Sunday, October 31, 2004

Samhain

We are all born naked.. Everything else is drag. -- Ru Paul

At least that's close to what he said. As I write this I am preparing to go into ritual. Tonight I am the Winter king. I am preparing to fight and kill the summer king! I will than take over! I plan to freeze you all out and to create utter chaos for the land. I am dressed up for the occasion. I have an aged white face and grey and silver hair tonight. If I can get a picture of me that is not flooded with white I will send it to the Mirror Stage.

Tonight is the night where the veil between the world of the living and the world of our ancestors is the thinnest! Tonight I remember my Papa Butz, Grandma Rene, Papa Harold and all who have past on in life. This is the feast of the dead.

halloween2

me in costume3
me in costume3,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
Me in costume minus hat after coming back from the evenings festivities...

halloween

halloween3
halloween3,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
The West Owl Relic and I on our way out to a party and the Rocky Horror Picture show...don't we look cute??

Friday, October 29, 2004

Between Flesh and Glass: Autoeroticism and Narcissism

Between Flesh and Glass: Autoeroticism and Narcissism

I have declined to write specifically about the problematic relationship with women that Freud exhibits in his writing simply because I feel this aspect has been explored very well by many of the greatest feminist thinkers and in order to even make an attempt at saying something not totally redundant I would have to reread a great volume of work to re-familiarize myself with the state of analysis and the argument as they stand. Instead I wish to explore the concept of the self that lies within the assumptions and aporia that Freud employs in his description of narcissism and “objectless” libidinal “aim” in the context of infantile sexuality and autoeroticism in general.

In what is perhaps the most controversial tract of the works on sexuality which we have examined, Freud characterizes infantile sexuality as autoerotic and narcissistic, at the same calling it “objectless”, presumably therefore pertaining only to the realm of the subject. But in the light both of the problematic central to Freud’s schema of desire and of the writings of Lacan on the Mirror Stage, we come up against a fragmentation of definition of the autoerotic, both in adult and infantile sexualities. Desire, aim, libido, we are told is masculine in nature, that is to say active. Leaving aside the problems of gender running throughout this work, we may wish to consider Freud’s concept of the active aim. The aim being active is in this schematic inclined to seek out its object, which is passive in nature. However the object itself is said to be actively emanating and creating the seductive power that draws the one who desires in towards it. This then shakes up the passive/active dichotomy considerably.

If we extend what we have gleaned above to the particular situation of autoeroticism we find yet another nexus of interpretative trouble, a “knot” to borrow Lacan’s favoured term: the love of Narcissus is that of the self for the imago of itself, and thus, in fact, the other. It is in the location of the image of the self beyond the fragmented limits of lived experience that constitutes one of the primary sited of desire, it is true but desire projected on the imago therefore most definitely has an object: the image of the self. Furthermore we see that the imago is phallic in nature…it forms the basis of the mirage of the self as complete, and consequently provides another instance of the phallic other, and this is in itself primary because of its relation, its “Echo” if you will, of the status of the phallic (M)other. The phallic, or in any case the complete, occupies the basis of our linguistic economy perhaps precisely because it constitutes the conceit on which we build our selves and on which we form our desire of others, and the relationship between the two. Thus the mirror image and the mirror stage is much more than the perceived cohesion of the fragmentary personhood of the pre verbal infant…looking into the mirror in fact constitutes an entire drama of desire and signification. Therefore we may quickly see that if the eroticism of infants is to be found in narcissistic tendencies Freud’s statement and its nature as object less is quickly annulled.

