Tumgir
#excerpt
crimsonkismet 23 hours ago
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饾櫚饾殲饾殣饾殲饾殰饾殱 饾煼饾熁, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煾 饾殐饾殤饾殠 饾櫝饾殥饾殜饾殯饾殥饾殠饾殰 饾櫨饾殢 饾櫟饾殯饾殜饾殫饾殻 饾櫤饾殜饾殢饾殧饾殜, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煻 -饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煿
[ID: August 15. Wasted day. Spent sleeping and lying down. END ID]
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good-as-dead 10 months ago
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x / Landscape With Fruit Rot And Millipede, Richard Siken
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heartpome 11 months ago
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from Loneliness: coping with the gap where friends used to be by Olivia Laing for The Guardian
[Text ID: Last night, I ate dinner with my friend Jenny. In real life, on a warm London evening, forking up aubergine from the same plate. We laughed, shared family news, told each other the things we鈥檇 been worrying over. At home, alone in my study, they鈥檇 felt insurmountable, a sign that something was irredeemably wrong with me. Under the gentle scrutiny of my friend, they diminished to a normal size: just the grit of everyday traffic with other humans. I walked home feeling buoyant, nearly invincible. I need my friends. I bet you need yours.]
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sweatermuppet 5 months ago
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from why poetry can be hard for most people by dorothea lasky, published in rome
[Text ID: why poetry can be hard for most people. because speaking to the dead is not something you want to do. /End ID]
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fernreads 2 months ago
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The Supreme Court handed down a decision on Wednesday which effectively gives Border Patrol agents who violate the Constitution total immunity from lawsuits seeking to hold them accountable.
Justice Clarence Thomas鈥檚 majority opinion in Egbert v. Boule, moreover, has implications that stretch far beyond the border. Egbert guts a seminal Supreme Court precedent, Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents (1971), which established that federal law enforcement officers who violate the Constitution may be individually sued 鈥 and potentially be required to compensate their victims for their illegal actions.
Egbert is a severe blow to the broader project of police accountability. While it does not target lawsuits against state law enforcement officers who violate the Constitution, it all but eliminates the public鈥檚 ability to sue border patrol officers 鈥 and possibly all federal officers 鈥 who commit similar violations.
In fairness, Egbert does indicate that people who believe their rights were violated by federal law enforcement may file a grievance with the law enforcement agency that employs the officer who allegedly violated the Constitution. But such grievances will be investigated by other law enforcement officers, and no court or other agency can review a law enforcement officer鈥檚 decision to exonerate a fellow officer.
And, perhaps most importantly, Egbert most likely shuts down a civil rights plaintiffs鈥 ability to be compensated if their rights are violated.
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softhe4rted 9 months ago
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writers & lovers, lily king
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crimsonkismet 22 hours ago
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饾櫚饾殲饾殣饾殲饾殰饾殱 饾煼饾熁, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煾 饾殐饾殤饾殠 饾櫝饾殥饾殜饾殯饾殥饾殠饾殰 饾櫨饾殢 饾櫟饾殯饾殜饾殫饾殻 饾櫤饾殜饾殢饾殧饾殜, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煻 -饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煿
[ID: August 15. Wasted day. END ID]
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good-as-dead 7 months ago
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鈥淚N THE FIELD || 讘砖讚讛鈥, @nathanielorion / 鈥淲ar, The First Discord鈥, De Scott Evans / 鈥淐ain slaying Abel鈥, Gioacchino Assereto / 鈥淐ain and Abel鈥, Laszlo Mathe
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dycefic 6 months ago
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The Sword Of The Champion
This is a slightly reworked excerpt from another novel-length story I'm sort of working on, my take on the Child of Prophecy trope.
The prophecy runs as follows: A girl will be chosen. A brown girl born in the five hundredth year, poor and proud, with unknown gifts and a hero鈥檚 heart, and she will free us all.
... that's a lot of girls, over a whole empire.
Three girls from the same village make a run for it, one bringing her twin brother along. They almost immediately collect a Traveller girl of the same birth year, along with her uncle, deciding they're all better off together. This is just one of their adventures....
