Screw this candy-assed Valentine's Day shit. The Romans got it right with Lupercalia. Now, if you want to sacrifice a couple of goats and a dog to Lupa, then run around town naked, save for a bloody thong of goatskin —— that's a goddamn reason to get out of bed. This sugar-coated hearts and flowers crap? Not even a weak echo of a genuine fertility rite. Do it up good and proper, or leave me the hell alone.
The sentiment remains the same, to the letter.
Yesterday was a day off. After not leaving the house for thirteen days, I managed to leave the house. Fuck you, Mistresses Agoraphobia and Social Anxiety. I'm not going to live like that. I'm not going to hide in this room, in my words, while the world goes by. Anyway, yesterday we went out into the filthy winter-bound city. Humans make such a nasty, sad mess of the snow. It was too ugly to stare at very long, so we headed for Conanicut Island. I played Arcade Fire on the iPod and read David Petersen's marvelous Mouse Guard: Winter 1152 while Spooky drove. As soon as we were clear of Providence, the ugly black trash-littered snow was replaced with white snow laying on all the forests and fields, so white and undisturbed it might well have fallen only yesterday. We crossed the Jamestown Bridge, and below us the sea was choppy and the waves whitecapped and precisely the color of slate. The sky was overcast, a blue-lavender hiding the sky (which helps).
We stopped briefly at Zeke's Creek Bait and Tackle and Seafood (which is closed for the season), to survey the frozen saltmarsh.
We continued to Beavertail, where the wind was so fierce it was hard to stand. The temperature was somewhere in the '30s, but I can only imagine what the windchill must have been. On the eastern, windward side of the point, we could only stand to be out of the car for a few minutes at a time. It wouldn't have taken long to get frostbite. It was a little better on the lee shore, and we watched huge crows that might have been ravens, and flocks of seabirds bobbing on the rough water. Then we headed over to West Cove, the beach where we hunt sea glass. It was a bit more sheltered (also a lee shore). Spooky found a few pieces of glass. I found the premaxilla of a cormorant. It was a freezing, bleak day, but the air was clean, and there was a grandeur in the bleakness. That is my world, out there, not in this dreadful room, trapped at the dreadful fucking keyboard. We headed back home about five p.m.
This would be a good day for comments.
There are photos, behind the cut:
The frozen salt marsh, view to the west. The span of the Newport Bridge is visible in the distance.
View to the northeast.
Rotting pilings in the saltmarsh. View to the northwest.
West shore at Beavertail Point, facing into a bone-chilling wind. View to the west and south.
Western side of Beavertail, view to the north, towards the Lion's Head chasm.
Beavertail, with the lighthouse. View to the south.
Ruins of the WWII fort at Beavertail, entrance to an old bunker.
At west cove. A lobster trap had broken free of its moorings and was at the surface, being dashed about in the surf.
West Cove, view to the southeast.
North again, pastures north of the salt marsh. Canadian geese, and again the Newport Bridge is visible in the distance. View to the east.
Trees along a fieldstone wall. View to the west.
Snow-covered pastures, view to the southwest.
All photographs Copyright © 2011 by Caitlín R. Kiernan and Kathryn A. Pollnac