The only locus then for a truly objectless desire, if we are to understand “autoeroticism” at least on such terms as Freud provides us with, would thus be found in the infant prior to the mirror stage, whose concept and awareness of the body is without imago, or in a parallel economy of desires that figures throughout our lives, for if we are to take Lacan and Freud at their words, after 18 months there can be no place for the fragmented personality, and thus no place for the truly object less desire, the autoerotic, if we are to understand the term as stated above, and yet Freud posits exactly such a desire as central to the eroticism of infants. Much of the richness of Lacan’s approach to psychoanalysis is to be found in the tension of contrast, frustration and contradiction within the split nature of actual lived existence in relation to this desired phallic other that is the imago. Naturally if such a tension exists, despite the mirror, the child, the image and the mirage the fragmented self does persist. And then it is perhaps this persistent aspect of the pre mirror stage self making a sensual response to all it’s disparate parts that forms the autoerotic as defined by Freud. Whether actual autoeroticism is acted and perceived of in this manner is open to debate, but one thing is clear: if this consciousness does persist in dreams, the subconscious and indeed in autoeroticism it constitutes an alternate mode and model for desire, and a key into an alternate language of self and the erotic. It is perhaos this moment of jouissance that we think of when we contemplate a diffuse sexuality that stretches beyond the body, just as the pre mirror stage child has no sense of a break between himself and others its needs in this continuum (I avoid “desire” in this context) are also perceived as spread beyond objective limits. Although Freud seems convinced that it is women who are sites of repression, and retrograde in their development along the developmental teleological axis, it is men, also according to Freud who retain the same object and aim in their desire from infanthood into manhood, once the drama of the mirror and that of the oedipal attachment are enacted, and arguably before. However it may be in readdressing the content of that desire which so eludes Freud both in women and in men, the autoerotic, and the erogenous, that is to say the polymorphous perverse, that we may arrive at some alternatives in our approach to the complex truth of sexual and sensual experience and some destablizing alternatives too in our modern quest to construct ourselves in light of same. Somewhat macoronic though it may be: In masturbatio veritas, perhaps.

Monday, October 25, 2004

"may you never" from Solid Air

this is an audio post - click to play


My gift to all of you...john martyn singing a beautiful thing with a heart full of love...if you hear a funny wooshing noise in the background it is my warm air heating going on during my recording of the blog...consider it *character*.

Also, trying to inspire you to all run out and buy lots of John Martyn cause he's super cool and should not be neglected.

X

theorama...martha, courts and foucault

The Sexuality that is Not One (Part 1):
(with apologies to Irigiray)

In a film in which the words “lesbian” or “homosexual” are never uttered, silence, that great semantic hold-all, reigns and the meanings of the terms rumor, speech, silence, friendship, and gender are all subtly and systematically destabilized, in ways that inform the understanding of issues of sexuality contemporary with the film and which continue to be part of the current debate. While it is true that “The Children’s Hour” is a piece of fiction, albeit one masterfully wrought, and the records of jurisprudence to which we have been turning our attention in the latter part of this week are within the realm of the factual, there are two important reasons why it may be helpful to re examine this film in the light of these readings, besides similarity of content: firstly, this version of the film adhering as it does to the original form of the play, lies alongside the records of supreme court trial in the realm of the textual, joining a narrative that “is embedded in the founding of the nation” and engaged in informing he discourse. Secondly, in that the film represents events as contemporary with its making, and the judgements of the cases of Griswald v. Connecticut and Roe v. Wade occur within 25 years of the time in question and challenge legal precedent that far precedes them, the outcome and comment of these court cases speaks directly to the theoretical context within the film was produced.

So, for the purpose of this response, I shall take from these cases a few salient points to use as tools with which to prise apart the seams of meaning in the film. As we have discussed in class, abortion law has a relevance and resonance in the formation of both “persons” and “sexualities” and the link between these two terms that will become evident. Firstly we may note that Griswold V. Connecticut explicitly states the collapsing together of acts such as adultery with the “homosexuality” under the umbrella of “sexual misconduct” which “the state forbids” and frequently uses the term “mother” to indicate “woman” or “pregnant woman”. This may remind us of the recurring theme of Karen’s desire for a baby in the film, where having a baby immediately becomes of the utmost importance in the moments before she evicts Joe from the sealed off house. The house by this time in the film has become a site of contagion, where the “filling” aspect of pedagogy becomes a locus of dread as the hold of moral hegemony is threatened by the potential transmission of a miasma of alternatives to the cemented borders of the implicitly heterosexual, or indeed non-homosexual, meaning speakable, episteme. The house is bordered by a patrol of the seamier side of the heterosexual norm from the moment that it is seen to signify the edge of the heterosexual world, and it seems that in this place that has lost its purpose, that is significantly barren, the promise of productivity, of fecundity is the last desperate sign by which Karen may still cling, or struggle her way back into the heterosexual norm, or less rigidly, to the productive doctrine of the nation and the state, to remain a woman, and therefore a mother… an option which she has seen as safe and familiar. Joe’s ambivalence in the matter persuades Karen that although he may profess otherwise, (the average) Joe’s feelings and views of her have changed, that in his eyes she has indeed fallen out of the norm to which she once belonged. This it would seem is compounded by the fact that Karen knows herself to have been changed by this process, and that her understanding of normality…of words like friend, and woman is changed now and forever.

