delga: ([Random] qué?)

!!!!! Happy New Year, everyone! I woke up at stupid o'clock this morning to work an entirely pointless shift in my parents' store BUT because Yuletide reveals don't happen until America is awake, there's time to get my recs in, hurrah!

First off: SOMEONE WROTE ME SAZ KAUR FIC. It is GREAT. It is all about unravelling the numbers in her brain, which I really, truly love because Some Girls is a comedy and so a lot of the nuance in the characters is played for laughs. I think Saz gets a tough deal sometimes but I also think I'm sensitive to her characterisation. BUT THE FIC! It is so good! It nails a level of alienation that is backed up less by cultural norms (which is also a thing, but also NOT a thing) and more by personal circumstance. AND it's funny and warm and sad and just GOSH lovely Go read it: greater than or equal to (Some Girls)

Sometimes the best Saz can do is to take what she’s observed and combine it with what she’s seen other people do and try to extrapolate how she’s supposed to behave. That’s probably just how human interaction is supposed to work, only it’s meant to be subconscious. When Saz was with Joe, and then when she wasn’t, she paid a lot of attention to what her friends’ boyfriends were like. Rocky, for instance, couldn’t go five minutes without texting Viva to ask if she thought aliens had pets and would leashes still work with no gravity, and Brandon would go completely mental if he didn’t hear back from Holli right away, and whatever delinquent Holli was not-banging in any given week was sure to be slobbering after her all the time, and everyone said that if she and Joe were going to be long distance, communication was even more important, so Saz communicated.

Other recs! I actually did all my yuletide reading yesterday and I found I just didn't know most of the fandoms. So here is best of the 15 that I read.

--

Five Women Ryan Stone Met On the Road (And One Man She Technically Never Did) (Gravity/other fandoms)

The girl with the CHICAGO cardboard sign bends down to look through the opened passenger's side window and introduces herself as Cosima Nie-Holy-Shit-You're-Ryan-Stone.

THIS FIC. In an effort to deal with her mounting PTSD symptoms, Ryan takes to picking up hitchhikers. The fic includes crossovers with Sleepy Hollow, Orphan Black, The X-Files, Elementary and The Heat, and is on-point and in character. LOVELY.

(You should read ALL the Gravity fics because they are all haunting and deft and just lovely. But this is kindlier.)

--

the wine on our breath puts the love in our tongues (Frances Ha)

So she decided to call this chapter of her life spartan and minimalist. Other words for that could be empty and lonely but she made the active decision not to refer to her life at present as either of those things. Those words, she decided, could exist on the opposite side of the aisle, amidst the collection of all the things she does not have.

Frances throws a party - in Sophie's place. What I really loved about Frances Ha - apart from everything - is that Sophie is not a great friend and you slowly learn that across the course of the film. You learn it as Frances learns it, and that's cool - you love your friends regardless of their faults or they're not your friends. This fic does a great job of amplifying Frances' awareness but also that middleground you meet when it's necessary to do so. I also really love the reported style which I think does a great job of replicating a) that arch way Frances and Sophie have of speaking, and b) the greyscale used in the post-production. I can't quite explain how tone achieves that but I think you'll know what I mean.

--

#knemma (Emma)

GK
But
what happened between you and Elton?

Emma W
what
lol
it was super awkward
he was like “I’ve loved you since forever”
by which he meant Halloween
(Haz and I posted our Elementary cosplay pictures
and he went on about it, remember?)
and I was like
“what???” and “I THOUGHT YOU LIKED HAZ”
and had to block him from this account
because he kept insisting
and then he made a cryptic post in his DW
but it wasn’t cryptic enough because his girlfriend
who's not only real but has a tumblr
totally understood and started messaging me
so I had to block her too.
WTF.

GK
There’s a fandomwank report.

OH MY GOD A MODERNISATION OF AUSTEN'S EMMA THAT IS SET IN FANDOM. It's all in chatspeak, but fuuuuck, it works. I love this. Shut up. It's fab.

--

Annum Novum (The Eagle)

"Seven days you've been gone," Esca snapped, unable to contain his anger.

