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Topics - Q. G. Pennyworth

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Aneristic Illusions / Completely Innocent Gears
« on: May 18, 2023, 05:32:44 pm »
There is no sin
In editing
Cleaning typos
From forms
Filled out by others
Tidying language
Making clear what was muddy
Shining light on truth
And scraping away
So long as it is done
With care
And accuracy
We must always strive
For accuracy

And so too, is there no sin
In writing down
What is seen
When you are
Where you have been paid to be
So long as it is done
With an eye for the truth
Ever striving
For accuracy

In the light of all this
How could it be wrong
To pass along
The evidence of something amiss
To someone who knows
How to deal with it?
Someone who is
Trained and equipped
To handle it

And if you do have the authority
Don’t you also have the duty
To do something?
To intervene?
To protect a person from themselves
To protect the public
From the deranged?
Or simply from the consequences
Of their own poor decisions?
How can there be a sin
In doing everything you can
In service to your community?
One must always act

And one by one
The pieces of paper
Numbered and notarized
Pile up
Wind up
On the desk
Of someone
Who was given
The authority
Hammer in hand
An image painted
By a thousand blameless artists
Seeking only
To do their jobs
In a mechanical moment
The hammer strikes
A life ground down
By a machine
Made of a thousand guiltless gears

Or Kill Me / Compromise
« on: February 11, 2022, 08:09:48 pm »
Let it be known that humans are cabbages sometimes
And greyfaces are jokesters sometimes
That bipeds sometimes drop to all fours
And sheeple are sometimes woke

Let it be known that enlightenment is not a destination
But a way that people sometimes are
And sometimes are not
And this is not a flaw, but a feature

Let us not shit on people for being on a downswing
Or prevent them from moving back
Towards the kind of person
We'd like to hang out with

Let us not place blame except where it is due
Or where its funny

Apple Talk / Facebook is fucking wild, man
« on: December 01, 2021, 09:23:29 pm »
Like, you see all these normal ass posts about "I got engaged!" "I started a new job!" "Lookit this baby I made!" "here's my 112 year old granny love you!" and I'm just sitting here like, I know you owned fuzzy pink handcuffs and I know you have fucked half of the greater metro area and I know you can't get off without practically punching girls in the face and I know you bought a cage for your penis but you can't SAY THAT so it's just.. I dunno man it's fuckin bizarre.

Literate Chaotic / Daily Nonsense Thread
« on: August 10, 2021, 09:02:58 pm »
Now that Holy Nonsense 2020 is done and the website is caught up enough to post to, I'll be doing an upload a day of individual works, including the image and pdf files, and all the meta info I have access to. Gonna do my best not to drop the ball on this one.

Or Kill Me / Apocamysticism
« on: July 23, 2021, 03:05:04 am »
Why is it that when people get into religion or mysticism they so often wind up obsessed with apocalypses? The mad preacher with a sign reading THE END IS NIGH is a trope so old and pervasive I could be writing this rant in 1952. Don’t folks know it’s BAD, ACTUALLY, to wrap up your mystical identity in the trappings of Apocalypse? Don’t people know that cheerleading the end of the world is REALLY FUCKING STUPID? I’m looking at you, Cthulhu cultists.

But I’m looking at all you bitches way too into dystopian lit, too.

The fact is, we are living in a culture OBSESSED with apocalypses.  Zombie Apocalypses, Climate Apocalypses, whatever the fuck the Preppers think is gonna happen when Obummer or Sleepy Joe comes for their guns, the Apocalypse America is built on,* the one the Evangelicals are praying for every night... The fact that I can list so many that are so intimately familiar to you as a reader is already a giant red flag.

You didn’t choose the memetic soup you were going to be born into. It’s not your fault that you’re cohabiting this planet with a bunch of self-destructive hairless primates, and it’s hard to be surrounded by that cultural noise without picking up a little bit here and there. But you need to be AWARE of what you’re ingesting, and you need to EXCISE some of this apocalypse cheerleading bullshit. Because it’s killing people. Not fictional people, not potential future people, but really alive humans right now. 

