Nov 28, 2014

Perfection Is All to the Misguided Child

I found truth at the bottom of a latte — at least that’s where the search began. Instead of Styrofoam I looked upon a snow-capped mountain. A lenticular cloud hovered above it like a giant amoeba; two men and a woman who wore pelts, beads and feathers crawled up the hillside.

The Tree Witch
by Uberkraaft

Lenticular clouds come in several flavors. They form in the troposphere, the lowest portion of the Earth's atmosphere which, by the way, contains 80% of the atmosphere's mass.

"Virunga National Park Landscape" by Cai 

Lenticular clouds sometimes get mistaken for UFOs or "UFO cover." Being something of a lowlander myself, I saw my first lenticular cloud well into my adult years. They do not form close to the ground.

Nov 23, 2014

Sleeping Babies Drift Up to the Ocean in the Sky

Six hundred priests and devotees of the Baby Tree filed out of their ship humming lullabies, with a poisoner among them. Following a lavender moon the adorants took to the path discovered by their human ancestors two thousand years before. Chi Bo scanned the crowd for the tree killer.

Secret of Flight
by Thomas Rude

This prompt has two or three sources of inspiration -- the art of Thomas Rude, of which I give an example above (he makes wonderful woodcuts, do check him out) -- a recent song by Earth, "Torn by the Fox of the Crescent Moon" and, finally, Gene Wolfe's The Urth of the New Sun, in which I have been quite absorbed lately.

Blogger Romke Soldaat maintains a very entertaining website, Bouguereau Remastered, collecting a large amount of humorous and uncanny reinterpretations of William-Adolphe Bouguereau's portraits. Romke has included my Vitruvian Sisters in his collection, and they find themselves in great company. Go. Peruse, Enjoy.

The Vitruvian Sisters
by John Magnet Bell

Nov 15, 2014

Look at All the Trojan Horsies

Steven Ergasías walked into a meeting room populated with white bunnies in business suits. Ergasías turned to his assistant and barked, “Miro, what is this?”
Miro gripped the ivory phone in his pocket.
“Easter prank, sir?”
“No prank,” said the bunnies in unison. “Prepare for the extrusion of the Goddess.”

Ice Age by "marateaman" via History Receipts Itself

Nov 12, 2014

The Vitruvian Sisters, Who Only Bought Perfectly Normal Art for Perfectly Normal People like Themselves

I smoked too much while I waited for the spy birds to come back. I must have that Pierluigi Carbonnaro that my sister got from her husband, or my name is not Incuria! Its blandness was to me the tepid embers of God’s drowsy mumblings on the eighth day. Or night. Oh, what horrid indifference that banal painting inspired! It must be mine.

Incuria Vitruvia
by John Magnet Bell

She lucked into a remarkable husband, did Nefasta. Not only does Pigsour not mind her four noses, but he only rises from the grave at Pentecost, and always bearing gifts! Gifts, eh, of a cultivated sort, gifts that demand no reaction, neither joy nor disappointment. Could they possibly be more normal? In medio stat virtus, says the inscription on Pigsour’s casket. What a man! What a wraith! What a paragon of death’s uncaring handiwork!

Nefasta Vitruvia
by John Magnet Bell

The Vitruvian sisters are a Photoshop collage I created from a portrait by William-Adolphe Bouguereau. He loved depicting the female form, which he did often -- there are more than 800 works to his name. Bouguereau's work fell out of favor in the early twentieth century, but has since been rediscovered and reevaluated. 

The Vitruvian Sisters
by John Magnet Bell

They look great on a tote bag!

Nov 5, 2014

The Blorf Who Brought Midnight to Daytown

A writer of children’s books hangs himself in Vancouver, Washington and only a little Untouchable girl in India knows why. She is four. A vertigo travels across the Earth to fill her head with awe and necessity.

Will anyone listen when she says the Black Mother is come among mortals?

Celestial Enchantress
by Camille Chew

The Goddess Kali, whose name means "time has come," among other things, could well say of herself _Negra sum sed formosa_ ("I am black but beautiful"). She is alternately presented as benevolent and destructive.

Other goddesses of death and the endtimes have followed us from before the beginning of History: I'm thinking of Hecate, goddess of witchcraft and the crossroads, or the Sumerian queen of the underworld, Ereshkigal.

by Bastien Lecouffe Deharme

The "Untouchables" of India and Nepal, the Dalit, are a product of ancient rivalries congealed into a caste system.

From Wikipedia:
"In the context of traditional Hindu society, Dalit status has often been historically associated with occupations regarded as ritually impure, such as any involving leatherwork, butchering, or removal of rubbish, animal carcasses, and waste. Dalits worked as manual labourers cleaning streets, latrines, and sewers. Engaging in these activities was considered to be polluting to the individual, and this pollution was considered contagious. As a result, Dalits were commonly segregated, and banned from full participation in Hindu social life. For example, they could not enter a temple or a school, and were required to stay outside the village. Elaborate precautions were sometimes observed to _prevent incidental contact between Dalits and other castes._ Discrimination against Dalits still exists in rural areas in the private sphere, in everyday matters such as access to eating places, schools, temples and water sources." (Emphases mine.)

Consider the difficulty in making yourself heard when you don't enjoy high status and don't live in the most democratic of societies. Then add to that the extra burden of a message so crazy, that only you know it makes sense. And if you don't get across to the right people at the right time, your world goes kaboom. That would make a hell of a story, right?

Let's wrap this up with other contemporary representations of the Goddess:

Because the Fox Barks
by Bastien Lecouffe Deharme

Kali Defeats Ratkabija
by Rory Midhani

ma kali
by Rajkamal

Obey Kali
by Tshirtbaba