"My uncle forced me to stay and rest for a night, or I would have been home earlier." Esca saw now that Marcus was shuddering, with either cold or exhaustion, or both. "I am glad to be back, now."

"You're a fool." Esca stepped up close and fisted his hand in the front of Marcus' cloak, and Marcus came forward, leaning against him with most of his weight. They embraced. After a while Esca became aware that his hand was twisted tightly in the hair at the back of Marcus neck. Marcus did not protest it.

There are SO MANY "and then they live on a farm together" fics for this fandom and I love them ALL. I especially love the following: PINING; continued lack of understanding over one another's cultures; Esca worrying about Marcus' leg; MARCUS WORRYING ESCA WILL LEAVE. I also greatly enjoy reading baout their attempts at farming and the difficulties they have to overcome. This fic has all of that and is just. Yes. Excellent.

--

Former Detectives Club (Broadchurch)

"Why did you leave Scotland?" Miller is pretending to squint at the setting sun—but even sitting next to her and looking out at the harbour himself, Alec can tell she's got her head on one side and is actually peering shrewdly at him.

He sighs and leans against the back of the park bench. "I've got a heart condition", he says. "Had to get away from all that fried food, didn't I."

The best part of the show was Alec and Ellie's double act, and this fic continues that in the kindliest manner. The characterisation is spot on; I can't commend it enough.

--

Lastly, a rec for an app/site. Do you read fanfic or anything on the internet? Use POCKET. Seriously, best app I've used in ages. You can add things to it from your phone, tablet, laptop, browser etc. and read things on the go. Download quickly when you have a net connection, and then read your longfic on the go. It also has organisational features, and makes it easy for you to share things with friends. Sometimes I let out a siren call for fluff recs, and the next thing I know, [livejournal.com profile] wliberation has sent me a handful on pocket. AMAZING. Get it here: http://getpocket.com

delga: ([glee] take me or leave me.)

Another end-of-year mixtape type thing, as orchestrated by [livejournal.com profile] daygloparker. Link leads to tumblr.


it's always darkest before the dawn

track list )

delga: ([luther] i know you; i see you.)

In case you missed them, I received two most excellent Lix-related fics this year:

  • Small Truths
  • The Siege of Tobruk

    Whilst at work this week it quickly transpired I had nothing to do so I spent some time reading Yuletide fics. A smaller range of fandoms than usual, but here's what I loved from the main collection (didn't get around to mining Madness):

    21 fics (the eagle, the baker, terminator, spooks, henry vi/richard iii, push, luther, greek myth, oglaf, jane eyre and justified) )

  • delga: ([Random] full bloom.)

    After All This
    by Richard Jackson

    After all this love, after the birds rip like scissors
    through the morning sky, after we leave, when the empty
    bed appears like a collapsed galaxy, or the wake of
    disturbed air behind a plane, after that, as the wind turns
    to stone, as the leaves shriek, you are still breathing
    inside my own breath. The lighthouse on the far point
    still sweeps away the darkness with the brush of an arm.
    The tides inside your heart still pull me towards you.
    After all this, what are these words but mollusk shells
    a child plays with? What could say more than the eloquence
    of last night's constellations? or the storm anchored by
    its own flashes behind the far mountains? I remember
    the way your body wavers under my touch like the northern
    lights. After all this, I want the certainty of hidden roots
    spreading in all directions from their tree. I want to hear
    again the sky tangled in your voice. Some nights I can
    hear the footsteps of the stars. How can these words
    ever reveal the secret that waits in their sleeping light?
    The words that walk through my mind say only what has
    already passed. Beyond, the swallows are still knitting
    the wind. After a while, the smokebush will turn to fire.
    After a while, the thin moon will grow like a tear in a curtain.
    Under it, a small boy kicks a ball against the wall of
    a burned out house. He is too young to remember the war.
    He hardly knows the emptiness that kindles around him.
    He can speak the language of early birds outside our window.
    Someday he will know this kind of love that changes
    the color of the sky, and frees the earth from its moorings.
    Sometimes I kiss your eyes to see beyond what I can imagine.
    Sometimes I think I can speak the language of unborn stars.
    I think the whole earth breathes with you. After all this,
    these words are all I have to say what is impossible to think,
    what shy dreams hide in the rafters of my heart, because
    these words are only a form of touch, only tell you I have no life
    that isn't yours, and no death you couldn't turn into a life.

