Bumming around

Waiting to go to my friend Vinny's house for a Shadowrun game. Should be sweet. Merge sort haunts me; I got it working with threads, yay! Now I have to implement a lock and a global variable to control how many threads are out there. So...only a little bit of coding and a LOT of debugging away. I'm trying to get ahead in homework for this week so that I have to do as little as possible while my girlfriend is here. Still, I think she might just see that my life here is all homework, and very little else. Like, sure I'm going to Vinny's this afternoon, but I'm also bringing along English reading and my Digital Electronics textbook to get my boolean logic homework done. I mean....

Also, although it's cool that when you search for "merge left wikipedia" the first result on google is merge sort @ wikipedia, I kind of wanted to not deal with that today.

Poem? Yeah, let's put a poem up. This is the "rebel sonnet" (see earlier post if you're confused) that I actually turned in. I'm not satisfied with the other other one yet. Perhaps later. Anyway, Blue-Black Bell by That One Famous Poet:

my subject
is Death. it rings blue
in reflection, some object
split into bite-sized pieces for this stew
my sometimes-mine lover is
making. she's alright.
beauty truly is not all there is,
and there is truth in this sweet repose of endless black night...
Death's faceω haunts me. it's true, i'm uninspired
by the women in my life, and fully willing to discuss my own
surely impending death – after all, life is just a journey from placenta to pyre
and who are we to doubt the soft feel of life's nightgown?
can we truly question a life torn from blackened ember?
when the blue-black bell for my last hour tolls, i wish to be thinking of Her.

ωThe concept of Death can be pretty scary, but
Gaiman told me she's quite a babe.



So, I'm implementing a merge sort in C for my OS class. The spin is that it has to use threads, specifically the pthreads library. It also has to be able to be limited in the number of threads it can use. I've gotten the first part done, figuring out how to do merge sort with pointers. I had made a text file to be sorted the other day, and just threw a bunch of stuff in there that came to mind: excerpts include "boy", "girl", "ping", "stuff" and "romani". Pretty stream of conscious. One of the things in there was "tux!"

When I went to test the program for the first time, I figured I should take a quick look at the text file. I switched "tux!" to "tux" just in case some weird error happened. My program happily sorted the file. So then I went and switched it back. No problem. Then I got curious. What happens if I give it "tux" and "tux!"? It was ordered just like that. So that got me thinking, "Wow, I wonder what the ASCII ordering for punctuation marks is?" So I typed in "tux," "tux." and "tux?" as well. When ordered, that small section gave me my poem for today's Gedichte des Donnerstags.



Rebel Sonnet failures (or rather, near misses)

I'm guessing the next couple of posts will be poems that I tried to write for the "rebel sonnet" assignment, which is a poem that remotely has anything to do with the sonnet form but makes choices to avoid the form in other ways. This means...just about anything. There are a variety of interesting ideas that can come. One of the most famous "rebel sonnets" is Terrance Hayes' Sonnet:

We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.
We cut the watermelon into smiles.

Mine is much worse. This is the rebel sonnet that I like least. We'll probably do 2 or so more of the four or five different poems I wrote, and one of them will be the poem I turned in. This is Hip Hop,:

Hip hop,

Please don't ever stop
Lovin' us as much as we love you,
We keep you alive
You keep us movin on through
To better days, as long as we strive
To beat the breakbread breakbeat
Of 9-5, in every way.
We abuse you, sweet
Woman, use you, and I know there ain't no way
You ain't out grown your birthplace.
We don't wanna, but we gotta unchain the leash, let go the lease
And let you get a taste
Of the freedom in pure release.


Sam Devine

There’s a man
Who walks this streets
Drinks our blood
As easily
As wine –
Sam Devine.

My mother always told me
“Beware the beaten path:
Beware the friendly strangers
Who watch you from their hats.”
But I have found
The underground
And the lesser marked trail
Hold greater tears
And greater fears
And many more deadly tales.

There’s a man
Who walks this streets
Drinks our blood
As easily
As wine –
Sam Devine.

