Bunny wars

I thought I had an arrangement with my yard rabbit. The arrangement being, she can eat all she wants in the yard as long as she stays out of my garden beds. Well she has broken our unspoken agreement. She came with the house, so to be fair, she was here before me, but she’s not the one paying property taxes either. I love seeing wildlife in my yard and I expect some losses.

Sunflowers are a problem. Every year I try to grow them, all different kinds, and every year they snip those seedlings right off. So apparently sunflower seedlings are quite tasty. This year I decided I’d outsmart the rabbit. I got clear cups, cut the bottoms off, and put them around each place I buried a seed. So I have two sunflowers growing out of oh, twenty or so. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Which is more than I’ve been getting. One of the two grew from under another plant, without the cup, so I’m pretty sure it was just missed. Some of the cups were not even disturbed.

Momma bunny is a good momma and has been having her babies in my flower beds. So I get adorable baby bunnies hiding out in my flowers and eating everything in sight. I think they are actually the sunflower thieves. I looked for her nest a few weeks ago but couldn’t find it. So last week I went to water the flowers and watered the babies. They went running every which way. Most of them stayed in the cover of the plants but one little guy ran into the yard. Then he froze. So I picked him up to put him back in the bed where he’d have some cover and he screamed. I don’t know if you’ve heard a baby bunny scream but it is awful. As soon as I put him in the garden bed he went running into the plants so he was safe and I felt like a horrible person. Momma bunny usually doesn’t pay a bit of attention to me, but she was in the yard frozen and giving me side eye hard. I apologized profusely. They were teeny babies, like just a few weeks. I found her nest up under the rose bush

I can chalk up the flowers as a loss. It’s frustrating but come on, baby bunnies! But, around back I have two raised vegetable beds. She usually doesn’t touch those, but this year she or her babies have been helping themselves to anything I put in there. So I lost all my melons, cucumbers, calendula, borage and tomato from one bed. The other one just has tomatoes and they’ve left that one alone. I grow everything from seed, as I like heirloom varieties, and I had some late seedlings since she ate the first batch. I put them out yesterday and today one of the two is snipped right off. So I still have one.

I just came in from watering plants. I’ve made a barricade around my brave little tomato seedling. I think it’s a black cherry tomato. I’ve gotten pieces of garden fencing and put them around it. The tomato cage is over top of it also, but that was already there. The fencing is flimsy but for now that’s what I can do. I’m thinking of making a little moat, and sharpening some twigs for an abatis. I could really geek out on this, but I should probably just let the bunny win.

Now, the squirrel digging up my pots is a different story.

Happy Memorial Day if you are in the US

Fever dream horror
Burning eyes and warped wishes
A djinnโ€™s rage released
Cargo woke early
Jade tendrils questing from pods
Void the transport bay
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Penumbra Literary

Happy Friday! I hope everyone has something good planned for the weekend, whether it’s going out or just relaxing. I haven’t been inspired much lately but I’m working on a post for later today or this weekend.

For now, my poem ‘Feral’ is included in Penumbra Literary’s Spring journal, and can be read online, page 47:

Penumbra Literary Journal

I received a contributor’s copy and am impressed! It’s beautifully put together and has many talented writers.

Finally, a couple of scifi and fantasy haiku! ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t know if you guys like those or not.

Certain rips in time
Where cyan skies slowly churn
Parallel worlds merge
A mage and a djinn
Cruel wagers through centuries
Mortal lives as pawns

Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to those that celebrate it. I hope it was a good one.

If your mother is gone, I hope you got through the holiday. My mother died right before I turned eleven, but I miss her to this day. I don’t think you ever stop missing your mom, no matter how old you may get. My grandmother died the year before last. She was 92, and it was Covid that killed her. So I was kind of down today. That was part of the reason any way. I’m also having a bitch of a time with my knee and not being able to do anything it really wearing on me.

I saw an orthopedic surgeon last week. He gave me a shot in my knee and ordered some more detailed x-rays. The shot helped a little bit but not enough. From the first x-ray, there’s arthritis and some other stuff going on in there, but they also suspect foreign bodies in there. So I think that’s what the more detailed x-rays are for. I have bone spurs in there and it’s possible that one broke off. Or more… they said multiple. I go back to see the Dr next week.

My crow has been visiting me daily. I want to post video but wordpress won’t allow it. So here’s a quick one I posted on twitter:

Zoltan

Yeah I’m kind of enamored with my crow. ๐Ÿ™‚

My recent depression has me somewhat in a writing rut as well. I have several poems that are partially written because I became dissatisfied with them. There are numerous publications that I’d like to submit to this month, ones that are only open this month, so I need to get my shit together. So, I need to get busy and finish the ones in progress, send a bunch of stuff out, follow up on one or two, and start some new stuff. In between every day crap.

My online shops have been doing crap lately, so I’ve been spending a lot of time working on updating them. I let them go for quite a while, but now they need tending. That’s one thing I’ve done some of pretty much every day. Redbubble hooked up with teepublic so now I have a site there too, and all the listings need to be edited for teepublic. It’s a pretty damn big task considering how many listings I have. But I’ll just do a few at a time and I’ll get there eventually, right? Bills still have to get paid. ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh I had a poem come out last week but I don’t have a copy of it yet and it’s not been posted online yet. I’ll share it when I do. This is about it for now. I hope everyone has a great week! Below are a couple of scifaiku.