    --

    This easily falls into the category of shit M should not read at first light because my god, how can you possibly have a day - especially a Monday - that lives up to this? You can't. I have scuppered myself. He can speak the language of early birds outside our window. / Someday he will know this kind of love that changes / the color of the sky, and frees the earth from its moorings. There is really no point in my doing anything else today except remembering this poem and wondering why I am stuck in a goddamn office.

    delga: ([Random] catastrophe.)

    Spooks: Code 9 was ostensibly an excellent idea but turned out shit in its execution. That's no excuse, though, for y'all not to indulge in and enjoy [livejournal.com profile] hestia8's code-9 verse ficlets. There's No Way of Knowing is Lucas when the bomb detonates, and I Can Get By in the Meantime by Myself is the aftermath. Go, read; delight in [livejournal.com profile] hestia8's ever-light touch.

    --

    In other news, today was shit, and the rest of the week looks like it's going to be more of the same. I wish I wasn't such a moron about using the phone because I would get 10x more work done. This week has been two steps forward, three steps back. I left at four and then wandered aimlessly around town. I'm probably on the verge of suffering sunstroke. Joyful, joyful.

    --

    Other things: still in love with this song; I have a new book despite not finishing the others; I got carded today because I apparently look like I'm not old enough to watch Layer Cake. Yeah.

    delga: ([Random] skin.)

    Muse & Drudge [just as I am I come]
    by Harryette Mullen

    just as I am I come
    knee bent and body bowed
    this here’s sorrow’s home
    my body’s southern song

    cram all you can
    into jelly jam
    preserve a feeling
    keep it sweet

    so beautiful it was
    presumptuous to alter
    the shape of my pleasure
    in doing or making

    proceed with abandon
    finding yourself where you are
    and who you’re playing for
    what stray companion

    delga: ([my own] nora skinner.)

    Letter
    by Natasha Trethewey

    At the post office, I dash a note to a friend,
    tell her I’ve just moved in, gotten settled, that

    I’m now rushing off on an errand-—except
    that I write errant, a slip between letters,

    each with an upright backbone anchoring it
    to the page. One has with it the fullness

    of possibility, a shape almost like the O
    my friend’s mouth will make when she sees

    my letter in her box; the other, a mark that crosses
    like the flat line of your death, the symbol

    over the church house door, the ashes on your forehead
    some Wednesday I barely remember.

    What was I saying? I had to cross the word out,
    start again, explain what I know best

    because of the way you left me: how suddenly
    a simple errand, a letter—everything—can go wrong.

    delga: ([Random] got soul but I'm not a soldier.)

    You Will Hear Thunder
    by Anna Akhmatova

    You will hear thunder and remember me,
    And think: she wanted storms. The rim
    Of the sky will be the colour of hard crimson,
    And your heart, as it was then, will be on fire.

    That day in Moscow, it will all come true,
    when, for the last time, I take my leave,
    And hasten to the heights that I have longed for,
    Leaving my shadow still to be with you.

    --

    Been a while since I've read/thought of this one. Still amazing.

    delga: ([Random] got soul but I'm not a soldier.)

    Attempt
    by Elizabeth Hoover

    after Imogen Cunningham

    She had studied the art of the tea ceremony
    in Nagasaki before the war
    and said that, although technically perfect,
    she lacked something—

    the translator struggled for a bit
    then settled on sad sentience,
    but it was more—the beauty

    of imperfection, the absence
    of desire, a hint of perishability.
    Something I search for

    here on Geary Street all dusted up
    in midmorning light—jamming, shattering
    glorious in the broken windows of an abandoned shop.

    When I first started taking pictures I was terrified
    of missing things, I struggled to capture
    the haze that collects over a morning
    spent making love, tried to keep

    the thumbprint shadow under the nub
    of his collarbone. Now I consider the light
    its shifting syntax, the way the glass adds
    a playful grammar, before I swing

    my camera off my shoulder. Now he is just
    a ghost I draw through dripping fingers,
    flashes of white on the negative
    bring choked love-calls to my throat.