#
Three girls and a boy should not know aught of fighting. That, surely, had been what the soldiers thought when they came openly, demanding surrender, their swords still sheathed. A farmer鈥檚 brat, two forester鈥檚 whelps, and a barmaid? What threat could they be to real soldiers? And after all, the soldiers hadn鈥檛 known about the Travellers, Patrin and his niece Mireli.
They鈥檇 learned their mistake quickly. Nia and Gethin were foresters themselves, and fast with a bow. They鈥檇 had three soldiers dead and one wounded before the others could raise their shields or draw their swords.
Althena had been raised on a farm, but Patrin had trained her in magic for weeks now. Simple magics. Small magics. But calling fire wasn鈥檛 small when she called it into men鈥檚 clothing, or hair, or under the noses of their horses. A farm girl knew what would burn, and what would frighten.
Mireli was swift with a knife, though she knew no magic. While the fire blinded and confused, she ducked in among them, cutting straps with a knife like a razor. Saddles slipped, and sword-belts, and helms.
But they were soldiers. Surprise had helped, but Beata wasn鈥檛 sure it had helped enough. She waded in with a staff to rescue Mireli, when a man caught hold of her, but then they were cut off from the others. A staff was longer than a sword, but there was a limit to how much damage she could do to men with shields and armour. They were pushed back, through the door of the temple, and that was bad. There was no other entrance. They were trapped.
Beata backed up, and backed up, until she felt her heels hit the altar stone. 鈥淕et behind,鈥 she told Mireli, shoving, and Mireli went around the altar in a tumbler鈥檚 roll, taking shelter behind the tall plate of stone that formed the back piece for the low altar. She probably expected Beata to follow.
Instead, Beata jumped up on the altar, a standing jump she couldn鈥檛 have made a month ago. Two feet wasn鈥檛 much height, but it gave a solid advantage to the woman holding six feet of seasoned oak, and a strong disadvantage to men with short-swords. She held them off for what felt like hours, but was probably only minutes. One went down and stayed down after a smashing blow to his face with the steel-shod foot of the staff. Another went to the floor clutching a broken arm, swearing and gasping.
The others were wary, now, and kept their shields up. There were three of them. It was hard to keep her eye on all three at once. If Mireli came out, she might be able to take one, if they didn鈥檛 see her - but she only had a short knife. A bad weapon against men with swords and shields.
If one of their archers came in, Beata was doomed. If Nia or Gethin did, they might win. But there were other soldiers out there, and none of the other four knew anything about close combat. She wasn鈥檛 hopeful.
Then one of them backed away, lowering his shield so she could see his grin. Still grinning, he lifted his sword and moved to follow Mireli behind the altar.
And Mireli only had a short knife.
Beata didn鈥檛 have time to think. She whipped her staff around, at full extension of both staff and arm. He鈥檇 thought he was out of reach. She wasn鈥檛 sure if he had time to realize how wrong he鈥檇 been. The force of the blow, six feet of oak swung as hard and fast as a strong arm could manage, hit him like a blow from a sledge-hammer, crushing both helm and the skull inside.
It also ripped the staff out of her hand.
With no options left, she turned and raised her hand to the sword suspended above the altar. 鈥淚f you don鈥檛 want this, strike me dead - or them,鈥 she muttered, and wrapped her hand around the hilt.
Then鈥
The temple wasn鈥檛 there anymore. There was only a great emptiness, containing herself, and the sword, and a small, very upright form before her. The face turned up to hers was small and dark, a typically Cymrian face that could have belonged to a hundred women she鈥檇 known, old and young. 鈥淲ill you take up the sword, and be my champion?鈥 the goddess asked. 鈥淲ill you protect the weak, defend the helpless, and swear never to turn your back upon those who ask your aid?鈥
Beata stared at her. 鈥淵ou want me to be a *champion*? I don鈥檛 even know what to do with this thing.鈥
鈥淲ill you protect the weak, defend the helpless, and swear never to turn your back upon those who ask your aid?鈥 The goddess cocked her head. She was somehow younger than Nia, and older than Beata鈥檚 grandmother, and all ages in between. She wore age like a tree wore leaves, every tiny movement showing a different leaf to the sun.
