sent that off to Subterranean Press. This will be my thirteenth short story collection, if you include Frog Toes and Tentacles (2005) and Tales from the Woeful Platypus (2007).

Toady, I'm starting something for Sirenia Digest #123.

The sun's supposed to come back tomorrow, and it will be a little warmer. Hang in there, Beast.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

"But teach him how to kill...then..."

Mostly sunny today, and the sun is warm, but the high will only be 61˚F or so.

The tree has been saved.

And yesterday I sent the ms. for Dear Sweet Filthy World off to Subterranean Press. However, I forgot to send the ms. for the chapbook, The Aubergine Alphabet, and I should do that today. Part of me wants to just go to the zoo.

I desperately need an idea for Sirenia Digest #123 (April 2015).

I'm reading the new memoir from the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (Mem. 15), Anatomy of the Dodo (Raphus cucullatus L., 1758): An Osteological Study of the Thirioux Specimens.

We saw a pretty cool Irish horror film last night, The Hallow, directed by Corin Hardy. Faerie and body horror in one film, which proves to be an excellent combination. Faerie as a parasitic fungus. See it.

Later Taters,
Aunt Beast

"Do you know, mother...?"

Cloudy, chilly, wet. Currently, the temperature is 57˚F, but the windchill puts the feel at 49˚F.

Pretty much any way I look at it, April has been a travesty. Much of what needed to be done, workwise, hasn't been done. I've lost day after day to anger and depression and worry and fear. A big check came weeks late, which meant that a trip to Manhattan that I needed to take at the beginning of the month still hasn't happened. The ms. for Dear Sweet Filthy World, which I should have turned in a week ago, is still incomplete. There's research in South County for The Starkeeper that desperately needed to be done this month, but none of it has, in part because of the inclement weather. There was an unexpected medical bill. And it's time for me to worry about Sirenia Digest #123, though it feels like I only just put out #122. All in all, it's a mess. And sitting here at this moment I honestly do not know how I'm going to fix it.

So.

I'm not sure how to follow that.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

A small breath.

It's warm today, and the world is a little greener. The high was, I think, 77˚F, but it's already dropped ton 67˚F. Still a relief, and yesterday wasn't half bad.

And Prince is dead.

I thought I was up to writing an entry, but I find that I'm, and, anyway, there's nothing that won't wait until tomorrow.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

Entry #4,589

The spring has come to be the worst of it, which is antithetical to everything I used to feel about the progression of seasons. Once upon a time, before Providence, it was always a matter of surviving the winter – late November, December, January, the first half of February. And then there was spring. And spring was sudden and green and warm. By April, everything would be green. Spring was release from the cold. Hope for spring pulled me through the months of cold and the darkness of winter. Now, the expectation of spring is undone by the knowledge that it will arrive late, straggling, and be a chilly season when the green comes with interminable slowness. Like Eliot said, for me April really has become "the cruelest month."

I'm asking the landlord to please not take down the tree, but I don't expect them to change their mind.

Today, the temperature may reach 74˚F. Tomorrow will be warm, too. Then all next week will be cold and rainy. They'll have low eighties in Birmingham next week. And I'm very near to buying a plane ticket, though I can't afford the cost.

I haven't worked in days. I'm not sure how many days.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

"The sky above won't fall down."

Yesterday was not merely a bad day. It was close to the gold standard, and, worse yet, it was a bad day that resisted my concerted efforts to pull out of the darkness. But at least there was light at the end of it, with the news that Clinton had won New York.

Today, it's sunny and still cold. Currently, it's 53˚F, which would be fine. In early February.

Yesterday morning I woke to the news that the tree outside my office window is going to be cut down. Twice now Kathryn and I have managed to save that tree. But this time, I'm pretty sure there's nothing we can do. The new owner wants it gone. This is the tree that shades the western side of the house in summer (admittedly, an abysmally short season). This is the tree that has helped to keep me functional time after time after time. On this bleak and almost treeless New England street, it's a small mercy. And I honestly don't know how I'm going to cope with the loss of it. Saturday or Sunday someone will come with saws and axes, and then it will be gone, and it will be that much harder for me to sit down at this desk every day and try to work.

This year, it will not even be permitted to green.

And so it goes.

I have this sickness in the very center of me. It never leaves. But there are times it eclipses the world.

