gwynnega: (Default)
My "weird Brady Bunch" poem, "family (a form somehow must)," is up at the new issue of the Mithila Review. There's audio of me reading the poem, as well. The issue focuses on visual arts, and it looks beautiful.

Just as I had begun to post about the above, it was announced that the U.S. has dropped a giant bomb in Afghanistan, I assume because our so-called president wanted another jolt of accolades like he got after bombing Syria. I am horrified; I also feel very tired.

(This is the first Dreamwidth post that I will not be cross-posting to LiveJournal. I still haven't deleted my LJ, but I will once I've resolved some import issues.)
gwynnega: (Default)
I am hennaing my hair on a cool, overcast LA afternoon. (Rain is coming tonight. We've been having way more rain this winter than we've had in ages.)

Trump has been our so-called president for just over two weeks, though it feels like a lot longer. I am heartened by the pushback against his agenda, both in the streets and in the courts.

I've been playing this song a lot.
gwynnega: (Default)
It is Henna Day, on the warmest, sunniest day we've had in awhile. (We're supposed to get more rain and cool temps this week.)

Yesterday I saw the long-awaited Hidden Figures at my local movie theater. It made me cry a few times. As Lisa Bolekaja said on Twitter, the film "shows how racism (plus sexism sprinkled in) holds America back. Although a historical drama, it's really talking to 2017." The film seems more necessary than ever just now, with Trump's inauguration (I can barely type the words) less than two weeks away.
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
My poem "family (a form somehow must)" (my "weird Brady Bunch" poem) will appear in the April issue of the beautiful Mithila Review. It's my first sale to this publication, as well as my first writing sale of the new year, and I'm very pleased about it.

Meanwhile, this morning the GOP caved to public pressure and reversed its attempt to gut its independent ethics office. It's just one battle, but a heartening development nonetheless. In this uncertain time, I am all for heartening developments.
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
I am hennaing my hair on an autumnal LA afternoon. The political situation continues to evolve in alarming and surreal ways. It's shaping up to be a very strange holiday season.

I finally finished reading the wonderful Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life, which I began before the election. I'm not sure what I feel like reading next, which is to say I'm not sure what will keep my attention off of politics for more than a few minutes at a time.

I probably should be watching a lot more horror movies.
gwynnega: (coffee poisoninjest)
I am hennaing my hair on an unseasonably warm Los Angeles November afternoon.

I keep composing blog posts in my head about the election and all its possible horrible ramifications, but I seem to have too much to say to say any of it at the moment. Yesterday I got my hair cut, and everyone at the salon (me included) was talking about the awfulness of the election. Then I went to the Iliad Bookstore, and the owner was talking with customers about the international implications of the election. As they wound up their chat, the owner said, "I was doing okay, but then you started talking." I know what he meant. At least I got to see the bookstore's two cats snoozing peacefully on top of cardboard boxes, and I bought Boris Karloff and His Films by Paul M. Jensen (1974).

I keep thinking of appropriate music for the moment--songs like "Save the Country" by Laura Nyro and "People Have the Power" by Patti Smith. But the music that seems to help me the most right now is Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band (1970) and Yoko's live version of "Don't Worry Kyoko" from Sometime in New York City (1972). I've tended to prefer Yoko's more melodic work, but now it's her screaming that resonates.

not okay

Nov. 9th, 2016 09:42 am
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
I slept badly last night after learning the election results. Today I have a headache and stomach ache, and I am full of despair and horror.
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
My poetry feature is up at Postscripts to Darkness. It includes two poems ("People Change: A Love Story," beautifully illustrated by Carrion House, and "Linda Blair Pantoum"), plus an interview I did with Sean Moreland, in which I talk about, among other things, poetry and horror movies and poetry about horror movies.

The election is tomorrow. I am veering wildly between apprehension and cautious optimism.
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
The "Animals" issue of Lackington's is out. It includes my story "The Hedgehog and the Pine Cone," with a beautiful illustration by Dotti Price.

