photography

I Write With My Hands About Things I Do With My Hands

Sup, mofos.

Remember my fiance? You know, the one who I think is super fucking stoic and mysterious but is actually just a huge nerd that makes goat noises?

This fuck weasel?


Guess what he did!

No, you have to guess.

He upgraded my camera. He upgraded my little Kodak to a beautiful, sleek Nikon D5600. Not that I didn’t love my sweet Manon but the local community college did not know how to teach me professional photography on a Kodak. So, let me introduce you to Richard Campbell Gansey III aka Daddy Dick.

He’s beautiful, yes?

I’m stoked because I can now invest in some photography classes during the summer. Here’s a comprehensive list of “what this means for everyone in my sphere of existence”:

  • More pictures of tarot readings
  • More pictures of crystals and bones
  • More pictures of books
  • More pictures of coffee
  • Humans being dragged into adventures on a more frequent basis
  • Obnoxiously spontaneous day trips
  • “I need a fucking picture of that”
  • “I need a picture of your fucking face”
  • “Hold fucking still”

 

Here are some (edited) pictures of bookish layouts that I’ve done in the last couple weeks (taken on the Kodak).


Here is an (edited) picture of a shirt that my boss designed for me that I turned into Tumblr trash.


Here’s me with Daddy Dick.

I also decided to get an Apple Watch, because go big or go home, right? I’m very surprised with how much I like it – I went on a hike yesterday and it was really efficient to have the watch on instead of trying to use my phone for everything.

So, I’m going to be working on photography quite a lot in the upcoming months. This Mercury Retrograde is absolutely kicking my ass; I’m normally an extremely restless person who needs to be engaging in some sort of creative outlet to feel sane and I’m usually small and consistently angry, but this is something else entirely. This is some “I’m afraid of my own shadow, I don’t know who I am anymore” My sister and I are going to get crystals to combat some of the disruptive energy buzzing around the atmosphere. I’ve had an insane amount of drive to do tarot readings lately and when I was up on my mountain I had a weird pull a card pull a card pull a card feeling tugging at my gut. I drew a card.

 

 

Queen of Wands, as defined by Maggie Stiefvater in my raven oracle deck, is essentially the “fire breathing over-protective viciously caustic bitch” card. In case you were wondering how that fucking translates into something important – I pulled my personality on a card. I rarely ever draw fire cards. My birth cards are the Moon and Strength and I typically always end up with Death somewhere in my spreads. Honestly, I think it’s the first time I’ve ever paid attention to the Queen of Wands but I am now paying very good attention and listening very well to whatever the world is saying.

The Queen of Wands is the dominant feminine energy of the element of Fire. She is not afraid to demonstrate her power to others nor does she shy away from a challenge. She is therefore a strong leader who is focused on her desires, intending to get what she wants. Thus, the Queen of Wands indicates that you are strong, independent and able to take care of yourself and sustain your own creative vision, even in the face of adversity. You know what you want and how to get it, and you are masterful at engaging with others to achieve your goals.

Called. The. Fuck. Out. It’s always a little bittersweet when the universe is like “Yeah dude, you have the magic but you kind of need a kick in the fucking pants to remember to use it.”

In bookish news, I put aside Me, Earl the Dying Girl favor of Labyrinth of the Lost by Zoraida Cordova. I needed some more magic and less male narrative in my life. Normally, I gear myself more towards male-oriented novels because 97% of the time, I can’t relate to the main character when it’s a girl. Unless she’s like, basically Satan, I cannot handle the tortured, love-sick monolog and the internal struggle to be “just like other girls”. I have never once had a desire to be the same as someone else and I hope that I receive a nice uppercut to the jaw if that ever happens. I digress;  I like Cordova’s novel thus far, I have always had a strong inclination to the study of brujas and Dia De Los Muertos. I hope this book does the culture justice. I just finished Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea and the ending was not bad! I really enjoyed the story and I’m considering getting the second book in the series but I’m so behind on my TBR that I can feel my soul dying a little every day. Just kidding, I don’t have a soul; but my TBR is fucking insane, I wasn’t kidding about that part. I noticed that audio-books have really changed my interaction with reading as a whole. I was driving the other day, running errands as we adults do, and I realized that I’ve started to equate certain parts of town with certain moments in books. Seventh Street now reminds me of when Ronan stole the Pig and raced K. The parking lot of Ulta out on Pyramid Highway will always bear the weight of Kit finding out that Della is pregnant. It’s a strange sort of reality, where words have started to paint themselves into my town.