America is Obsessed with Apocalypses
And America Outsources Its Problems

You can’t understand what’s happening in the Middle East without understanding the history of European colonialism and anti-Semitism and WWII and the Holocaust but you ALSO can’t understand it without knowing that a significant, organized voting bloc in the US wants very badly for a specific apocalypse to happen, and getting all the Jews to move to Israel is one of the steps on that path. You can’t understand Climate Change until you remember that there are people who honestly believe they are in the last generation of humans to occupy this planet. You can’t understand anything that’s happening in politics without constantly reminding yourself that a small but extremely loud subset of voters WANT TOTAL SOCIAL BREAKDOWN. The Call Of The Void, writ large.

And look, I really do empathize. I’ve spent my time in the hopeless pits of powerless rebellion. I’ve shut down in the face of problems too large to hope to affect. I’ve had dark nights at 3am where all I wanted to do was give up the present and try to imagine an end that, while probably not pleasant, might at least have some meaning? Some significance? But it’s a trap, and you’ve gotta claw your way out of it.

The way out isn’t gonna look how you expect, either. You might need some time being a bad guy, to break those chains of “good people don’t.” You might need to give up on politics and start running a goat larp. You might need to spend every morning for 6 weeks taking pictures of the flowers in the gardens in your neighborhood. Your escape won’t look like mine, like anyone else’s.

But When You Break Out
You’re Saving A Piece Of The World.

Apple Talk / Isolated Acts Are Not Enough
« on: January 30, 2021, 02:52:47 am »
Irena Sendlerowa saved 2,500 Jewish babies, smuggling them out of the ghettos in suitcases and ambulances and sewer pipes and tunnels, writing down everything she could about where they went to try and preserve their family records in the catastrophe

Chiune Sugihara saved 2,200 households, some 4 or 5 thousand Jews rescued with visas he scribbled til his fingers bled and they dragged him away throwing the precious slips of paper out the window of the train as he went.

Carl Lutz sent 60,000 off to Palestine when he was only authorized to send 8,000 because sometimes pretending to be bad at math is a lifesaving act.

Johan vanHulst saved 600 students, Pere Marie-Benoit saved 4,000, Gertruida Wijsmuller-Meijer saved 10,000 and on, and on, and on

And yet

They tell us all these stories of rescue and subversion and sabotage, the bombs that were empty with notes from the enslaved laborers, the girls stealing bikes and luring horny Nazis to the woods to be shot, the lists of the ones diverted from the camps. And I understand because we need to believe tht there are resistors and heroes even in the dark and there ARE there ARE they should be remembered they did the best they could and still


6 Million

After everyone they saved there were still 6 Million who weren't and ho can you ignore the fact that everything they put in everything they sacrificed every dumb trick they pulled and clever and brave and stupid thing they did barely made a dent in it all. 6 Million is the number AFTER all of that, after every single thing was done to try to mitigate it, and if you think that's an acceptable loss I do not know how to relate to you.

Isolated Acts are not worthless, but in the face of Organized Evil, Isolated Acts just are not enough. You can dig your heels in til your legs break, you can scream until your lungs bleed, you can fight with everything you have and die where you stand