An unsettling wail
Lost interstellar ghost ship
Now just an echo
Life in cyan seas
Tentacles and reef farming
Language in colors
Scifaiku

I have not been inspired by the horror haiku prompts recently, but the scifi and fantasy ones are usually fun. ๐Ÿ™‚

New Fever Ray produced by Trent!

Mom

Fantaiku/scifaiku

enchanted mountain
a villainโ€™s captive princess
knightโ€™s quest to free her
80s time tourist
Jelly shoes and copper hoops
Synth pop in the clubs

I’ll do a proper post soon. Hope everyone has a good weekend!

Acceptances and Rejections

I am super stoked about my recent publications. Strange Horizons and Space & Time are both magazines that I thought were probably out of my range, but I figured I’d give it a try. So if you are doubting yourself, remember that all they can do is say no.

Now, just to keep me humble I had a couple of rejections as well. I tend to not write about those. ๐Ÿ˜‰ There was one I wrote about being short listed for a while back. It was Fantasy Magazine and I was super excited. They held it for seven months. However, I just got a rejection. They were very kind and said they liked it but were limited by cost and had to cut down on work that they otherwise would have purchased. So all in all I don’t feel too bad about the rejection, but I am disappointed. I love the poem in question and had hopes they were going to take it. I used to pick up issues of the magazine in Barnes & Nobles back before amazon killed the bookstores. So next I thought I’d send it out to Fantasy & Science Fiction Magazine… I have a whole shelf full of those and have been reading them since I was a kid. If I had to choose the most prestigious fantasy/scifi magazine my guess would be them. I sent it out and they rejected it in a day. Oof. I am not sure where I’m going to send it next. I think it’s a good one and I want to find a good home for it. I am waiting to hear back on another submission at SH, so that one is out for now.

I have another one coming out in the next week or so and will post when it does. That one is at Penumbra Literary. I have a couple of other acceptances but I don’t know whey they’ll be published. I am not sure how everyone else does it, but I spend quite a lot of time researching markets and trying to match up things I’ve written with markets I think they will work at. I keep a database in excel to keep track.

In other news, I believe I need knee surgery. I have to go see an orthopedic surgeon. I am really frustrated with it and tired of it hurting so much when I walk. I’ve been looking for houses up around Hunter and visited him a couple of days ago. Without getting into it, I am no longer moving. Unfortunately they are far too expensive around here so it appears I’m stuck where I am for the time being. So I have to hire some people to do some work around here, which super sucks.

Today I’ve been forcing myself to limp around the yard to get some plants in the ground. It’s beautiful outside, but I can’t do any more. It hurt like hell but I am so sick of not being able to do anything. I’m paying for it now. This is it for now. I hope everyone is having a good weekend.

A couple of scifaiku below!

My nemesis leads
Tracks through crimson desert sands
Racing third moon tides
New world survey notes
Lead oxide ash from grey skies
Barren of all life

Strange Horizons

I’m excited to say that my poem ‘Cinderella’ has been posted at Strange Horizons!

Please go check it out and let me know what you think. ๐Ÿ™‚

Cinderella

In other news… I’ve told you about my crow buddy, Zoltan, and his girlfriend Zelda. I’m pretty sure she’s nesting. So anyway, the past week I’ve started giving him fruit – cranberries and raisins. He will completely ignore the peanuts for the fruit. ๐Ÿ™‚ And I started putting it out in my hand. He was understandably leery about this, but yesterday he took it from my hand, and again today. I know it’s silly but it makes me happy that he’s learned to trust me enough for that. He immediately jumps back like he thinks I’m going to snatch him, but progress.

Of course my phone was full so I didn’t get it recorded. I’ve been taking videos of him but didn’t get this one… maybe next time. I’m trying to clean it out the phone a bit.

I have more but this is it for now. I’ll write more soon.

Wanderlust

I am restless and want to travel. It’s been quite a while since I’ve taken a proper trip somewhere and I miss the adventure. The issue is that I need someone to go with me. When I was younger, before I became disabled, I wouldn’t think twice about going to third world countries by myself, even when I should have. I would have preferred to have someone to go with but I didn’t want to not go because I didn’t. I was never afraid of it and that lack of fear got myself into some sticky situations. I’m still not afraid, but I am a little more cautious and I’m a lot more aware of my physical limitations. The first time I traveled by myself after I became disabled I was made painfully aware of them. A million small things became issues for me. And I always liked to travel semi-rough. I liked to do volunteer work or take adventure vacations where I had a lot of flexibility to go off and do my own thing. I guess I could hire a private guide but that gets expensive. I think that’s what I may have to do though. I keep trying to tempt Hunter or my cousin but they aren’t as enthused about traveling as I am.