鈥淕reat lady, I am a barmaid, not a champion. I鈥檓 no use to you, I鈥檓 just trying to protect my friend.鈥 Beata tried to draw her hand back from the sword鈥檚 hilt - and couldn鈥檛. It wasn鈥檛 as if her hand were stuck to the sword, more as if she were trying to pull her wrist away from her hand. The two were one.
鈥淲ill you protect the weak, defend the helpless, and swear never to turn your back upon those who ask your aid?鈥 The voice was stern now, and the small woman raised her brows.
The same question asked three times *must* be answered on the third time, and the answer was binding. Everyone knew that. And Beata had put her hand on a sacred sword, knowing that that was what it was. The goddess had the right to ask this of her.
She groaned quietly. 鈥淵es, I will protect the weak, defend the helpless, and swear never to turn my back upon those who ask my aid,鈥 she said. 鈥淚 do all of those things anyway. But I don鈥檛 think I鈥檓 going to be much of a champion in the few minutes I have left. Those soldiers - 鈥
But the goddess was gone, and she was on the altar, turning smoothly towards the soldiers with the unsheathed sword in her hand. And even as she realized that she did know what to do, she was leaping forward. It was like remembering something she鈥檇 forgotten for a moment, like finding a word on the tip of your tongue, like the catching of a dropped glass before the mind had time to notice the fall. She had taken the second soldier before the first hit the ground. She was leaping for the open doorway before the second soldier鈥檚 head bounced on the ground.
The sword held the knowledge, she realized. All the skill of every champion was held inside the sword, so that a champion who caught up the sword in a moment of need would already know what to do next.
The sword rang on a hastily-raised shield. Without thinking, she seized the edge of the shield in her left hand and jerked it to the side, spinning the soldier whose arm it was buckled to until his left side was fully exposed and his sword blocked by his own body. She dispatched him without effort, and felt a sudden surge of elation which was not her own. It had come from the sword.
Even as she thought it, even as she leaped over the fallen man, she understood why. The goddess did not bestow strength or wisdom on her champion, for that was not in her gift. All she could give was knowledge, housed in a very simple sort of 鈥榤ind鈥 magically housed within the sword. The sword had been expecting鈥 well, an ordinary person. It was always an ordinary person, in extremis, who took up this sword, not a warrior.
The sword, insofar as it could think at all with about as much intelligence as a puppy, was thinking 鈥榟urrah, someone with muscles鈥, and Beata found herself laughing a little hysterically while she fought yet another soldier. It had been hoping for, at best, a farmer, used to physical labour. It was *delighted* to be in the hand of a barmaid who was nearly six feet tall and who could lift a beer barrel over her head.
As if in echo of her thought, one of the enemy archers swung a staff at her and yelped when she caught it in her free hand. 鈥淲hy are you so strong?鈥 he demanded hysterically, trying to pull it back out of her hand.
鈥淚鈥檓 a barmaid,鈥 she told him, and lopped off his head.
He was the last. When she realized that, and the last minute or two caught up with her, she leaned on a tree to throw up. The sword, more like a hound than ever, projected loving reassurance that *everyone* threw up after the first time, that it was perfectly all right. Killing people was very shocking and unpleasant and if she was the kind of person who liked that sort of thing, she wouldn鈥檛 have been suitable to be a champion in the first place.
By the time she was done, the others had gathered near her, staring at her with round, shocked eyes. Mireli was there, and not noticeably bleeding, she noticed. Good. 聽鈥淎re you all all right?鈥 she asked hoarsely, wiping her mouth on her sleeve between the bloodstains.
Nia handed her a flask of water, which Beata drank gratefully, washing the bile away. 鈥淣othing to speak of,鈥 Nia said. 鈥淎 few bruises and cuts, nothing to signify.鈥 She looked at the sword. 鈥淚s that the magic sword that Patrin told us not to touch under any circumstances?鈥
鈥淵es.鈥 Beata moved to the next tree, further from the vomit and the headless body, and leaned against it. 鈥淚 had to swear fealty to the goddess to get it.鈥
鈥淲hich goddess?鈥 Gethin asked, sounding interested.