More than this however, the Griswald v. Connecticut case deals specifically with the legality, limitations and status of the private sphere, an area very much relevant to the plot of The Children’s Hour, where the ostensibly private becomes public through the whispered secrets of children at the heart of this pedagogical struggle. The judgement simultaneously privileges the marital (and therefore heterosexual) bedroom as the realm of the private, a private which is conceded not to be specified in the bill of rights, and yet undercuts the implicit premise that the state and the private individual are opposed by the insistence of the “interest” of the state in both the “mother” but more especially in the maintenance of the “unborn child” (n.b. as opposed to fetus/embryo, and with all the doctrines of potentiality that are contained within and to be “born(e)” out in Roe V. Wade). As stated above the context of the film implicitly runs into issues of transmission of knowledge, and the link that therefore must be seen to be presumed between knowledge and carnal knowledge, the sexuality of the teacher/student relationship. The private sphere as discussed in Griswald v. Connecticut is SPECIFICALLY said to include freedom to choose modes of education, a choice which as Poovey and others argue is necessarily limited and false due to the unequal availability of said choice/ It is interesting to note again that this privileges productivity and heterosexuality…indeed I would argue that one of the main reasons that the subject of gay marriage remains so hotly contested is that it essentially casts members of what is seen to be a gay “class’ in the role of educator and producer, and just as in the past the “homosexual” teacher (as in the Children’s Hour and the case of Marjorie Rowland and Mad River as outlined in Halley: “The Construction of Heterosexuality” in Fear of a Queer Planet) has been ostracized to an extent that would persuade against identifying outside of the heteronorm, today with the prospect of gay parenthood, the destructive consequences for heteronormative mores are taken seriously enough to warrant continued prejudice, Both in society and under the law.

In The Apparitional Lesbian Terry Castle argues that the apparition, the insubstantial state to which the unutterable and belief defying woman loving woman is relegated can be viewed not simply as a victimisation, and just as Goldberg would seek to reclaim Sodom, she seeks in the end to use this penumbral (cf. 14th amendment discussion) manifestation to create a fruitful way of opening up the canon to the excavation of a lesbian literature. This in many way is at once an acknowledgement and an unsettling of the “out” “lesbian” identity, and shows the paradoxical nature of the act of naming in the case of an essentialist equating of sexual “orientation” and personhood, ( as defined in the discussions in Poovey’s article). This too is the nature of the suicide in The Children’s Hour: Martha finds herself outside the heteronormative realm of the person, and consequently finds that her only recourse is to abort herself, to die and thus enter the only alternative space open to her, that of death, where she too may become an apparition.


(PART 2):
“Your existence will be maintained only at the cost of your nullification” (HoS p.84)

In the first section of this response piece I discussed the film “The Children’s Hour” in the light of the court cases of Roe v. Griswald and the articles of Mary Poovey and others. I ended by discussing the space which Martha occupied in the film with regard to what has been referred to as the “heteronorm”. In this section I wish to discuss the limitations, layout and shape of this “heteronorm” with reference to the first volume of Foucault’s “History of Sexuality”, to confuse and problematize the monolithic entity of “heterosexuality” in particular (and indeed “sexuality” in general) into a multifaceted continuum, a sexuality which is not One. De-unifying the box of the normal may perhaps be seen as particularly important for those engaged in the battles taking place in jurisprudence, and those in social movements seeking to overturn the “status quo” but my task here is not to form a single-bladed weapon (with all the phallic connotations that implies) of response to a monologic monstrous (the word at it’s center being the name of the Father) entity which would indeed not slay our proverbial dragon…it is to show how Foucault’s arguments on the pervasiveness of power through sex enable us to destabilize these categories within the limits of our own epistemic realms, the limits of a society which may well be that on earth which is most steeped in its own ”ars erotica” in the form of a “scientia sexualis” that now runs through it like a stick of rock. Because, after all Foucault’s argument is that we are that dragon, and all of us have the power to slay it (at least for ourselves, or in part) and also to breathe its fire, or perhaps that there are as many dragons and as many blades as there are loci of power, and thus sexual encounters. In order to destabilize our reptilian friend, our “heteronorm” then, we must in fact induce in it a multiplicity of “petites mortes”.