There are other things I was going to say today, but suddenly I see how they are of no consequence whatsoever.

Later,
Aunt Beast

"I am nothing without pretend." [∞]

And today it's winter again. Currently 60˚F, our high today was a good fifteen degrees colder than yesterday's. Days like yesterday I can try to lie, tell myself I don't loathe New England. Days like today, it's simply not an option.

Later,
Aunt Beast

"Als das Kind Kind war..."

Today it is spring, well and truly spring. Currently, it's 75˚F. Spooky and I have been sitting out in the front parlour in the sun, working a Norman Rockwell jigsaw puzzle, listening to the Wings of Desire soundtrack. I should probably try to do some work.

I hardly slept again last night. My feet are swollen and screaming.

I need to finish printing out the ms. for Dear Sweet Filthy World, which will be, I see now, the grimmest thing I've published since Confessions of a Five-Chambered Heart.

I had to be at my doctor's this morning for a pee test. I won't even get started on that bullshit. I pissed in their plastic cup. My foul, dark morning urine. The lab tech was the chirpy woman who gets excited whenever she has the opportunity to take my blood, because "you're a bleeder." You wouldn't think anyone would be so cheerful when they spend everyday playing with other people's piss, blood, and shit, but you would be wrong. Little Miss Fucking Sunshine, for bodily fluids.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Awake too early, not enough sleep, but at least there's sun, and the trees are greener. We may get close to 70˚F today. I'll open windows.

I'd venture out, but I need to finish formatting Dear Sweet Filthy World. Yesterday, I set aside the first draft of the ms., which really wasn't working, and started over with a new table of contents, a different group of stories for a more coherent, cohesive collection. And I have to write a short introduction, which I will call "Houses and Heads."

And though this is an extremely short entry, I see no need to draw this out.

Cheers,
Aunt Beast

"Who wants albino food, anyway?"

I've been awake since about 9:30 ayem, and I'm still not awake. Outside it's bright, and there's more green than yesterday, but it's a measly 54˚F (feels like 49˚F, thanks to windchill). We might be decently warm by early June. Used to be, my favorite season was Summer, then Spring. These days, my favorite season is July.

Yesterday, I sorted stories and began compiling the ms. for Dear Sweet Filthy World> I need to make considerably more headway with that today. Currently, I've chosen 67,539 words worth of fiction. I need to get that up to about 100k.

Going through files yesterday (actual real-world files, not computer files) I cam across an uncashed check for $98, dated 24 October 2014. It's the third uncashed check I've found in the past week.

Last night, we watch Star Wars: The Force Awakens for the third time. I truly do adore that film. And it actual looks much better on Blu-ray than it did digitally projected on a big screen.

Today's slippery. I have to mind where I put my feet.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Sunny and 54˚F here. There's a bit more green than there was yesterday.

Last night, just before bed, I wrote down, "The black-red storm passed, as it always eventually does, and I can think again. I regain some measure of perspective, and I can breathe again." And I'm still better this afternoon, which is a relief. There was a time I didn't share my bipolar bullshit with the whole damned world, and, really, it was a better time, for me and for the world.

Yesterday I finished with the box for Brown. The Twenty-first box, as twenty have proceeded it. I found my very first short story contract, the contract from Steve Rasnic Tem for "Between the Flatirons and the Deep Green Sea." I signed it on 7-30-93*, which I see was a Friday. I was living alone in a tiny apartment in Birmingham, on the side of Red Mountain**, along 16th Avenue South. The contract had gone to my old p.o. box in Homewood. I was paid $144, and that was my first income as a fiction writer. That contract is among the tens of thousands of pieces of paper I'm entrusting to the John Hay Library.

Today, I really do have to make some progress on Dear Sweet Filthy World, which seems to be the title of the collection. I keep waiting for it to become something else, instead.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

* 8,295 days ago, or 22 years, 8 months, 16 days ago (excluding the end date).
** 33°29'30.91"N, 86°47'55.00"W.
Sunny today, but it's cold. Currently 53˚F. The trees are infinitesimally greener than they were yesterday.

Yesterday I sorted papers for Brown. There's to be more of that today, and, if I can keep my spirits up, work on Dear Sweet Filthy World. I have yet to settle on the Table of Contents, much less assemble the manuscript.