鈥淚 didn鈥檛 ask. The one who had a sword ready when I needed a sword.鈥 Beata took a moment to examine it. The blood was already slipping off the sword like water off oil, and she could see some runes on the blade, though she couldn鈥檛 read them. 鈥淪he just made me promise to protect the weak and helpless and then鈥 let me do it.鈥
Althena put her hands on her hips. 鈥淲eak and helpless? I burned a man鈥檚 face off today, I will have you know.鈥
Gethin chuckled. 鈥淵es, but would you arm-wrestle Beata? I wouldn鈥檛. I couldn鈥檛 bear the humiliation a second time.鈥
Patrin smiled, a little sourly. He鈥檇 lost, too, and he鈥檇 taken it with much less grace than Gethin had. 鈥淲eaker than she is against heavily armed men we are, whether we like it or not.鈥 His smile got less sour, and he laid a hand on his niece鈥檚 shoulder. 鈥淎nd鈥 thank you.鈥 He鈥檇 been too far away to get Mireli back out of harm鈥檚 way, she鈥檇 seen that even as she leaped in with staff swinging.
鈥淲e鈥檙e friends.鈥 Beata shrugged. 鈥淚鈥檇 have done the same for any one of us.鈥 And that was true. She straightened up, and stretched. 鈥淥ogh. I鈥檓 going to be sore tomorrow.鈥
鈥淲e all are.鈥 Mireli paused, then looked down at the headless man. 鈥淲hat did you say to him?鈥
Beata glanced down, then hastily away. She hadn鈥檛 wanted to know what the inside of a neck looked like. 鈥淭hat I鈥檓 a barmaid,鈥 she admitted.
鈥淥h. Well, at least he died confused and frightened,鈥 Mireli said, sounding pleased. 鈥淟ike the other prophecy girls he and the others have taken.鈥
鈥淒oes that mean Beata is the prophecy girl? The real one?鈥 Althena asked Patrin. 鈥淚 mean鈥 she鈥檚 the champion of a goddess now.鈥
Patrin snorted. 鈥淕irl, you have a ridiculously powerful magical gift, and your friend Nia found a mystical white stag to lead us through the Grimwood. Doubtless Mireli will develop the ability to see through walls within the week.鈥
鈥淎ctually - 鈥 Mireli and Nia said it together, and Mireli blushed. Nia glanced at her sympathetically and continued. 鈥淢ireli had a dream about Beata, holding up a sword and lit by a great light, two nights ago.鈥
鈥淔oretelling. Even better.鈥 Patrin sighed. 鈥淲hich of you is the girl the prophecy truly speaks of, I know not. But I am almost entirely certain that it is one of you. Signs and portents should not be ignored.鈥
鈥淧erfect.鈥 Beata sighed, and looked at the sword again. 鈥淚 just wanted to hide in the woods, you know,鈥 she told it. 鈥淛ust protect a couple of girls from my own village and hide until it was all over. Now I have to go to the Imperial Capital and kill the Mage-Emperor. Or help one of them do it. I hope you鈥檙e pleased with yourself.鈥
The sword was extremely pleased. Slaying tyrants was, apparently, one of its favourite things to do.
鈥淲ell, we should move on from here first,鈥 Nia said practically, 鈥渂efore anyone comes looking for this lot. Then鈥 I suppose we figure out how to get to the capital?鈥
鈥淒oes anyone even know where it is?鈥 Gethin asked. 鈥淚 mean, I know it鈥檚 west of Cymria, but that鈥檚 all.鈥
鈥淲e should search the bodies,鈥 Patrin said firmly. 鈥淭hese are Imperial soldiers. Those usually carry maps.鈥 聽
鈥淲on鈥檛 they be maps of Cymria, though?鈥 Mireli asked, crouching to open the archer鈥檚 belt pouch.
鈥淢aps of Cymria would help.鈥
鈥淗ow?鈥 Gethin asked.