One of the chief points made by Foucault and others arguing for the discursive creation of “sexuality” and particularly the division between and creation of “hetero- and homo- sexuality” is that it is the reification of deed into person. And this conclusion is particularly interesting when comparing it to the analysis of Halley as discussed above; one can quickly see the limitations of an assumed group, the depth of fear of the “homosexual” perhaps relating to the very fragility of the content of the “heterosexual” identity, the fear of the latent and unspoken heterogeneity within the category itself, a heterogeneity that threatens to implode the neatness of normative assumptions. Thus we may outline the nature of the discourse that creates these “sexualities”: essentially because heterosexuality is an assumed norm although it is restrictive, in many realms it need not form itself directly against an object so that it is indeed, as we have seen above in the analysis of the “Children’s Hour” the indictment to silence and latency that categorizes it in general societal terms, just as the indictment of law as outlined by Foucault is the negative (“thou shalt not”), and not the act itself, and just as the construction of “gayness” or “queerness” in recent years seems to have been more based on the speaking, the naming, on “pride” in this discursive speaking of the person, and consequently creation of the other…the “non”. It appears then that in those sites of the enactment and transference of power heterosexuality, that is, the constructed “norm” must in some way privelege “the other”.

This is much the argument of many in the field of Postcolonial studies, and borrows from the Foucauldian notion of the eroticism of the speaker, the sufferer or victim within this episteme, and here we run into one of the difficulties in Foucault’s text. Although we may acknowledge that the confessional, and the space of victimhood are erotically charged, they are thus as a consequence of the imbalance of power, or perhaps vice versa which one could extend as the systemic replication of the inequalities in that first erotic exchange, the oedipal moment. But since it is the case that these powers are constructed as unequal, and since Foucault makes no claim that repression, that is the effects of certain powers believed to be operating within these spaces does not/do not exist then the net result, the psychic harm induced by this albeit constructed and forged process must also be seen to exist. An example of the gap in logic thus created in Foucault’s writing would be his story of Jouy, the mentally deficient peasant seeking sexual satisfaction from a child. We are led to consider it pitiable that this man should be penalized for his simple desire, but there is little point in lamenting the condemnation of the action…for although it is the nature of sexuality and of desire that relationships of power in sexual encounters should be unequal, the continuum of pleasure or harm induced to the individuals engaging in sexual relations is no less real than the inequality of power itself. Perhaps if our ars erotica were a different one this factor would be less in play, however the nature of desire at the base of our culture being what it is, I fail to see how there could ever be a utopia of bodies and pleasure in which inequality of power and the nexus of potential pleasures and harms therein inscribed would cease to exist. Foucault’s utopia would be a desire-less state, and without desire which pervades even our onanistic fantasies, whither pleasure?

To return to our reptilian analogy, what we find is that the relationship between the norm and the other is indeed complicated, because neither remain fixed. As Foucault argues, they exist in fluid clouds that condense at points of power interface, sex being one. But it is still fair to say that in those moments our actors take on their unequal mantles of power and that these, though they may change depending on circumstance, must also be considered in terms that relate to the lived experience through which Foucault arrives at his revelations, as he himself seems to point out, we cannot throw off power and nor would we wish to for each of us has it, but I believe we must also take into account the relationship between these valences of power in their different fora in order to truly use the power that is ours for our greatest benefit and pleasure.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

valentine1975

valentine1975
valentine1975,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
this is a cool image from the Residents website that i stole, sort of, on instigation, I might add, of the west owl relic, and now I am posting it here, because I am trying to avoid doing work. You can view it on my flickr site by clicking on it.

All Hail...

...the new "Desktop Despot", Will is now second in command blog administrator!!

HOORAY!!! Congratulations to Will!

So if you have any problems you can direct them at him...I'll just take the praise, thanks.

Anybody else interested in admin let me know...all it means is that you can invite people on to the blog, and you can edit posts and do other editing type stuff...so if any of you have secret html skills that I don;t know about, I'd be grateful if you let me know...I want emoticons and flashy shit but I don't know how to put it on!! Take care darlings!

Sing Your Life!

XXXX

Song of the Moment...

this is an audio post - click to play


Feeling lonely...so ease it with Billie Holiday singing from "Lady in Satin".

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Life in the Freezer

Listening to the Pogues...

It has rather suddenly become freezing here in Cambridge...my hands are still kind of cold and stiff even though I got into my apartment about an hour ago after spending three hours doing face painting at a Haloween party run by Harvard for local kids and Harvard families. Volunteer work...it was fun, but tiring. All these kids painted as vampires and witches and skeletons and stuff running about eating peanut butter and Jelly sandwiches.