We've been having a spate of lovely autumn weather--so of course we're about to have a mini heat wave. Meanwhile, this horrific election season is almost over. I've already voted for Hillary Clinton, and I'm a bundle of pre-election nerves (but it feels like that's been true for months).
gwynnega: (coffee poisoninjest)
It is Henna Day, in the midst of a spate of lovely autumnal LA days. (Another heat wave is scheduled for later this week.) Yesterday I baked pumpkin scones (from a Trader Joe's mix), and they are delicious.

The election is three weeks away, and I'm on edge, though at least the polls are encouraging.

I'm enjoying the new Shirley Jackson biography (Shirley Jackson: A Rather Haunted Life by Ruth Franklin), which is full of amazing information, such as the fact that "Jackson tried to structure a story around a potato kugel recipe."
gwynnega: (Default)
I am so relieved and happy.
gwynnega: (coffee poisoninjest)
I voted by mail a week ago, because my polling place got switched from the convenient place across the street to someplace where I feared I'd have trouble finding parking. Driving to work I saw one polling place with a line out the door.

I have physical therapy this afternoon, and I'm glad there'll be at least one hour today when I'm not glued to Twitter, seeing horrifying things like this.

I hope Obama wins, of course, but I also hope it's a quick, clear-cut victory. This is going to be a very long day...
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
It is Henna Day on a vaguely autumnal day in Los Angeles (it's not broiling, anyway), and the wet henna is on my head. I'm still working on the finishing touches to this draft of the Jo book, but It Shouldn't Be Long Now. I hope.

George McGovern has died at age ninety. I remember watching Nixon's resignation speech on TV with my parents, then going outside and conferring with the neighborhood kids, all of whom said: "MY parents voted for McGovern!" (I also remember bumper stickers that said "Don't Blame Me--I Voted for McGovern.")

It is the anniversary of the publication of Harriet the Spy (link from Elizabeth Bear). Yay Harriet!
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
Signal boost for [profile] rose_lemberg: Stone Telling needs submissions for the Queer issue (deadline February 20th). Guidelines are here.


The Winter issue of Goblin Fruit is live!


I've been doing some research on mid-1970s U.S. feminism (for chapter 19 of the Jo book). I've made two happy discoveries: 1) I own a ridiculous amount of source material on this subject (most of which I'd collected in the '80s-early '90s but hadn't looked at in years) and 2) JSTOR has all of off our backs magazine in PDF form. I have thus been geeking out looking at the September-October 1975 issue, which includes such fascinating items as Ellen Willis accusing Gloria Steinem of being a CIA front, and the American Dental Association attempting to track down Patty Hearst via her dental records. I was ten years old in 1975, but sometimes it really seems like another planet altogether!
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
I actually heard about this today from a friend in Pennsylvania, so in case any of you in California haven't heard about it:

The California Senate is just 2 votes short to pass its single payer health care bill, SB 810 - the California Universal Healthcare Act, before the end of this legislative session on Tuesday.

Four Democratic Senators have not voted either way on this bill. Its author, Senator Mark Leno, can bring the bill up for reconsideration, as long as he knows that he has two more votes!!

Most of us have family or friends in California. Many of these Californians may not know how important it is to call and email these 4 Senators over the weekend, and first thing Monday. We can help. Alert your California contacts that they must take action right away. They don't need need to live in the districts - these Senators hold the key to all of California's health care.

The Senators need to hear loud and clear how important it is for Californians to get SB 810 passed. Call each Senator listed below and ask them to vote yes on SB 810.

The Senators who must be contacted are:

Senator Alex Padilla (District 20 - Pacoima/LA area) can be contacted
by email at
In Sacramento at 916-651-4020
Or in Van Nuys at 818-901-5588

Senator Michael Rubio (District 16 - Fresno/Bakersfield area) can be contacted
by email at
In Sacramento at 916-651-4016
Or in Bakersfield at 661-395-2620

Senator Juan Vargas (District 40 - San Diego) can be contacted by
email at
In Sacramento at 916-651-4040
Or in Chula Vista at 619-409-7690

Senator Rod Wright (District 25 - LA area) can be contacted
by email at
In Sacramento at 916-651-4025
Or in Inglewood at 310-412-0393

Single payer in California is a huge step forward for healthcare. These four State Senators hold the key to our Healthcare. Have everyone you know in California call and email them.