In terms of other creative projects, I am currently teaching myself to embroider so I can give people dish towels that say shit like “go fuck yourself” and “thug ass piece of trash” because you know, I love them. I’d like to be able to embroider patches someday because I fucking love putting patches on shit. I’m trying so hard to put more energy into bullet journaling. That’s right, friends, ya girl is Bullet Journal Trash. Honestly, though, I have tried and tested so many fucking methods of keeping my shit together. I have the attention span of a five-year-old so traditional methods are not good for me. My BuJo (shut the fuck up) is less of a planner and more of a Book of Shadows and memoir cross-over. The most organized aspect of it is my “Important Dates” page where I basically write down any appointments I have that are at high risk to be forgotten aka “any appointment I make, ever.” Here is my cuss-word filled BuJo in all its glory, paired up with my rude-ass pencil bag that has more lipsticks and lighters in it than actual pens. 

My 2017 reading accomplishments page is sad, I know. I got sucked into the Raven Cycle series and it spit me out, completely unmotivated to read anything else, ever again. If you need me, I’ll be continuing my existential crisis over the search for a dead Welsh king and the fact that I have the same soul as a street-racing farmer.

That’s all there is,

Carry on –

The Book Witch

Advertisements
Standard
personal

Sunday Ramblings

So, I’m finally crawling out of the despair pit that was my Post-Raven Cycle Reading Slump. I’m still completely over the moon with that series – it was a life changer but I’m easing my way back into other literature. I read Aristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of the Universe and was pleasantly surprised with how much I liked it. Then I tried a contemporary romance and that was a mistake, so I gave it to a friend and moved onto Me, Earl & The Dying Girl which gives me a sneaking suspicion that I, too, might die at the end. I’m also listening to Between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea and also enjoying it quite a bit.

On an unrelated note, I strongly recommend listening to podcasts about subjects that you enjoy if you ever feel lost, they’ll help you rediscover your love for “stuff”

On a semi-unrelated note, here are some updates about my life:

  • I’m coloring my hair to black in a couple weeks. I had a black fo-hawk a couple years ago and I loved the color but the length was a bit much. Trying to keep up with my growth right now is a bitch, so I’m going to nix that problem right in the roots. (That WAS a hair pun, you’re welcome)
  •  I have an appointment to get my thestral tattoo in a couple weeks and I’ll also be adding to my fingers; my tarot symbols didn’t take very well to my skin but my artist is the most amazing human ever and I have no doubt that she’ll be able to fix that.
  • I may be upgrading my camera! Seriously, I’m so excited. I did not expect to love photography this much. I also plan on giving my sister my Kodak, in the event of said upgrade, because she loves taking pictures and it would be nice to have a buddy.
  • I have been agonizing over my Imagine Dragons tattoo. Combining five songs into a single bicep-sized image is basically torture. I was stoked when I finally created this masterpiece on my computer and have thus decided to have thousands of tiny needles engrave it on my skin. imgine dragons
  • Last but not least: I ordered a DNA tracing kit in order to find out more about my personal heritage. That’s what this particular segment of my odd ramblings is going to focus on: family.

You know the word: family. Familia. Teaghlaigh. Семейный

It’s defined as all “descendants of a common ancestor”.

My mom is adopted so I don’t know anything about my ancestors. The fact that she was adopted has no relevance to my life other than that. My Papa and Mimi taught me that we chose our own family, and I’ve stuck to that doctrine throughout my whole life. I am closer to and more loved by people who aren’t even in the same genetic pool as I than some people that I share blood with. But, more on that later. The moral of the story is that my mom was so loved that my grandparents chose her to be their child. I share no blood with those same grandparents and yet, I share their hearts.

Let’s talk about my dad.

Our last name is “Primak”, which is a very Russian rooted word. So, we know that much. I go by “Hayden” because I feel as though an alias is something I was born to have and middle names can totally count for an alias, right?

Fucking right.