Now I have tonnes of reading to do.

Last night I walked home at 7 from the Harvard Yenching Library in near pitch darkness with a howling wind and was shocked at how quickly winter has come. Although it's officially autumn it's pretty much as cold as it gets at the height of winter in London right now...especially with the wind chill. The wind blew me past a cold and formidable looking William James Hall and down the street trying to tug on my yellow scarf, and me tired out from jet lag and sadness, and a lack of sleep as I had been up late when The West Owl Relic came and stayed wih me Thursday and we watched Delicatessen. It reminded me that I had David Attenborough's "Life in the Freezer" series with me which Will bought for me as a gift before I left the Uk. I remember squatting down by the nature videos in the HMV sale debating what we should get, and then sitting at home snuggling up with him on the bed smoking a fat joint and watching penguins strangely hopping up hills of snow. AMAZING. I feel a bit like one of thos penguins at the moment...doing something I have to do but feeling awkward and somewhat ill adapted to it. I wonder if there's a patron saint of penguins I can pray to...

Spending this weekend catching up on work, so I don't wear myself out with worry...Will write some theory here by the end of the weekend. Foucault and all that. Looking forward to seeing posts from all our fab new members...I love it that the ranks are swelling!!!

X

Friday, October 22, 2004

All Along the Watchtower

There must be some kind of way out of here
Said the joker to the theif
There's too much confusion
I can't get no relief
Business men they drink my wine
Plowmen dig my earth
None will level on the wine
Nobody of it is worth

No reason to get exited
The thief he kindly spoke
There are many here among us
Who feel that life is but a joke
But you and I we've been through that
And this is not our fate
So let us talk falsely now
The hour's getting late

All along the watchtower
The princess kept the view
While all the women came
And went bare feet servants too
Outside in the cold distance
A wild cat did growl
Two riders were aproaching
And the wind began to howl

Thursday, October 21, 2004

msn virgin

So I just had my first msn messenger conversation...and it was one of the members here who deflowered me. I won't name no names.

Back in the USA after the whole funeral ordeal. I will write in detail about it later. Just wanted to check in and say a special hello to all new members...Love you all!!! Enjoy, and get writing...you blog virgins have got to do it some time.

XXX

song that is the poem below...have a quiet listen...and contemplate!

this is an audio post - click to play

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

(a)wake

I was going to write about my Gran's funeral, about the wake and the whole thing...but I don't know if I really can.

It was good to be around other people who loved her drinking guiness and toasting a woman who was so much full of life and help and kindnesses. And in the end that's how I want to remember her, all her good qualities, not the box and the crying. I haven't again found that serene place I had discovered before where I felt her walking with me, but with the maelstrom of oher things going on, the good and the bad (mostly painful) it's not suprising really. I'm hoping that that will change. Wish me luck and stay in touch, I need it.

X

Sunday, October 17, 2004

poem for you from Joni Mitchell

yellow2
yellow2,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
Just before our love got lost you said,
"I am as constant as a northern star"
And I said, "Constantly in the darkness
Where's that at?
If you want me I'll be in the bar."
On the back of a cartoon coaster
In the blue T.V. screen light
I drew a map of Canada
Oh Canada
With your face sketched on it twice
Oh you are in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet
Oh I could drink a case of you and still be on my feet.
Oh I would still be on my feet.

Oh I am a lonely painter
I live in a box of paints
I'm frightened of the devil
And I'm drawn to those that ain't afraid,
I remember that time you told me, you said,
"Love is touching Souls"
Surely you touched mine
'Cause part of you pours out of me
In these lines from time to time
Oh you're in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet
Oh I could drinka case of you
And still be on my feet,

I met a woman
She had a mouth like yours
She knew your life
She knew you devils and your deeds
And she said,
"Go to him, stay with him if you can
But be prepared to Bleed"
Oh you are in my blood
You're my holy wine
You're so bitter, bitter and so sweet
Oh I could drink a case of you, darling
And still be on my feet
I would still be on my feet.

Joni Mitchell "A Case of You" (from "Blue")

Saturday, October 16, 2004

loose ends again.

Sitting at home still in my pyjamas. One of those day where I''m not going to be able to make it through anything...too down. Just reading. Out of cigs too. What a drag.