I'm tired. I'm not sleeping well. The only thing receding faster than the Greenland Ice Sheet is my gums. My feet are so bad I can't walk any distance without a cane, and even then only if I'm willing to deal with the pain. I leave the house once every couple of weeks. My eyesight is history. My guts are shot. The list goes on and on. In my twenties and thirties I imagined that I'd age with a bit more dignity. In my forties I began to suspect the truth of it.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Sunny today, but it's only 51˚F out there. Cold spring is alive and well.

Yesterday was a fantastically bad day. I made the mistake of leaving the house, first time since April 1st. I think we were out there maybe an hour and a half before I had Spooky bring me back home. The highlight of the whole shitty excursion was driving down Thayer Street and seeing the line of college students waiting, in their down parkas and shorts and short skirts and mittens, eyes glued to their "devices," huddling beneath umbrellas, for their free ice-cream cone at Ben & Jerry's. There must have been fifty of them, stretching down the block. Have I mentioned that it was in the low 50s˚F, that the wind was gusting to 35 mph, and that it was pouring rain? I think the very definition of asshole is a rich Brown student who'll stand in line out in weather like that, just to get free ice cream.

But maybe that's just me.

I wish I'd taken a picture.

There were things I was going to say, but it all comes down to the same miserable refrain. And I think we're all sick to puking death of that.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

"A philanderer's tie, a murderer's shoe."

Rain, 55˚F (46˚F windchill), wind gusting to 25 to 35 mph.

And I'm flat.

I think I'm leaving the house today. I have no idea where we'll go, but it's been twelve days, now. I might have yesterday, but I was simply too ill.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Very windy today, cloudy, and still cold. Which is how it will be, I think, until May. Currently, it's 54˚F.

I've not been outside since Friday, April 1st.

Sirenia Digest #122 went out to subscribers yesterday.

And that's all I have today.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Sunny today. Currently, it's 43˚F.

Yesterday, I wrote 930 words on "Pillbug" and came to THE END, for a total of 3,551 words. Today, I'll put the digest together, Issue #122, and subscribers should have it by tomorrow evening. Meanwhile, I have two boxes I need to sort for Brown, and I have to decide on the ToC for Dear Sweet Filthy World, and, most importantly, it's time for me to make the big mental shift towards The Starkeeper.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions.

And I need a shower in the worst way.

The news blackout is going well. For all I know, the bluebird of happiness has put the snatch on Bernie Sanders. He could be halfway to Oz by now. Yo, witches! Keep watching the skies!

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
It's sunny today, but nothing's green, and it's only 46˚F. So, as a spring day, I give today a solid D+.

I'll start talking C's when the temperature rises above 65˚F and there's are leaves.

Yesterday, I wrote 1,0567 words on "Pillbug." I absolutely have to finish the piece this afternoon.

Please have a look at the current eBay auctions. Thank you.

I've decided that I'm going to put myself into a news blackout until the New York primary. That means no Twitter and a minimum of Facebook. Hopefully, this will help to get my stress levels back under control. I can't go through every day angry. My constant frustration and worry aren't going to help anyone. I miss the days when the news was something you could turn off or avoid by not picking up a paper.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
The good news is the snow has been removed from the forecast. The bad news is spring's still nowhere in sight. Currently, it's 49˚F and rainy, no green to be seen. Tonight's low is forecast at 28˚F. And the sixties that were forecast for next week, those went away when the snow went away.

I may have to spend the rest of my life in Rhode Island, but I find it hard to believe I'll ever be able to make peace with this climate.

I did 409 words on "Pillbug" yesterday. I worked on the ToC for Dear Sweet Filthy World. I finished Victor La Valle's superb The Ballad of Black Tom.

Gonna go have my Red Bull. My ass could use some wings.

xoxo
C
Rainy day, and it's only 52˚F. But at least all that fucking snow is gone. As long as we don't get walloped again this weekend, we might be free and clear.

I only slept four hours last night. Since March 15th, I've only left the house twice.

I can't keep this up.

Yesterday, I read over what I'd written on Tuesday, and I wrote a few new sentences.

I watched Facebook "friends" "unfriend" me because I've finally had enough of not saying what I think about Sanders and his cult of personality for fear of...well...pretty much what's happening because I've finally started saying what I think about Sanders and his cult of personality.