My dad…

dado

(The resemblance between us is uncanny, by the way)

My dad was in the middle of building a student union at my University when I was much younger. He was one of the upper dudes who told other dudes how to do math-y shit and how to not be idiots. My dad, for lack of better terms, is not an idiot. I keep thinking about this particular time period because there’s a memory that has lodged itself so far into my brain that I have theorized it would take some serious sort of accident to dislodge it. My dad took me to the University library. It was different than it was now, but I remember two things:

  1. I was scared shitless. These college kids were tall and smart as fuck and I was an awkward Catholic school kid. I imagined every one of them looked at me with disgust and years of wisdom beyond mine. Little did I know that they were all dying internally and had I paid better attention, at least 26% were in pajamas and 38% were hungover.
  2. My dad doesn’t have a lot of words to say. He’s one of those individuals who doesn’t fill your life with meaningless bullshit if he can help it. As a child, I did not understand that. I grew up around Italians and Italians are the loudest breed of human beings who love (I say this with as much endearing fondness as I can) meaningless bullshit. Today, I very much understand that my dad offering me admittance to this library of scholars was his way of saying “I see you reading, and I see your passion for it.” I had been put down for my love of books for so many years that this realization was a bucket of ice water to my brain.

Long story short, he’s someone that I do happen to have a blood relation with, and who I am grateful to have a blood relation with. My dad is the reason I have a caffeine dependence. I look for him tucked in corners of my town, in cafes, on Lander St, in the stars. Jason, bless him, can now take one look at my face, see the tears in my eyes, and know that I am about to say “My dad and I always came here” or “This is something my dad would love”.  I don’t have those moments as often with my Mimi, because she follows me in my grief, in my sorrow. She does not bind herself to places like the living but wraps her absence around my wrist like a leash. I always thought “I am not like the people I come from” and I will be the first to tell you, as an adult, how wrong I was. You believe yourself to be an individual completely separate from your paternal or maternal influences but I am at least 48.5% Lou Primak. My dad is the smell of really fucking good coffee and pine trees. He’s old leather briefcases and the ridges of a baseball glove. He’s learning to ride a bike and the first time I went to Seattle. My dad is a winter child, like me.

I have a few moms at the moment, so let me talk about that really quick. I have my biological mom, Violet. I have my stepmom, Heather. I have my god-mom, Tonya. I have other moms who have picked me up along the way, but these ones are the most prevalent in my everyday understanding of the world. My Mimi was also my mom but she’s gone now and crying was not the point of this post. Obviously, you know I’m blood-related to Violet so let’s discuss Heather and Tonya because they are prime examples of “The blood of the covenant”

Heather is my dad’s wife. They got married when I was, like, nine or ten. They gave me a brother –  Jackson, who looks like me in dude form and has more energy in his pinky finger than I do in my whole body.

Heather is autumn leaves, a river in the distance, a home cooked meal when you’ve been living off of Ramen. Heather is an ocean of creative energy, a new project, a summertime nap. She’s the moment when the season changes to autumn, the brief seconds between “then” and “now”. She is my kindred spirit, the whole reason I got into blogging and cooking and photography and crafting. She’s the driving force behind my ingenuity. She’s my model introvert; she showed me that being comfortable with yourself is what really makes us unique. So many people lack the ability to sit with themselves for an hour before they begin to hate it. I look at kids who have stepparents that they feel bitter towards or dislike and I can’t even begin to tell you how ignorant I am on that topic. I had someone who helped me through so many difficult areas of my life and still put up with my shit, even though she had no obligation to do so.

It’s one of those phenomena where you look at your life under a microscope and can say “Holy shit, thank you”

Tonya is my god-mother which means, if you haven’t a clue about Catholicism, that if everyone died, she would be my new mom. She has actually said at one point “If everyone dies, I get to be your new mom. I mean, I am your mom. But this would be, like legally. It’s on papers at the lawyer’s office”. She’s also said things like “If I ever heard someone talking to you like that, I would spider-monkey over the counter and rip their throat out.”

