philosophy

The Queen of Nineteen Trebles


Speed Painting: Medieval Castle by NatMonney

The Queen of Nineteen Trebles

Over Dwyrenland held sway

And Heimlenholm and Ruddland

And many more to date

Yet, “My kingdom for a sceptre”

She oftentimes would say

And none did understand her,

So grand as she was vague.

For she had a crown of moonstones,

And the mountain leopard’s cape

And in her right hand firmly

Shone the sceptre of her state. (more…)

Undergrounders


Lost, they seemed like neighbours

Sometimes odd in manner, yet

We saw them as sharing in our mix

Of foibles and humours.

What did they hope for, here?

Suspending all their visions

And locking safety away

To fall asleep in a world not their own

Lit by the rude incandescent

Grey with sameness and waste.

What did they think of us, then?

As they strove to eat as we ate

To test the waters for their ideals

And, sensing rebuff,

To secure the lines of escape.

Even today, I cannot comprehend

The disappointment of four centuries,

And as many awakenings;

Nor the abiding hope

That saw them living among us

Only to be chased down sewers

By the latest elite in soldiering.

Once off, I admired their masks

Relics to be auctioned now that

They’d fled deeper than Onkalo

Below their barricades.

Elizabeth Cook, 2016

Image from tommo at 28dayslater

Parallel Outlet: 10


Stars peer from behind curtains of daylight

Wishing upon my brief passage

Calloused sole alighting

Softly

Maybe it is the daydreams with which this poem opens. Maybe it is the stars.

Sand and Solitude, from The Memory of Trees, invites me into a world where more varied lights hang in the sky, and where long moments leave room for myriad small things. In the sand I don’t see the beaches or the dunes of Earth today. I’m imagining a less tangible place, where everything is different and yet everything is the same.

It could be the future – it could be the past. It could be nothing more than a fantasy. Where is the sand that you would walk upon?

That slow hour, high noon

Where time passes relative

To the pace of my thoughts

~

Image from artofsaul

The Loidial Trade in Medium-Sized Domestic Animals


An excerpt

Unlike the cosine, which has grown tarnished and shriveled with the oxidation of centuries, the Law of Large Numbers (LLN) has kept remarkably well. As I crept through my apartment over the course of the next few days, expecting a black and orange and mud-coloured assault at every step, I recited the Law to myself.

The LLN states that, when one has the results of a large number of trials from a sample that is representative of a given population, the average of said results should be close to the expected value of the population entire. This sample average will tend closer to the population average as more trials are performed. Since the average number of humans killed or injured by klars per Old Earth Lunar Year (OELY) in the past few decades was precisely zero, and this constituted a good number of trials, the LLN would have me believe that I was safe. I should have gone forth boldly, and stopped slouching so much.

But under these circumstances – as close as I thought I would ever get to experiencing the antique ‘horror’ genre, in which I have precisely zero interest – it was difficult to convince myself that klars had not simply been saving the lives of the same number of human as they killed every year, thus ensuring a neutral profile for the species entire. Having an invisible beast with untrimmed, inch-long claws in one’s living quarters has this sort of effect.

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The WeIrD World of Lalantree


…[he] sometimes pretended interest in my cosine functions. Namely, the ones which were plotted based off of his burnings. Because he really just wanted to talk about himself, and I remain deeply disturbed that we once snogged for upwards of two minutes.

Somewhere, in a galaxy and a future far, far away, Lalantree is running a grumpy commentary on the weird world she lives in. Most of the people there seem to be inoculated against absurdism and they enjoy cushy existences, unaware of Lalantree’s scathing inner dialogue.

Not that it would matter much if they knew what she was thinking.

Last time she was sitting in on an abnormal chair burning. Now, on the e3groupblog (where people whose names begin with E have colonized a pinprick of the internet) she is relating how she grudgingly acquired a pet.

She herself probably won’t thank you if you read about her latest adventure – but I will!

Even if statistics couldn’t tell us how to establish pronoun-equality, so that we might move on to the ideal gender-neutral terms for which social scientists wept, it could tell us that if we alternated between x and y for the foreseeable, infinite future, things were practically equal.

And practically was good enough.

Above quotations taken from the five-part story: A Chair Burning, and an Unfortunately Outspoken Girl

Parallel Outlet: 9


Star Citizen, game, space simulator, battle, sci-fi, spaceship, screenshot, , 4k, 5k, PC, 2015

“We are almost there,” I say but everyone else around me says “bah” because they do not have the mental capacities of someone who has lived through three centuries and a couple of nightmares.

What will sentient beings look like in 500 years from now? 1000 years? The narrator of The Starlight Gate has me wondering from the very start.

She seems to be somewhere far out in the cosmos and is speeding towards an end that we cannot really understand. She is made of metal and flesh, but in what parts and measures? I wonder about the universe around her and the notes of cynicism that I hear in her voice.

I relate well with introspective characters, and Eric from Walls of the Underground is continually showing or hinting at other worlds through introspective voices. Even in dialogue there persists an air of intimacy.

This results in some tantalizing bits and pieces. If you are in the mood for short stories, take a look at Walls of the Underground.

“Goodbye, I enjoy abandoning you as much as you don’t.”

Costumes


She wore her clothes like costumes. Outfits were made up of what she thought she ought to be wearing, and this constantly wavered. It made her constantly temporary.

And it wasn’t unusual for her to get the look wrong. She’d make it 90% of the way to hipster, or business casual, before falling into the uncanny valley. Maybe this meant she was as uneasy in the role as she often looked. Maybe she simply wasn’t aware.

On the one hand, it meant that she was just as comfortable on Halloween as on any other day. On the other, the only way she knew how to make an impression on anyone was to manufacture and then confound their expectations.

Unsurprisingly, she didn’t get to know anyone.

*

Elizabeth Cook, 2015