    If I get the angle right,
    this photo will have three layers of glass
    and my reflection nested in architectural lines:

    the machinery of my hands
    the ruin of my face.

    The quality the woman spoke of is elusive
    and must contain that which is dying
    and that which is exuberantly alive.

    She said she never achieved it.
    She stopped practicing
    after the bomb killed her family.

    Watching the film she brought I wondered
    what could I give her
    for her story
    for her sorrow.

    Why use a machine to make a bomb
    into a brilliant moon that resolves
    silently in majestic clouds?

    All around me
    perfect shadows
    balanced compositions
    go unphotographed.

    I stand here
    in this back alley
    finding not perfection
    not tranquility surrounding emptiness,

    but the memory of his face

    turning from the dark hallway
    into the bedroom where a window
    illuminates his cheekbone
    darkens his eyes.

    The light twists into an improbable arc
    slicing the frame—I let it pass.

    delga: ([2046] love is not love.)

    Du im Voraus
    by Rainer Maria Rilke

    Du im Voraus
    verlorne Geliebte, Nimmergekommene,
    nicht weiß ich, welche Töne dir lieb sind.
    Nicht mehr versuch ich, dich, wenn das Kommende wogt,
    zu erkennen. Alle die großen
    Bildern in mir, im Fernen erfahrene Landschaft,
    Städte und Türme und Brücken und un-
    vermutete Wendung der Wege
    und das Gewaltige jener von Göttern
    einst durchwachsenen Länder:
    steigt zur Bedeutung in mir
    deiner, Entgehende, an.

    Ach, die Gärten bist du,
    ach, ich sah sie mit solcher
    Hoffnung. Ein offenes Fenster
    im Landhaus—, und du tratest beinahe
    mir nachdenklich heran. Gassen fand ich,—
    du warst sie gerade gegangen,
    und die spiegel manchmal der Läden der Händler
    waren noch schwindlich von dir und gaben erschrocken
    mein zu plötzliches Bild.—Wer weiß, ob derselbe
    Vogel nicht hinklang durch uns
    gestern, einzeln, im Abend?

    --

    You Who Never Arrived. )

    delga: ([raines] I see dead people.)

    Concerning That Prayer I Cannot Make
    by Jane Mead

    Jesus, I am cruelly lonely
    and I do not know what I have done
    nor do I suspect that you will answer me.

    And, what is more, I have spent
    these bare months bargaining
    with my soul as if I could make her
    promise to love me when now it seems
    that what I meant when I said "soul"
    was that the river reflects
    the railway bridge just as the sky
    says it should—it speaks that language.

    I do not know who you are.

    I come here every day
    to be beneath this bridge,
    to sit beside this river,
    so I must have seen the way
    the clouds just slide
    under the rusty arch—
    without snagging on the bolts,
    how they are borne along on the dark water—
    I must have noticed their fluent speed
    and also how that tattered blue T-shirt
    remains snagged on the crown
    of the mostly sunk dead tree
    despite the current's constant pulling.
    Yes, somewhere in my mind there must
    be the image of a sky blue T-shirt, caught,
    and the white islands of ice flying by
    and the light clouds flying slowly
    under the bridge, though today the river's
    fully melted. I must have seen.

    But I did not see.

    I am not equal to my longing.
    Somewhere there should be a place
    the exact shape of my emptiness—
    there should be a place
    responsible for taking one back.
    The river, of course, has no mercy—
    it just lifts the dead fish
    toward the sea.

    Of course, of course.

    What I meant when I said "soul"
    was that there should be a place.

    On the far bank the warehouse lights
    blink red, then green, and all the yellow
    machines with their rusted scoops and lifts
    sit under a thin layer of sunny frost.

    And look—
    my own palm—
    there, slowly rocking.
    It is my pale palm—
    palm where a black pebble
    is turning and turning.


    Listen—
    all you bare trees
    burrs
    brambles
    pile of twigs
    red and green lights flashing
    muddy bottle shards
    shoe half buried—listen

    listen, I am holy.

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    delga

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