Apr. 10th, 2011 11:08 pm
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
Yesterday I went to the Bonaventure Hotel in downtown LA, I think for the first time since the late seventies. (I used to go there for Beatlefest back when John Lennon was alive.) I did a quick walk through the Romantic Times Book Fair, which was WAY too crowded. Then I had a great visit with my agent [personal profile] dianafox, in town for the RT Booklovers Convention. Then, when I was waiting for the valet to return my car, who should appear right in front of me but Bill Hayes and Susan Seaforth Hayes, i.e., Doug and Julie from Days of Our Lives (arguably the first soap supercouple of all time)!! I managed not to blurt out, "You're Doug and Julie!" I did think it a good omen for the Jo book. (The only soap actor sighting to beat this one was when Heather Webber and Rose Kelly [actors Robin Mattson and Loanne Bishop from General Hospital] sat in the row right in front of me during a two-act play of Plath's Letters Home, in 1983 or so. They only stayed for the first act.)

Speaking of the Jo book, this weekend I had a mini "What To Do When the Revolution Doesn't Pan Out" film festival: Sidney Lumet's beautiful Running on Empty (River Phoenix was still alive when I last saw it) and Tanya Hamilton's Night Catches Us (2010), set in 1976 Philadelphia, about former members of the Black Panther Party. I was particularly struck by how both movies show the children of former revolutionaries trying to come to grips with their parents' histories and how these histories have shaped and impinged upon their own lives.

Then tonight I watched episode one of the Upstairs, Downstairs reboot on PBS. It won me over, though now I want to play my DVDs of the classic series.
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
This morning I got up early (something I hate to do on the weekend) and drove to Santa Monica for a special screening of the new documentary, Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune. It's a great, heartbreaking movie. Ochs's music has meant a lot to me for many years, but I would think the film would have great impact even without this--as a character study, a musical history, and a telling of recent American (and world) history and protest that's all too relevant today. During the Q&A after the film, someone--maybe Phil's brother Michael Ochs?--said that if Phil were still alive today, he would be in Wisconsin.


Jan. 11th, 2011 05:10 pm
gwynnega: (books poisoninjest)
I just received an email from Barbara Boxer's office. It reads in part:

"Dear Friend:

Following the recent tragic events in Arizona, I have decided to postpone my mobile office hours, originally scheduled at the Atwater Village Branch Library in Los Angeles on January 12th, until my office has had the opportunity to consult with the U.S. Capitol Police regarding security measures that should be taken to ensure the safety of my staff and constituents at events in California. . . "

This makes me so sad. The library branch the email mentions is about a minute's drive from where I live. Not that I was planning to attend the office hours, but it brings it all so close. Until now I've focused only on the immediate victims of the shooting in Tucson--but now I see that this vicious, hateful act has also impinged upon our democracy on the most practical, local level. I hope we can come back from this.


Nov. 3rd, 2010 01:38 pm
gwynnega: (coffee poisoninjest)
I'm not happy about yesterday's Republican gains. But I am delighted beyond words that Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina lost. Delighted to say goodbye to Ahnold and hello again to Jerry Brown. (Maybe we'll even be able to pass a budget now.)

So, not thrilled about the state of the country, but happy to live in California...
gwynnega: (Default)
My long weekend has zoomed by. This evening I re-outlined the Jo book and watched a rather odd, Jo-book-related movie: Katherine (1975) starring Sissy Spacek as a doomed Weather Underground revolutionary, Art Carney as her father, and Henry Winkler as her Bill Ayers-esque boyfriend.

Last night I watched The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers (also Jo-book-related), and it was excellent. And, of course, last night I watched Mad Men, and it was astoundingly good--possibly my favorite episode of the show to date.

Oh long weekend, don't go!

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