Apple Talk / Identity
« on: January 02, 2021, 05:20:26 pm »
It’s so irritating to me that we are missing out on some really interesting cultural conversations about identity because we refuse to acknowledge that everyone has one. Like, yes, I am white in that I have pale skin and White in that I am treated like the default skin color and culture in my country, but also I am a White descendant of the Irish diaspora, a White granddaughter of non-English speaking immigrants, and if we could only TALK about what it means to be White, about the toxicity of assimilation, about the arbitrary nature of colorism that allowed my pale skinned ancestors to choose Whiteness where the ancestors of my friends with melanin had no such choice, we could start to tear this fucker down. If we could TALK about how my last name is a thing I was made to feel ashamed of, made to joke about, about how my grandfather would sneak away from the rest of the crowd at family gatherings to talk to the other francophone immigrants to have a moment to speak in his native tongue, a language none of his children speak, a dialect different from the one his grandchild was taught in school as an elective, maybe we could stop this fuckin SPEAK ENGLISH trash. Because we all have family history and we all are crushed into these boxes and it is SO SO SO important if you want to understand why some POC buy into this Respectability and Assimilation thing to ACTUALLY TALK ABOUT what assimilation IS and how it worked out for the cultures that chose it and what was gained and what was lost and who is offered the option of assimilation and who will always always be at the back of the line and why. You can say “Dismantle White Supremacy” all you like but unless you understand what it IS and why people buy in it will be an empty slogan. If you really want to dismantle a thing, you need to know how it works, you need to see how the pieces interact, you need to find the weak spots and critical gears and THEN jam your crowbar in the cracks.

And like, GENDER! Do you realize we haven’t even HAD a conversation about what it means to be cisgender? Is it having a strong internal sense of being the gender you were assigned at birth? Is it feeling like your gender identity IS tied to your sexual organs, or your reproductive capacity? Seriously I have talked with AFAB people who have had hysterectomies and feel like their gender identity has changed because of it, is that grief or mental illness or is that how their experience of gender works? Is being cisgender feeling like the way you were raised is what has determined your gender now? Is it not caring about your gender and just going with the label you were assigned at birth because it causes you no grief and the clothing in that section of the store fits your body better than the stuff in the other section? Are ALL OF THEM valid ways to exist as a cisgender person? Is being cis as vibrant and varied as all the ways a person can be trans? WE DON’T KNOW BECAUSE WE WON’T TALK ABOUT IT. No, we’re still stuck with at most the dichotomy between “all people are born equal in every way and gender is used to oppress vagina-havers” and “Men and Women are the ONLY OPTIONS and they are VERY DIFFERENT and if you don’t like that you have OFFENDED ZEUS.” Fuckin, come on cis people, get your shit together this is embarrassing.

If we could acknowledge that every identity, even the culturally assumed defaults, are actual identities, that they merit introspection and discussion, that none of them are inherently better than any of the others, we could have so much more interesting conversations about who we are and how we want to exist together on this planet. But no. We’re still stuck on “do Black people deserve to get shot on the street?” “are trans people mentally ill?” “should immigrants go home or shut up?” And those questions are BORING and HARMFUL and I would really love if we could GET ON WITH THE BETTER SHIT.

Literate Chaotic / My Landlord Has Illegal Chickens
« on: October 03, 2020, 02:36:41 am »
The chickens don't know they're illegal
The dandelions just want to grow
The tree roots never read the ADA
No worms know the property lines

The squirrels cannot tell you their history
The pigeons don't know they're sick
The bears have no word for National Park
And moose honor no highway signs

Mosquitos can't tell you about malaria
The penguins aren't aware they're gay
Bald eagles never heard of America
Jellies don't know they're not fish

Whales don't sing of letters of writ
Corpse flowers don't know they stink
Polar bears don't know what oil is
The moths only think of the light

Mushrooms don't know about fairy tales
The raccoons don't understand trash
The chickens don't know they're illegal
The weeds just want to live

Apple Talk / 2020 got RBG
« on: September 19, 2020, 01:00:37 am »
Drop them f-bombs here

Apple Talk / Definition of a Sandwich
« on: August 25, 2020, 12:55:17 am »
Definition of a Sandwich, Part 1

A sandwich is not
Two people on either side
Under the covers
In a dark room
With your body between
And your brain quiet
Because the caveman running your limbic system
Is finally at peace
Knowing that if a bear shows up
It will have to eat someone else
Before you

Literate Chaotic / What's In The Bag?
« on: August 09, 2020, 03:26:34 am »
Her bag is full of broken things
That broken boys have left behind
Bits of bones and breathless moans
Best not to pay them any mind

She carries with her trophies grim
Shards of love notes, tears and screams
Bloodstains and last trains
And the smell of strangers' rooms