鈥淏ecause,鈥 聽Patrin said very patiently, 鈥淚鈥檝e *been* to the capital. I know the way there. But I don鈥檛 know the way there from here, because you and your sister and your mystical stag have been dragging me through trackless woods and mountains for nearly a month and I am more lost than I have ever been in my entire life. I know where the capital is. But in order to go there, I need to know where *I* am!鈥
鈥淥h. All right.鈥 Gethin shrugged. 鈥淲e鈥檒l round up the horses and go through the saddle bags.鈥 He paused. 鈥淲hat is a map, anyway?鈥
Patrin stared at him, mouth opening and closing. Mireli rolled her eyes at him. 鈥淚t鈥檚 a picture of the land,鈥 she explained. 鈥淔rom high up, like a bird sees it, or when you look out over flat ground from a mountainside. Just bring us any parchment you find.鈥
鈥淲e can do that.鈥 Nia and Gethin chorused, and then went in search of strayed horses.
Beata went to help. She鈥檇 never seen a map either or - until just now - heard of one. But the sword knew. While she rifled through pouches and purses and any clothing that wasn鈥檛 too bloody, the sword showed her the strange, flat pictures, and how to read them. Apparently one of the champions had, in time, become a general, and generals had to learn these things.
If they found a map, or even a good hint, she鈥檇 let Patrin show them the way. Only if they didn鈥檛, 聽she decided, would she admit that she knew exactly where they were, thanks to the sword. She鈥檇 already beaten him at arm-wrestling and now at sword-work. She wasn鈥檛 sure he could take another blow to his pride this soon.
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haleyincarnate 10 months ago
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Excerpt from聽鈥淐anada鈥 by Richard Ford
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shawnmuffinmendes1998 a year ago
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old-school-romantics a month ago
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crimsonkismet 22 hours ago
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饾櫚饾殲饾殣饾殲饾殰饾殱 饾煼饾熁, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煿 饾殐饾殤饾殠 饾櫝饾殥饾殜饾殯饾殥饾殠饾殰 饾櫨饾殢 饾櫟饾殯饾殜饾殫饾殻 饾櫤饾殜饾殢饾殧饾殜, 饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煻 -饾煼饾熆饾煼饾煿
[ID: August 15. Agonies in bed toward morning. END ID]
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sunflorall 8 months ago
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Kahlil Gibran, from Beloved Prophet: The love letters of Kahlil Gibran and Marry Haskell, and her private journal
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fernreads a month ago
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In a historic reversal, the Supreme Court on Friday overturned the landmark 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision and ruled states may again outlaw abortion.
The court鈥檚 conservative majority said the Constitution does not protect the rights of women to choose abortion, and instead leaves these decisions in the hands of state lawmakers.
The 5-4 ruling marks the most significant curtailing of an established constitutional right in the court鈥檚 history.
The opinion written by Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. closely tracks a draft which was leaked by Politico on May 2nd.
The court鈥檚 three liberal justices dissented in the Mississippi case.
The ruling figures to set off a fierce political fight nationwide and state-by-state as politicians and voters weigh in on whether abortion should be restricted or prohibited entirely.
Opinion polls show most Americans support access to abortion, at least in the early months of a pregnancy. Nevertheless half the states are expected to seek to quickly enforce laws that make most abortions illegal.
The decision is the high court鈥檚 most far-reaching reversal on a matter of constitutional rights since 1954, when the justices reversed six decades of precedent and struck down laws authorizing racial segregation.
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fictional-man 14 days ago
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ninasdrafts 8 months ago
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The biggest mistake I've ever made was thinking time didn't exist for me. I was young and stupid and convinced it would bend to my will like reeds bend to the wind. I kept the words that could change everything lodged under my tongue, too scared, too shy, too embarrassed to say them out loud. I thought I could put it off another week, at least. Or a month. It didn't really matter, did it, because maybe it would come naturally, without me having to make myself appear vulnerable and turning myself inside out for you. But time placed its noose around my neck and pulled taut and in the blink of an eye you were gone. You were gone before I could utter a single word. Gone before I could curse time for not being enough. You would never read the words I wrote to you. Not in a week, not in a month.聽 I'm done waiting now. And I'm so devastated you had to pass for me to understand that some things cannot wait. If you love someone, let them know.
no more waiting / n.j.
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