Leaving on Monday to go to my Gran's funeral. No signs or noises from Will. Generally not good, all round.

Spoke to sme friwnds in the UK, cause nobody else was answering, and it helped, but not enough.

Going to try to say awake. Been sleeping pretty much allday. Not a good sign.

mmmmmmm.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Libidinal Economy and the Episteme

There is something else that unites Lot's wife, Martha, Polathene Pam, and Sartre and that is the issue of choice. Lot's wife chose to take a peak behind her. Martha was free to hang from a rope. And nobody forced Polathene Pam to swap her pantyhose for britches. But does the authenticity that Sartre insists upon have to end up in an ending of tragic hyperbole in order to validate its existence from the very start?

Just last night in the final Presidential debate the issue of "choice" came up once again in relation to that most slippery of all slopes: the "homosexual." But in a country with such an insideous antipathy towards the "other," I really wish that the Hillbilly Texan and Massachusetts' Herman Munster would realize that we are all the "other," whatever our episteme....

Icarus is listening, but feels like falling...

Rope, salt and plastic: the escape artist(s) [for Icarus' perusal...I told you I could do it!]

When the character of Martha in the film "The Children's Hour" (1961) hangs herself after admitting to her friend and moreover to herself the romantic feelings she has harboured for her, the implications of speaking the unspeakable have overwhelmed her. Finding herself outside of the episteme of her identity as constructed previously she is in a new land where the compass and map of her life prior simply do not apply. She looks down, back, perhaps on the lost/found city and ceases to be a "person" in the sense she has known...like Lot's Wife she turns to a pillar of salt. It is the great out, the great escape...the final hoorah and also the final cry that she becomes the apparitional, aborts and voids herself,perhaps as a default mechanism of her social sense to her strange new mental environment, but she also does the great disappearing act, becomes a puff of smoke, a stream of vapour to revisit and reappear as a homosexual martyr or a bit of Genesis in the table condiments. Looking down on Sodom, Lot's wife did the same, looking back on an option closed ostensibly forever she ceased to be human, and instead became a symbol that has a longer life than she would have done as "Wife of Lot".

As we have discussed in class, suicide for sartre is a last site of power. I generally think not. The forcing to die or to live as defined by the episteme at large is surely presenting the life/death struggle in binary terms,, and besides which in reality death will only result in perpetuation of same...there are many valences, many frequencies and paths not explored. But in the cases above mentioned, in instances already within the parameters of the discourse, a fictional death as petite morte, as sublimation must be seen in all its terms...and reclaimed, indeed torn from its simple designation as an instance of victimisation, or a failure to cope. These things will help us make ou new mythology.

Speaking of the petite morte, of orgasm and sex brings me to the final flip of our artists of trapeze and escape...because the gender of Martha, the nature of her person as a woman, as a feminine, as the possibility of a lesbian all speak to the paradoxical relationship between the above mentioned presumed binarism in sexual charge. "Opposites attract" after all, or so we're told. but the whole dis stabilizing potential force of pluralised sexuality is in heir shaking of this concept out of its cookie cutter. For although gay men continue to be defined in terms of the "top" and the "bottom", and the lesbian is still shoehorned into the dichotomies of "butch" and "femme", the nature of desire, the truly anarchic base of desire is to be found in the growing and admixture of various components of all and every group we may say. However, even these ideas of the diametricaly opposed feminine and masculine roles and their conceptualisation in popular culture and pornography can easily be distabilised...after all, Polythene Pam was "so good looking but she looks like a man". What is desired we may posit is drag, a dressing up to a fantasy of the feminine that is in fact the phallus and nothing less. Martha is our heroine here, because she cannot conceive of herself (with all the meaning that entails) inside the person she once was, not simply because she escapes from the person she now feels she is as a consequence of her perceived reorientation of her sexual geography. It is that she will cannot and WILL NOT pretend that nothing has happened, she cannot and WILL NOT continue to live within a libidinal economy which she has seen the working parts of and has stepped outside...she will not dress in drag.


Monday, October 11, 2004

Reflection of the Mirror Stage

I feel compelled to lift the curse.
I'll tell my tale tonight in verse.
They call me the West Relic Owl.
My sophomoric rhyme scheme makes folks scowl.
I write to have a little fun.
Careful not to make a pun,
for if I do it costs me dearly.
She'll charge me 13 cents each, nearly.
So hear I am just back from work.
No longer can I simply lurk.
Tonight I aim to fill the page.
Contribute to the mirror stage.
If all who read my simple rhyme
would each just take a little time,
The magic of this blog can grow
beyond all limits that we know.
So come and be part of the magic.
To keep silent would be tragic.