It was in broken twilight
Down the dark alley I ran.
A bag of groceries in my hand
My source of fear a man.
He followed me,
His eyes were full of red.
His skin was pale,
His hands were frail,
He looked as if one dead.

There’s a man
Who walks this streets
Drinks our blood
As easily
As wine –
Sam Devine.

And if he catches you, my friend,
Take a bullet to the head.
‘Cause when his teeth your bloodline prick,
You’d better off be dead.



In progress:


Empty my chest cavity than open up,
Cut wrists – fan blades on low, so slow,
So stop-start – than reach out-connect.
Leave this in silence: I have plenty to say, I just ...
Can't think in time to your rhythm, syncopated
Against the grain, words cut bare,
I always walk home in silence.
I always climbed trees to get off the earth,
Like a bird with clipped wings.



This is the poem I wrote for the blank verse assignment that fell over the weekend I went to Morris.

We wake to leave this town we slept in, two
Days lost to adventure. The war is done,
For now. Vinny sleeps beside me: bright sun
Too much for eyes not used to squinting, and
The plains give no cover from light of day.

Détente is fought on streets that stand empty –
The trenches dug in muddy snow banks, in
The mall with copy printer paper signs
Read “FOR LEASE,” in the coffee shop, at home.

The people of the town hide in their homes
On the days we are there. They fill up Don's
But are gone by the time the students rise.
An Ag-town, these people work their own farms,
Run their own shops, raise their own children, but –
We come and bring chaos, riotous smoke,
The sound of laughter at 4 a. m.

The battle starts quiet: someone runs past
With bottle in hand, a scowl is heard
And the soft curve of a police cruiser
Is seen rounding the block – no lights, not yet,
And as the party waves to the car with
Their ruddy, smiling faces, “Carry on”
Echoes weary across the space.

And, moving *away* from my personal life...

I'm currently writing a poem in my head about falling bricks instead of doing my Electronics homework. This poem is about actual falling bricks, not tetris. Although that would be pretty cool.


My dog has 4 bumps on her abdomen. I have a large spot on my arm.

There are three moments in my life when I lost my innocence. I can remember all of them vividly, and they hurt just as bad now as they did then.


Getting ready for more shell coding.

Every time time my hair gets long enough to get a haircut, I revisit the question of whether I could grow a pony-tail and have it look good. Meh.

Also, this shell is really complicated. Like, I knew it would be, but holy crap. I'm getting better at using vim, but I feel like this is just something I have to use for years.

Got bookcases today with my folks. We spent the entire day with eachother, it was really nice. Got breakfast at Baker's Square, and then we went to Ikea and looked at bookcases. It took forever, because I had no idea what I wanted when I walked in, so we left at 3:00 in the afternoon. Went back to my apartment, put them together, and cleaned a LOT of stuff. I think you could call me "moved in" at this point. The bookcase looks wonderful, much thanks to my parents for that.

Still looking for something to do this summer. I've got 3 things to apply for in the next month, hopefully Libby either gets back to me at some point or I can talk Shilad into doing it. I tried applying for things this weekend, but my advisor (Libby), failed to provide me with my needed second recommendation, so I couldn't even finish the apps. :(

I've started writing a bit more, went back and revised some hb stuff today; I'm trying to explore the limits of two-man more. I think I'm slowly reaching it, like, the limit as awesome approaches infinite of two guys making punk music.


Hope and the Voice Now Risen

This is the inauguration poem I wrote for my class assignment.

We have doubts. Let them be laid to rest as
We have laid fathers, mothers, sons and daughters;
We have not buried hate, though he is our Caesar,
We have not struck the knife through the whole
Of prejudice, of inequality.
To reach this day, we have triumphed; the fight
Was long, the war not yet won. Hate is sly:
It is not a villain to be faced head on,
Equality must be lived, justice must be breathed
Deep into our lungs. Breathe deep of the day.