A hundred and one fermented hearts
Hands that wandered, eyes that stared
their lost shirts and old hurts
Cataloged and tucked away

She does not need these broken things
But still she keeps collecting
Her knives are sharp and her dance card full
Because boys are weak
And the flesh is willing

Literate Chaotic / Time Travel Bridge
« on: August 09, 2020, 03:26:02 am »
How do you pack for the end of the Universe?
Turns out, it's pretty much the same as any other trip
She grabs a bottle of water, some granola bars
A few extra bandanas in case there is teargas
Or the mask she is wearing soaks through
Oh, god, how is she going to explain the masks?
She takes a rock, oblong and gray and worn down at a strange angle
Pock marked and paint stained from its time on the street
On the spot where she stood
And marched between the battle lines
And helped everyone live to fight another day
Ascendant and terrified and out of her mind
A good rock
A rock her past self will know
A rock her past self might have in her bag, too
Earbuds for her phone, still sitting on its' charger
The damn thing can't hold up as long as it used to
Wearing down like the rest of the Universe
Winding up to a finale no one can really articulate
But everyone feels coming
It's okay for the Universe to end in August, really
She grabs her back of good luck
Ganesha and a pentacle, sacrificial keychain knife and rosewood rosary
And the tokens of her beloved dead.
She is wearing sensible shoes
She is wearing shorts under her skirt
She has extra socks but no umbrella
If this works there will be rain
And she wants to be soaked through
He told her god was in the rain and she went looking
But all she found was a stubborn cough
And concerned bystanders hoping she wasn't on the roof to jump
And she looks at the other things
Because there is more than one way to end the Universe
She packs comfort in the form of folded paper
Giftwrapped resilience and stubborn, honest hope
A first aid kit and gloves because you never know
A key that goes to nowhere
And a key to get back home
She checks the time
And the other time
Kisses her husband as he sleeps
And goes out to the bridge that breaks reality

Literate Chaotic / Still Love You, Buddy
« on: August 09, 2020, 03:25:12 am »
I am wearing white and I am a widow with the smallest of "w"s
My grief lower case, beneath the bar, lesser than
I am walking the river side and singing my sadness
To the egrets and herons and the bakery vans across the way

I am wearing white and my smallest of "w"s is as invisible
As the infinite heart I am shoving back in the closet
Painted over with lipstick, brushed out of my hair
Buttoned under shirts that say "attractive librarian" but not "sexy"

I am wearing white and the smallest of "w"s is screaming
Into the infinite ocean that the Atlantic can only dream of
Because the world does not stop for grief but I am still here
Not ready to walk alone or hold my own umbrella

I am wearing white and my smallest of "w"s is healing
But some wounds don't leave scars, they leave piercings
Holes that don't weep and but never close back over
My heart is cracked open and I can feel everything

Or Kill Me / Goddamn Girl
« on: August 01, 2020, 09:07:56 pm »
Goddamn girl you are worth fighting for and you are worth your bullshit
You have to remember there are people who love you with their whole hearts
Even when you aren’t looking
People who will hold you in your weakness and your crazy
Who want better for you than this
Get your shit together
Make something beautiful out of this hole in your chest
Fuck somebody who wants to fuck you
Cry and scream and dig your nails in
Feel alive for five seconds
Do something that makes you want to keep breathing
To wake up tomorrow
You know you can't keep torturing yourself like this
He is not worth it no amount of dick in the world is worth it
You dumbfuck get up off the ground already
And live

Literate Chaotic / Love is Not Respect
« on: July 11, 2020, 02:34:34 am »
Love is not respect
It is not earned
Is not evaluated
It is not answerable to

Love is not up for debate
It is unreasonable
Uninterested in your dignity
Or better judgment

Love is not comfort
Not serendipity
Not complacency
It is not settled for

Love is not bribeable
Is not reliable
It does not take criticism
Constructive or otherwise

Love is not respect
It cannot be won
Or persuaded
It is not answerable to

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