Friday, October 08, 2004

WATCH OUT....

THE PARENTS ARE COMING!!! Arriving soon to disturb a peace near you, ready to shift your schedule around at will and make you feel that you are missing out on a whole bunch of things, or not doing all you should...GUILT!! PLEASURE!! CONFUSION!! IRRITATION!!! They are all in store in this special offer! Act now!! ACT now!

yes. They're here. Well not yet, but they're in the country. Ashtray has been safely put away, and the apartment is in the process of being given a good clean and censor. Actually it's kind of fun when they come...for a couple of days. My mom is going to be staying with me monday night it seems which is really nice, though she didn't let me know until just now, and it messes up my dinner plans with Icarus. much irritation on that front, my planz has been RUMBLED!!!

Ah Well, I shall have to indulge in some retail therapy (NM here we come) to get me over the whole thing...(after all its SO onerous, I can barely stop feeling sorry for myself, being aken out for dinner, and away from my work...DRAMA...It may occur that I have very mixed feeling about seeing my parents...this is not an illusion...it is the case.)

I have CDS winging their way to me from Amazon.com///my brother gave me a gift certificate for my birthday, so I am finally getting The Frenz Experiment, one of the only Fall albums (not including Live albums...that would just be silly) that I don't own. Also some Morrissey, seeing as all the Morrissey I had in London really belonged to Will (like all the Joy DIvision, Cure, New Order, Depeche Mode, Talking Heads etc. sniff sniff, not to mention him making off with all the Hank Williams) and he has consequently absconded with all of it, leaving me sadly nearly Morrissey free, with nothing to swing flowers about to.

OK OK OK

I'm calming down now. I have a belly full of the fudge cake that THe West Owl RElic made for me and carried to work and then to my place last night, with many precarious near misses and potentially disastrous happenstances. And running for the train, with the cake in hand. He even put red glittery sugary sprinkles on it, and he brought 23 candles!! And I blew them all out in one go!! WOWEE. I shall finish the "parent safe-ing" of the apartment, do a bit of reading and get some rest.

Wishing you all good things,

although if somebody doesn't start writing soon I shall cry! TAke note!

love

X

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

grreat

grreat
grreat,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
getting birthday cards, electronic or otherwise makes me feel...GRRREAT!!

XXX

happy birthday...

...to me!?!

Thankyou so much those of you who sent me ecards and cheered me up in these first few hours of my birthday while I'm working away, and actually forgetting that it is my birthday...thanks for reminding me! The West Owl Relic called me at midnight on the dot so he would be he first to wish me a happy birthday, which was very sweet, but some of you weren't far off, simply because I happened to be checking my email before going to bed at FIVE TO THREE IN THE MORNING. Which is what it is now here. My birthday is going to be lovely class and supermarket...nothing exciting I'm afraid. I'll probably knock back a few and takestock in myself, and do some more work, it'll be fine. I have some really good news...firsly a set of 1910s oak drawers I bought from a little antiques store in Iowa or something arrived today. I bough it over the internet, and it looks FAB and fits in my bedroom perfectly. The other really cool thing is that it looks like I found a little studio space in a cute gallery that runs classes and poetry readings and stuff near my house, and its affordable, and hopefully I'm going to take it. I kind of needed a turn around on the luck front. It's been exactly one week since my Gran died. It's so weird to have a happy event come right after a sad one like this. I know she would want me to stay positive though.

Incidentally, I've also joined the Graduate School women's Group council...I'm so bleeding civic minded.

yesterdayit was gorgeously sunny but really crisp and cold and I did some errands and hen came home and made myself some cornbread, which is I think exactly the right thing to do in weather like that...BAKING. It was satisfying, and I have a little golden loaf that I'm gradually shaving down and trying with all different accompaniments. I discovered a genius combination this evening...take on slice of cornbread and cover with thin slices of norwegian Gjetost (slightly sweet brown goat's cheese...it looks scary, but tastes OH SO GOOD, trust me)and toast unil cheese is soft. THen DEVOUR while sitting sprawled on a sofa reading "the Apparitional Lesbian" and contemplating your good fortune. That is the recipe of the evening.

so...

