Pet Poetry

I have been writing a lot of things that are not this thing lately. And I feel kind of guilty about that.

Mostly what I’ve been doing is working on a new project over on Instagram. It’s called Pet Poetry and I’m pretty excited about it. I had been writing pet poems to myself for a while, but now I’ve got people submitting photos of their pets for me to write about. It’s super fun!

Here’s the installment from this morning:

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The poem that accompanied it:

From time to time
the servants
bring me food.
They bedeck me in
flowers of unknown origin.
They bring me meat
hewn from the flesh of my enemies.

From time to time
I deign to let them
scratch me behind my
delicate ears.

It’s good to be the queen.

What’s crazy is that the photo from today was submitted by a person I don’t know at all. We weren’t connected on social media or through meatspace in any way before I created my new twitter account for this project. She found me through there, submitted a photo of her lovely Princess Yumi, and I wrote her a poem.

I feel like I might be on the cusp of something kind of big with this project. My friends are all raving about it. And I feel super good doing it, more importantly. I have 9 submissions in my que already, with 4 poems written for them.

I’m loving doing this. I hope it gets as big as people seem to think it will. I would love to make it into a book or something, when I have enough poems brought together.

Between the pet poetry thing and the gaming book I am working on, blogging has taken a back seat for the past week. Which I’m super bummed about. I have some drafts of blog entries and I promise to pump out more content this week, regardless of my poetry demands. I at least want to do a couple of things for Yeah, Write, which I have also been falling behind on.

Ah, the life of a budding writer. I feel like I’m too creative for my own good at this point. Like there aren’t enough hours in the day for me to get the writing done that I want to get done. Which is a weird thing to me. I’ve never been this productive before. Maybe I was just focusing my attention in the wrong directions, up until now.

So yea, this has been my most rambling blog entry ever? Sorry about that. I’ll get more on point soon. Promise.

Dear Writers: Monogamy is Boring

Ok, not entirely. But hear me out.

I’ve been watching Scandal on Netflix. Binge watching season four. Without giving away any real spoilers, one of the chief issues dealt with by Olivia Pope in the show is how to choose between Guy #1 and Guy #2. No matter what else is going on in the show, the pressure to make That Choice is omnipresent. When she is on the phone with one guy, you wonder why she didn’t call the other guy.

At one point during this past season she announced that she wasn’t going to chose. She was going to be free. She was going to dance. And Guy #2, who was there with her at the time, could either dance with her or get the hell off her dance floor.

I admired her in that moment. Of course, with three seasons already under my belt, I knew that her refusal to make a choice wouldn’t last long.

And it didn’t. Within a few episodes we were back in Choice territory.

I have a couple of feelings about this. The chief feeling among them is that I’m sick and tired of that story arch of That Choice between one partner or another being used over and over again. It’s played out. I am no longer invested in it. I do not give a single solitary fuck which person’s genitals you decide to play with forever, Protaganist. There is nothing less interesting to me than That Choice. I think that limiting characters to monogamous relationships makes it so that choosing on partner as opposed to another is almost inevitable. I could list a gagillion shows and books and movies that do just that. But instead, I’m going to talk about one that doesn’t.

Lately I’ve been watching Wentworth. I talked about it in a blog entry last month. One of the things I have realized that has been so refreshing in that show is the sparsity of romance. Franky Doyle fucks a couple of people, yes. There is sex in the show. There is even a mini love story between an inmate and another person. But there is not, among the main characters, a distracting and overwhelming story arch involving That Choice between one person and another. And the lack of that particular trope is glorious. It is entirely freeing to see characters passing across the screen with motivations almost entirely separated from those of romantic love.

And honestly, who needs more of that story line, anyway? I’ll give you the run down. It goes something like this:

Oh, I have to Choose. I’ll Choose this person.

Oh no! It didn’t work out! I wonder if I can still have my Fallback person?

Oh no! Fallback doesn’t want me! And now I’m sad and my life is over because romance is the Only Thing That Matters and the people I want to fuck won’t talk to meeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

*cries forever*

Fucking. Yawn.

Another aspect of That Choice is the tired leaning upon of monogamy as the only form of romantic attachment.

It should be said that yes, I am monogamous. I have also had non-monogamous relationships. Monogamy works better for me. But how amazing would it be to see a triad play out on screen? A relationship that contained more than the usual two people looking to each other at the exclusion of all else? Even if it wasn’t a major plot point, it would be delightful to see different relationship models play out on television.

Of course, being in a non-monogamous situation would be pretty novel. As a major point of plot, it would bring up all kinds of interesting conversations and situations for the characters to work through. If they live in a small town, things could get interesting when people wind up becoming interested in the partners of other people they are close with. Clear and honest conversation could be a serious thing that characters need to learn and exhibit. I mean, the topics and plot lines that open up are endless. For me as a viewer, the idea of this gets me excited. Because honestly? I am tired of being able to predict all of a character’s choices from the jump based on some writer’s use of Every Trope That Ever Was.

As a writer… the possibilities for my characters that arise simply from me opening their relationships interesting ways excites me more than words can really express.

But Hollywood? TV people? Get on this shit. Because the stories that surround monogamy and the choices that surround it really aren’t interesting anymore.

A History of Unsettled Debts

When I was 14, I threw my pads at a crowd of men and watched them scatter like fish. Even the hint of my period was more terrifying to them than the gnashing of serrated teeth.

When I was older, the toying and teasing of lovers forced me away from parts that I should have embraced, feelings that I should have delved happily into.

The litany of horror and disgust built up quite a tab.

Reparations must be made. But it’s hard to know where to start.

When she was 14 she noticed the lurking presence of a security guard while she was with her friends at the mall. Eagle-eyed, he followed her, eventually stopping at the food court and chatting idly with her friends.

She felt guilty, though she had done nothing. She felt nervous despite her innocence.

Years later, these experiences compounded, she finds herself in a sea of flesh-toned people, voices raised, shoving herself at the gates of oppression and awaiting an answer.

The bias is so obvious. The litany of abuses have become a chorus against which she sets her voice.

Reparations must be made. And she has barely begun.

When he was 14 he found himself flat on his back, slurs and insults chanted at him. He was too different to be let alone. To strange for anonymity.

Now he stands on stages and announces his truth to the world. Makeup immaculate. Chin up.

When the show is over, he still feels the sting. Alone, his brave face cracks and runs in black lines down his cheeks.

Reparations must be made.

But when the list of abuses is so long and varied, when the charges are built up over so many years, it’s hard to know who should pay the bill.