No, he can't win the nomination. This is not a question of opinion. It's pretty much a mathematical certainty. At this point, he poses almost no genuine threat to the party he's high-jacked. But it galls me all the same. No, I'm not a far-left liberal. I'm not interested in a revolution. I'm a slightly left of center liberal interested in fixing the system we have and preserving and expanding upon the progress we've made, not casting it all aside for the pipe dreams of socialists and democratic socialists. I've lived under five Republican presidents, and I know what we stand to lose if we to fail to send a candidate to the election who has a chance of beating the Republicans.

I do not back the lesser of two evils. I did not back Walter Mondale in 1984 and Michael Dukakis in 1988, Bill Clinton in 1992 (and 1996) and Al Gore in 2000, John Kerry in 2004 and Barack Obama in 2008 (and 2012) because I vote the lesser of two evils. I supported those candidates because I believe in the Democratic Party and the principles and values it represents and recognize and cherish the advances it has fostered. And it makes me ill watching Sanders' disingenuous, opportunistic attempt to use it as a stepping stone to the presidency. Sanders and his supporters are cynically employing the Democratic Party the way that a cuckoo employs the nests of other species of birds, the same way that Trump is using the Republican Party. This is the Year of the American Cuckoo.

And I'm tired of watching and being silent.

If you want to stop following me, fine. If you want to get rid of all my books because I'm not "feelin' the Bern," then that's what you have to do. But please do not attempt to use the comments section of this journal (or my Facebook) to convince me how wrong I am. You make your mistakes, and I'll make mine.

Yeah, I could have kept my mouth shut and saved myself the bother. But I've been doing that too long.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Despite getting seven hours sleep last night (I've only been getting six), I'm very much not awake today. The snow out there isn't helping. nor are the dreams. Night before last, something awful that I was trying not to see, something black and mercifully indistinct that I only just managed to keep always at the periphery of my vision.

I'm sitting here in a T-shirt and cut offs, doing my best to pretend that the snow piled in on the roof outside my window is anything at all but snow. There was only a little melting yesterday, as the temperature barely rose above freezing. The low last night was somewhere in the low 20s˚F. Currently, it's sunnyish and only 37˚F. There's talk of heavy rain tomorrow, and a high in the forties, so hopefully that will wash away most of it. By next week, we might have temperatures in the sixties again. The fruit trees in New England have taken a beating from this, and I expect produce will be shit this summer. Me, I just want to see some green, please.

Yesterday I wrote 1,052 words on...something. I kept the title "Pillbug" from the false start of April 2nd, but tossed out the rest.

Last night, too stressed out to think, I settled for television, the latest episodes of Better Call Saul, Vinyl, and Shameless. I read a little.

Latter, just before bed, I posted the following on Facebook:

I don't think there's been this much bullshit stress in my life since about 1992. Health, money, work, this lunatic presidential election, fucking weekly bombings and mass shootings, the South's determination to undo every bit of progress it has made in the past fifty years...I've just about had enough of it all. And through it all, I'm supposed to keep on telling fairy tales.

I have nothing much to add to that.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

Postcards from Apricember and Apriuary

Yesterday morning, when I made my entry here, there was a shitty little scum of snow on the ground. But it kept snowing, and it kept snowing all damn day until just after dark. Before it was over, we had five or six inches. In fucking April. This will do nothing good for farmers, and likely our spring greening has been pushed back weeks. I sat here, unable to think, playing loud music loudly, trying to drown out the muffled, smothering silence that comes with snow, the excruciating stillness. I spent most of the day and night in an opiate haze, which just barely made it all bearable.

"The pain must feel like snow." ~ David Bowie

Currently, it's 28˚F, but the windchill has us at 18˚F. I think last night's low with windchill was 7˚F. The sky out there will blind you, then eat you alive.

In April.

From last night:



But at least we don't have to worry about finding a new place to live anytime soon. The house has sold to someone who's not raising our rent, so at least there's that. It's a bittersweet relief, since I don't want to be in Rhode Island, and that certainly includes this house.

Sanders will likely carry the day in Wisconsin, but not by a spectacular margin, and with Clinton's forthcoming New York win, it's too little, too late. With superdelegates, Hilary Clinton is now a mere 330 delegates from the win.