"Why don't you write me I'm out in the jungle I'm hungry to hear you...send me a card I am waiting so hard to be near you-oooo, owoooooo." that's what I say to those of you who I haven't heard from ina while. And to all of youwrite somethingon the blog, for goodness sake, people will think you are all my imaginary friends!!!

love you all,

XXXX

It is still my birthday, so I'm adding on to this post to say an extra special thankyou so much to Icarus who brought me two delicious lemon poppy seed muffins this morning...did they remind you of the sun you are trying to reach??

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

"I finally broke into the prison...

...I found my place in the chain"

So I found out that my grandmother had a totally different history to the one she told and covered herself in like a security blanket. She married one man only, a merchant Navyman from Newfoundland, to whom she was married in 1949, I believe and to whom she was still married in 1989 when he died. And we never knew this, or met him. She was never married to her policeman, not that that matters, and she had no daughter. She had no daughter who died tragically. Her father was Frank Long, not Frank Cousins.

She constructed this mythology of herself as we all do, in one way or another, and I don't know that she didn't believe that it was all true. She seems to have been slightly "dillusional". But the thing is,,,I love her more for it. I am so glad I know this now, because I can know her better, and that makes me feel peaceful, not fearful, and filled with guilt about mistakes that I have made. She is more human to me now, I know she made misakes too, it helps me to remember her compassionate nature, and feel reconciled with her...And what a spinner of tales she was! Wow. I have to say I find her utterly remarkable, and I wouldn't have her any other way. She was truly unique, and she will enter the pantheons of all the mythologies of the lives that she has touched, I know that for a fact. I love her.

In the end she allowed me and those she loved into her world on all levels, wheher she wanted to or not, in a kind of postscript fashion, the "factual" and the "fictional" and this, though in some ways traumatic is perhaps the same baptism of fire we all go through in order to achieve intimacy. The journey through the view of the other by means of the story of the self...

"...Into this furnace I ask you now to venture, you whom I cannot betray"

Take care all of you, and get writing you lot... I'm cracking the whip, babies! I want to hear what you are thinking too...this isn't designed to be virtual onanism...I have a livejournal for THAT!!

lots of love.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

yummy fur

is
is,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.



I found a yummy fur image. My fave teenage band live on...memorial starts here.

sefiroth

sefiroth
sefiroth,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
look at this...wowee


click on this image to get the full picture, it is beautiful and you may find truth within.

at the zoo

hello all.

I am glad that I already have a fairly healthy contributers list...now get writing! Anything, nothing, fag ends, poesie, gossip...bring it on babies, and don't be shy, everyone here is friendly and supercool otherwise they wouldn't have made it onto the guest list.

I am obviously still in a funk, and I will be for some time, I think, but its great to hear from you all whatever you feel like writing...

I am writing from my desk in my new aparment, where a small black bowl of water to the right of my key board is being a home to two little yellow flowers I brought home from meditation class yesteday ( I have started meditation class), I met The West Owl Relic in Harvard square and we walked to my apartment with these flowers behind our ears as I went of on a grand tirade about the american political system and as we walked Harvard Yard was bathed in violet shadow.My head was hazy and I felt like a ball of paper being kicked along in the general languid flow of movement, the orbiting that was happening there as people strolled beneath salt lights.

Things have been beautiful here, I just wish my Gran could be here to see it. It makes every beauiful thing sad at the same time...the impermanence that makes the world sucha fresh beautiful place to be and the change that makes friendship soulful and enduring seems to me to also be at the heart of the pain in the world. But it's all par of the same thing...that is what I have to conclude.

I want to say that I'm OK. I am sad and shocked but I'm OK.

I love you all very much.

Will post again soon.

Please email if you find any problems with the Blogging system,

XXXX

staring into space

staring into space
staring into space,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
ok so here's a picture of me in my new flat, not that you can see much of it. You'll recognise the lamp, thos of you that have been to 47B St. Paul's Rd. when Will and I were there. I will post more interesting photos when I have the energy

pensivetroll

pensivetroll
pensivetroll,
originally uploaded by SiRen65.
What to say What to say. Thought you all migh like this image of moomintroll. this Flickr thing, which lets you post photos is super cool...you've got to try it. I shall put a picture of me on the next one.


this is how I feel when I'm having to write my homework response paper...hmm...I've read 100 pages of theory about "the nation" how the fuck am I going to condense it down into one page, late alone have reasonably coherent strategies for class???