Deep into the night we often sink, let
Others be bygones, grace these ghost sounds with
Silence... but silence does not raise a hand.
Silence does not speak up at hate and fear –
Silence is complicit. Our eyes have seen
Terror, our mouths have cried "Once!"
Our ears have heard "Enough."
One nation, still divided, stands before
A yawning chasm, of gnashing teeth, meat
And shadows. Dark falls on our windowsills,
Dark falls on our hands at work or at play,
And the beast still seeks to swallow us whole,
To drown us in darkness.
We must not falter, fall to old judgments,
Unless we pay the price, lost to a sea
Of doubt. Sly hate. If we do not stand together
We will not stand much longer through this night.

Dawn is breaking red, read upon its lips
Is not our destination. No. We see
The path we have to walk, and hope.


I realize that I forgot to post yesterday; I have a poem ready on my Linux side, I'm currently booted into Windows. I was sick for most of yesterday, so I have a good excuse. I'll get it up by sleepy time tonight.


Spring is coming, I can feel it in my veins.

A ripe old age, Just doing the best I can.

It takes me a long time to like new music. That's not true. What I mean is, it takes a long time for me to get used to a band that I like's new music. For example, Float is very different than Flogging Molly's other albums, and, although I enjoy listening to it, I had to get used to it at first, and I still don't always listen to it when I listen to the others. Another good example is Somewhere in the Between by Streetlight Manifesto - it has a very different sound from their other albums, and although I liked the album, I didn't like it with their others, it felt out of place. Listening to the discography on shuffle finally solved that problem, but still.

It comes down to experimentalism. I really really would rather bands not sit on their laurels and pump out the same music they did before over and over again, and almost all bands are actually incapable of doing so; some are, but they're special. I would never be able to not be affected by the growth or lack of growth, or whatever is or isn't going on around me enough to not change my music somehow album to album, much less day to day or show to show. Everytime I play my music, I think, I could do this differently, or, adding a fill here would make this better, or, this song would sound good with multiple tracks.

The best example of a band that experiments would be either: a) Sonic Youth or BBB. The former is notorious for their strangeness and experimentalism, and BBB is a band that goes from being a hardcore band in 2005 to a hardcore band with an "aeriel keyboard" as they put it in 2007, and now they're just fucking weird. I don't always like what they play, but they're trying different stuff, you know?

I've started playing guitar again, I haven't been for a couple weeks, due to the start of school, the vagaries of life, etc. There are certain things I want to get better at before I start writing music again though, just to create a variety in my work. I'd hate to listen to myself for an entire album. Or even 1 song. How do you do it?


Back in the cities! Wooo.

I'm back to the Cities, in my apartment. I'm very sleepy. It was nice seeing everyone though! :) I had a good time. I'm going to play a little WoW, call my girlfriend, and go to sleep. I may write a poem for homework, or start it at least, before I pass out, but then again, I may not.

I got home and discovered I had left my coffee machine on all weekend. Whoops.


Gedichte des Donnerstags

Tasha wanted me to write a poem.
Right, I said, slowly, drawn out the way you
draw out a line when you aren't sure what to
do with it. Or where it's getting to.

She said, where is your poem for today?,
As if the day owed her a song. One bit
She could bite into on her way to bed,
Broken before breakfast bridges night to day.

"Wake up and write a poem": awakened is
What I am every moment, from sun rise to
Noon tides to chest rise to breath out;
Awake is asking what the day is for.

The day is for revealing your ace, so show 'em:
Here's an unrhymed sonnet for you Tasha, a poem.


Day 9: Sleepy

Today's been a weird day. I woke up at 8:30 to shower and then go to class, got home at 1:30, ate lunch, and promptly took a nap until 5:45. Then I got up, ate dinner and went to Olin Rice for my office hours. So it's been a weird day. Now I'm talking to Vinny on the phone.
Breakfast: Cheerios and milk.
Lunch: Turkey burgers.
Dinner: 2 chicken sandwiches.
Cups of coffee: 0.
Cups of tea: 2.


Day 8: food!