Tonya was my spirit guide in another life (more on that later) and she probably gave birth to me in another one, too. She’s a fucking badass and I feel quite a bit better when I’m in her presence. She has that calming, “All is well, child. I’ll fuck a bitch up” vibe going for her. Tonya is rose quartz on a living room table. She’s a cone of incense and smudging your home with sage. She’s a wildfire, a hurricane of kindness and honesty. She’s a Pride flag, bright and burning. She’s a tattoo needle, a patch sewn into your heart. She’s a leather jacket and a Johnny Cash shirt. I am not blood-related to Tonya, her dad was a firefighter with my Papa, but I would never be able to put a tangible amount on how much I love her.

In short, I am not doing a DNA test to find my genetic relatives. You know why? Cause fuck that. know who my family is. I refer to myself constantly as a “walking contradiction of impulsivity and contemplation” meaning I’m the type of person who moves on a whim but budgets for it, the type who decides to dye her hair black but waits a month, the kind who suddenly realizes that they need a motorcycle but sets up a piggy bank for it, the kind who thinks “I need a new tattoo” over twenty times a day but spends more time designing them than getting them. The kind who says “Fuck it, I’m doing a DNA test” but holds off for five weeks.

I am a pretty big believer in reincarnation. In fact, I would probably say that it encompasses most of my thoughts on the afterlife.  I don’t actually believe in an afterlife but I think most people are recycled into new things. I do, however, think that some of us don’t get more chances. Like, when Hitler died they were like “Bro, what the fuck? We were gonna make you a sunfish or some dumb shit so you could learn but you just kept going?! We’re gonna have to scrap you, this energy can’t go anywhere else. You piece of shit, what the fuck. We were able to recycle Pontius Pilate for fucks sake”

So, in my search of my DNA, I’m hoping to find pieces of me scattered amongst the globe. I’m hoping to put them together and maybe resurrect the story of my lungs, my hair, my eyes.

That’s all there is,

Carry on,

The Book Witch

 

 

 

Standard
poetry

But you, Oh God

You cannot raise a child with spell-books tucked under her arms or superstition carved into her skull and expect her to not wear her pride on her skin. You cannot show her the wilderness inside her and not want her to grow wings. You watched her, with dirt under her fingernails, blood coating her knuckles, as she found magic; you stoked the love inside her until it burnt her to nothing. Now she is here, a cacophony of the people who rebuilt her, a dragon among the men. She has been to the cathedral and learned the words in Latin. She engraved them on her heart and when they rejected her, she found a different god. She wears a crown of thorns and destroys herself so that her flesh can match her blood. You made her, you made her, she made herself the ravens scream at night. You gave her a name that meant “light bringer, light carrier” and forgot that mythology has bestowed those creatures of death the same burden. You gave her compassion and a need for solitude; you raised a wolf in place of a girl. When she laid her soul bare on her skin, you wept for the innocence lost and she wept because it was finally unerringly visible. She is part of the cycle, the thread that runs through the circle of time. The day she was born was a day that signified the end, the beginning, and all the other pieces thrown haphazardly in the dark. Shards of the people before landed on ribs in a way that turned her into a weapon. You tried to contain her in one universe and found that she cannot be restricted to a single space.

She grew up learning tarot cards as an extension of herself. The moon and the carnivores are her companions. She hurdled over her fear of the dark, embracing it in scarred arms. She became a book witch, a bone witch, a water witch. She changed her hair, her blood, her voice. There’s a rage inside her that you wouldn’t believe, a love inside her like you couldn’t imagine. She learned that she felt everything all at once and that it was her ultimate undoing. She understood that it would destroy her, so she tried to destroy herself, instead. She loved so outstandingly hard, with such violent fervor, that she ripped holes in her chest that had to be sewn back together with ice and fire. The people she loved tried to take her wings and forgot she had claws. There’s a restlessness inside her that sings for home home home but she chose to be an ambassador of change – she has no home except herself. Her soul is a haunted house broken, broken, rebuilt. 

Grief and rage carry themselves like matches inside her veins. She turns to words, tries to create poetry, when nothing is left – when everything has been burnt away. She is a piece of stained glass, a religious experience gone wrong.

And when they told her that she would never be able to love someone until she loved herself,

she replied “Bullshit. I have never loved myself. But him, Oh God, I loved him so much I forgot what hating myself felt like”

 

raven tattootarot fingersz 1tarot fingersz 2

 

Standard