I want to go to festivals across the globe. I want to go to Holi in India and Carnivale in Rio and Midsummer in Sweden. I want to see the aurora borealis from a glass igloo in Finland and see Petra in Jordan and the desert in Namibia. I want to try ayuahasca in South America and peyote in the American southwest. I want to swim with dolphins, learn how to scuba dive, and see synchronized fireflies in Tennessee. I want to volunteer with orangutans and elephants and every other kind of animal. I want to listen to new music, new languages, new environments. I want to learn about snakes and insects and butterflies.

I feel like I’ve wasted so much time. The ten years I spent married were a nightmare and I resent the time I lost. I resent how much it set me back. But I’m trying not to. Part of that is to try to make the most of the now, and what time I have left on this planet. I need to improve my health before I can do a lot of those things. Anyway.

My knee has been messed up for the last two weeks. I finally got it x-rayed yesterday but I don’t see the Doctor until next week. I’m just hoping I don’t need it operated on. Next week I’m going to look at more houses around Hunter. We’re getting a room with a jacuzzi and I’m bringing loads of bath bombs. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I think I’m looking forward to that more than anything. lol

I don’t have anything new to report on writing. My work in Strange Horizons, Penumbra and Space & Time will all be coming out in the next week or so. I’ll post links when they do. There a few new anthologies that sound interesting listed on horrortree so if you haven’t checked recently you should. ๐Ÿ™‚

Books.. I ended up putting ‘The Drowning Girl’ aside and moving on to ‘The Pallbearer’s Club’ by Paul Tremblay. It’s really good! I’ll be finishing it up tonight. I’ve liked everything he’s put out so far. In this book, a high school boy starts a club as a way of getting extracurricular activity to put on his college applications. The club is to attend funerals of people who don’t have anyone there and to act as pallbearers. He meets a quirky young lady and the two become fast friends. However, all is not as it seems. The book is told as if he’s writing a memoir and she is providing commentary after each chapter. It’s about the effect this girl has on him and their relationship throughout his life, as they intersect on and off.

Here are a few haiku I wrote for twitter prompts. I hope all is good with all of you.

A broken crypt lock
Terrified by lurching tracks
No signal from home
Springโ€™s tidal cycle
Islands swept bare with the moons
Like Earthโ€™s tsunamis
A mythic book found
Backwoods ritual gone wrong
Lost in a green fog
Cold river of Lethe
Creeping panic as I drown
Memories erased

Spring and Writing Catch Up

Zoltan just left. I hadn’t seen him for a few days and I didn’t see him at my door at first. He started cawing at me to announce himself. Usually Zelda is with him. She used to just sit in the tree and he’d bring her food, with her bitching (cawing) up a storm the entire time, but she’s gotten much bolder and now will come down to the porch railing. She still bitches a lot. ๐Ÿ™‚ She doesn’t get as close to me as Zoltan. While he gets in touching distance, she is not having it. I imagine the entire time he’s so close to me that her caws translate to “Get away from that human! You don’t know where it’s been!” Yeah my mind is kind of a strange place. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m thinking maybe Zelda is sitting on a nest. I am not so secretly hoping for crow babies to be brought to meet me.

I keep wanting to upload video clips but WordPress won’t allow it. One of these days I’ll get a real website. I should do that soon I suppose.

I got a contract back for Penumbric, and the editor told me that it will be at least a year until publication. They have issues scheduled out that long! I’m expecting Space & Time to come out soon and will post when it does. That one is a hard copy magazine though. I think Strange Horizons comes out in a week or so and Penumbra should be coming out soon also.

It’s Spring and I am busy growing stuff. We had some erratic weather so unfortunately the first plants I got in the ground got frosted and at least some of them did not make it. Others are still struggling but it’s not looking good. I’ve been looking for houses also but the market SUCKS right now if you’re looking. There is nothing around here. There are some around Hunter but not a lot in my price range, and that’s a long way from here. It’s a big step and I have a lot of thoughts churning. I have never been lucky in love.

Books. After I finished “Tiamat’s Wrath”, I read “Video Night” by Adam Cesare. It was a fun read of 80s nostalgia and alien horror that had a few issues. Perhaps I’m holding it up to too high of a standard, but I loved his book “Clown in a Cornfield”. For a while, I did not read Clown because it just sounded so cheesy. And it is.. but it’s also a fun read that I tore through. I think Video Night came out before Clown. It seems like an earlier novel. Still a good read but not as polished as Clown. I want to read Clown 2: Friendo Lives, because of course he does. ๐Ÿ˜‰ After Video Night I started “The Drowning Girl” by Caitlan Kiernan. It has not grabbed me so far and I’m thinking of DNR’ing it and moving on to something else. It’s not like I don’t have scads of books waiting to be read.

I shared an anthology call I came across on twitter – prose, poetry and art, that benefits shelter pets. I usually see anthologies listed on horrortree.com, and I saw one recently that sounded interesting. It was A Necronomicon – RomCom mashup for a Necroromcom. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I think I’m going to enter that one. This is it for now.

Below are a couple of horror haiku.

traveling salesmen
snake oil and fetid tonics
sideshow death dealer
a strange tidal wave
towns submerged and cloned creaturesย 
Leviathan hunts