Today was sad on the food front. I needed to go grocery shopping, so excuse my pretty terrible list.
Breakfast: 2 eggs over medium. Water.
Dinner: 2 turkey burgers. Yum yum yum. And oj x2.
Cups of coffee: 2.5.
Cups of tea: 0.
Workout: going now!!! :D

I have a lot of possible poetry pieces floating around in my head. It's nice being back in a class, it helps channel the crazy that's usually just about my head, like a fog.

Days 6 and 7

Day 6: Carleton
I went and visited Danny in Carleton this day, so unfortunately I haven't exercised since last Thursday. :( But such is life. Did a lot of homework.
Breakfast: Cheerios and Milk, Orange Juice.
Dinner: Lasagna and Salad.
Cups of tea: 1.5
Cups of coffee: 0.

Day 7: Never Better
This was a long day. Up at 9 for class, in class until 1:00, then class again at 7 until 9, and then the Never Better release show at midnight. I was working on homework pretty much the entire time too. The only time I wasn't doing class or homework was right before the show playing halo at David's.
Breakfast: Orange juice. We're out of milk....
Snack: Dehydrated cherries. <-- not as good as I'd hoped. =\
Lunch: Chicken breast sandwich meat (bread went bad) and cold pizza. Yum. I <3 cold pizza.
Dinner: Ham and Brie sandwich from Dunn's, as I'm pretty much out of food and really hungry. I'm also trying not to eat pig products, because they're actually quite smart creatures and they get raised in really shitty habitats for butchering, but ham is hard to avoid. Pork I've done a nice job of though.


Poet didn't doubt defiance, now he droughts deadly

I had to write an inauguration poem for my Poetry class today, which is quite the task; I was extremely intimidated until I remembered I wouldn't be reading my poem to 6.some billion people immediately after a speech by President Barack Obama. After that I just sat down and wrote that shit. It started out not meaning to be anything. I think I'm going to put it in for workshop, but I dunno, because we only get like 4 chances for workshopping our stuff. I have something that I definitely want to put into workshop written mostly in iambic trimeter; I like it but I think it needs a bit more of something. I dunno. I'm bad at gaugeing (...sp?) people's reactions to my shit. Hence why, instead of wanting to hear "I liked how you used this symbol..." when I ask if you liked it, I want to hear "yes." or "no." or "it was terrible. how could you write something THAT BAD?" If you got that hidden joke about md5 sums or w/e, cool, rewarding, but if you didn't like it anyways, I failed, no?

Anyways, I'm not going to post either of those yet, instead I'll give you something I didn't like at first -- I'm still not sure I like it. W/e. It needs work, give me a hand?

This last day awards us some compliance
With our wishes – we have hoped for summer
While deep in winter's grasp.
Family let me be ... prosody has not.
Fuck. I can no longer think without hearing,
In addition to the former beat, the the stupid
Up and down of peasant strove to artist.
Pleib to faults, I find myself stuck, not -
got you there -
Sisyphus, but rather crushed, West Virginian.
I speak not form your voice, from your weary lilt
That seeks to speak from sleep a sounder silence
To fill that former beat full fury. To leave
What's left, from left to right, to reader's gaze –
So frightful. I can feel nothing more frightful.
January has exited.
The world spins faster every year
And I can't even deal with timing laundry,
How can I find my way?
What could February begin to say
To make me bare my pen and ink?


Mo' poetry.

I still don't really have time for drawing much, so here's more poetry for tomorrow's update instead. I'll just post poetry to make up for it, as I actually have time for that. I also have to write for a class, so there. Anyways, here's a poem I discovered in my notebook from last spring that I took a scalpel to (as opposed to a chainsaw or an axe), in order to bring it to its current form. It's not "finished" per se, but almost good enough. don'thearit is a possible title.

Music on the radio
I don’t know it
But I drum to it
Like how you
Don’t know the face
But you come to it
I come to see it
You don’t hear it
I don’t hear it
I have to feel it
Feel it like a trickle down your back that actually trickles,
Not that trickledown policy that pops pus like pimples,
No, this is an honest-to-God Death’s head in a broad sickle,
It slices my spine the way it comes, dying’s just a tickle
And then it’s just pictures in the way back and I smile.
The face on the other side of the counter says it’s been a while.