There's really not much else worth saying about yesterday. Late, I watched Gregory Peck in Robert Parrish's The Purple Plain (1954), based on H.E. Bates' novel of the same name.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Has anyone noticed that the internet has become the visual equivalent of the Las Vegas Strip crossed with an issue of the National Enquirer? No, that's not a compliment.

I awoke to an inch or two of snow, after we had snow on and off all day yesterday. At one point, a squall had dropped visibility to the point that I could, from the front parlor, see only partway down the street. Half an hour later, the sun was out. Currently, it's 26˚F in Providence, with the windchill at 23˚F. This is our spring, the reason I survived the winter:



I didn't write yesterday. I barely was able to think.

I worked on a Norman Rockwell jigsaw puzzle. There's something people don't know about me. I'm a great admirer of the art of Norman Rockwell. Anyway, I worked on a jigsaw puzzle. I played Guild Wars 2. We watched the second half of the four-hour Walt Disney segment of American Experience (we saw the first half the night before). I listened to music. I ground my teeth. I cursed my rotten, aching, numb feet, which are hurting worse than they have in a long time. I tried to keep my eyes from the windows. I thought about taking a shower.

How can the year be a quarter done? I've hardly left the house.

TTHN,
Aunt Beast

The Esoteric Order of Brussel Sprouts

I woke to snow. Not much of it, and it's mostly melted away. But it's the insult to the very idea of April that counts here. Though, I've learned that Yankees, on occasion, do take their April with ice. Currently, it's 38˚F, but feels like 28˚F. Yes, this is spring.

I began a piece yesterday, based on the Vince Locke illustration that I posted yesterday. I titled it "Pillbug." I like the title, but virtually nothing else about the 505 words I wrote. Well, maybe the name of a character. So, today I expect to keep the title and a character name, scrap what I wrote yesterday, and begin again. I haven't much time this month for false starts.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast
Rainy and dour here in the hopeless land of hope. It's 47˚F, and the waiting for the return of spring has begun in earnest.

Yesterday, no writing because after my two spectacularly bad days, Kathryn thought it best I go with her on her round of errands. So, I rode along to Job Lot and Benny's (looking for cheap jigsaw puzzles), then to the post office on Thayer Street (we saw a cardinal), then to Eastside Market and Whole Foods. There were a few green trees. There was a rather cheerful-looking weeping willow. A few splotches of green here and there, and I hope they survive the cold that's coming.

But no writing.

Today, I have to begun a vignette for this illustration by Vince Locke. We used to do this every now and then, reverse the order, so that instead of him illustrating something I've written, I write for something he's drawn:



That could be almost anything at all.

Last night, Spooky made a spectacular lasagna while I watched a documentary about Charlie Company (C Company, 52nd Infantry) in Vietnam. We watched the new Archer.

We also streamed the "Music of David Bowie," live from Radio City Music Hall. The best performances were "Black Star" (Amanda Palmer, Jherek Bischoff, Anna Calvi, and the Kronos Quartet), "Ashes to Ashes" (Michael Stipe and Karen Elson), "Rebel, Rebel" (Perry Farrel), "Cactus" (the Pixies), and "Life on Mars" (the Flaming Lips, with Wayne Coyne riding on Chewbacca's shoulders).

It was a day, and it was a night, on the one-year anniversary of our having decamped from Neil's cabin in Woodstock, after our long, long winter stay.

Later Taters,
Aunt Beast
Yesterday was another very, very bad day, an ugly day, a day of rage and suicidal fantasies, in part because of the hellish winds that blew from morning until dusk, ~60 mph gusts, and it was pretty much a long sustained gust. The wind works its way underneath my skin, and it scrapes my nerves raw. The temperature reached, I think, 67˚F, but I had no wish to be out in that wind. We may reach 66˚F toady, with rain – but then winter comes galloping back to New England, and it isn't likely to leave until at least mid April.

But I have to get back on the horse. I've lost two days, and there's nothing I can do about the shitty weather or about Cold Spring or about not being able to afford to move back South. I can only do what I can actually do.

Sounds like shit when you say it aloud.

On the to do list over the next week:

1. A vignette for Sirenia Digest #122
2. Settle on ToC for Dear Sweet Filthy World
3. Begin assembling ms. for Dear Sweet Filthy World

Which is more than enough for one week.

Fuck it.

TTFN,
Aunt Beast

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