internal rhymes

Annotating Effectively

Not to brag, but if there is anything I have mastered so far in my high school career, it is the art of annotating poetry and prose for close text analysis. This guide will focus primarily on close-text analysis, but will also touch on a full annotation of a larger piece. Basically, I will be giving you a few different techniques given to me by my English teacher, as well as a few that I have learned on my own! Enjoy!

{ Some of the names are weird because my english teacher is a hilarious person! }


  • What: Basically coondog is all about “sniffing out” motifs and symbols. So for example, when reading a series of poems, if you realize there is a lot of references to the ocean, go through from the beginning with a highlighter and highlight every single reference to the ocean you can find – whether it literally mentions something like “waves” or “fish”, or is far more subtle.
  • Why: Using coondog is extremely helpful, especially as writing about a motif is a great starting point for an essay or paragraph. If you are in the IB program, motifs are awesome for anything from an English extended essay to your unseen oral commentary. Remember, a motif can vary! Some examples of some I have seen commonly are: water, corporeal, animals, time of day, cosmic, textile, etc.
  • My English Teacher came up with the name (I think it comes from one of her crazy life stories haha)


  • Who: Who are the characters? What is the point of view?
  • What: What happened in the piece (paraphrase)?
  • Where: What is the setting? How does the setting effect the piece?
  • Why: Why did the author do _______?
  • When: When was the piece written?
  • How: How does the author create the feeling of ________?

Read Aloud Silently

  • What: This is basically just making sure you hear the piece in your head as you read it. This is extremely important while reading poetry.
  • Why: Reading aloud silently will you help you catch so many things you wouldn’t by just skimming through it. Things like internal rhyme, rhythm, onomatopoeia, tone, consonance/assonance, cacophony/euphony, etc. will all become more obvious. This also ensures that you don’t skim past a line or anything.
  • Even if you hate every single other tip I have given you, just use this one and you will benefit incredibly.


  • Title: Read the title before reading the piece. Is it an allusion? What does it connote? Does it reveal anything about the novel?
  • Irony: Look for irony and humour in the piece. Both are excellent to write about, so keep your brain peeled!
  • Paraphrase: After you finish reading everything, think about what literally happened in the piece. Do this before finding the ‘sub-text’.
  • Connotation: Time for sub-text! What is the piece saying indirectly? As in what is it trying to reveal other than the literal happenings of the work? Ladies and Gentlemen, it is time to read underneath the lines!
  • Atmosphere: Highlight anything that reveals the tone/atmosphere of the piece. Highlight any hints you find that make you think the story is shifting in one way or another.
  • Shift: Find any narrative shifts. This could be anything from a shift in tone, to a shift in point of view, to a shift in the characters feelings.
  • Title: Now that you have examined the piece, look back at the title and think about it’s relevance. Were you right when you looked at it the first time? Or did it reveal a hint about the ending?
  • Theme: Now it’s time to put it all together! What is underneath the piece? What is the author trying to convey? Remember the theme will often be something profound and important!


  • Beginning & End
  • Never skip your beginning and ending as I personally feel as if they are perhaps the most revealing sections. The beginning will set the tone and mood for the poem, while the end will ultimately reveal the theme. When examining the beginning and end, one way to comprehend what happened in the piece is to map out where it started, and where it finished, and fill out (with quotes) how the narrator/characters got there. This is most helpful with poetry or prose excerpts as novels would have wayyyyy to much going on in the middle.


  • Poetry has feelings. Yup. That’s a thing.
  • So, remember, atmosphere and tone are incredibly important. Write down how the poem makes you feel, how the poet might have felt when they were writing it, how the characters/speaker feels about the situation – any feeling word that comes to mind will be significant when you talk about the atmosphere of the overall poem! Plus it will give you a more thorough understanding of the premise :)

Handy Dandy Things to Watch For!

  • Bored of talking about Simile’s and Alliteration? Here are some other things (often a little more rare) that are almost always relevant when annotating poetry (and a lot of prose as well!)
  • Allusion: I promise you, there is almost always allusion in poetry. Biblical will probably be the most common allusion you see (in Western literature), and it is extremely easy and effective to talk about it. Allusion to mythology is also common, and is often used in order to show the universality (through space and time) of a specific theme.
  • Elevated/Archaic Language: Always keep an eye out for this, it is extremely
  • Parallel Structure/Anaphora: You can never go wrong with parallel structure and anaphora as they will exist often! It doesn’t have to be a perfect parallel structure, it always elevates and intensifies a piece of poetry or prose.
  • Structure: In poetry especially, sentence/stanza structure is extremely significant. Look at the length of each line? Is it short-long-short-long line structure for the first few stanzas and then all of a sudden just a rhyming couplet of two short lines? Mention this! Talk about why this might be. Also keep an eye out for the actual structure of the stanzas on the page! This is not on accident, poets often put thought into the way it will look printed out. Plus, if you are unsure, you can always say “perhaps” to keep yourself save. Remember rhythm, syntax, enjambment, and general structure are your friend!

My Method (close-text, small section) ~ This is how I annotate for unseen timed commentary’s (but it is effective for all annotation!)

  1. Read aloud silently.
  2. Write down the general tone/feeling I get from the piece.
  3. Read second time focusing on a possible theme.
  4. Underline any poignant/interesting/beautiful imagery (as guess what, this is usually the best stuff to talk about in your paper!)
  5. Write down a tentative theme and/or thesis (just off of what you get out of the poem the first time around – don’t worry, this isn’t permanent!)
  6. Why did you pick that thesis/that theme to work with? Think of 2+ points that support your thesis.
  7. Highlight any quotes that support these points.
  8. And there you go, a body for your essay is completed.
  9. Annotate with more specific notes towards each highlighted section. This is when you think of literary techniques used like simile, alliteration, onomatopoeia, etc.

For a Whole Book / Set of Poems:

  1. As you read the book, highlight any interesting/potentially useful quote.
  2. Let’s say you finish reading for the day after an hour. At that point, open a word document (or notebook), and record every quote you have found in different categories (include page numbers!!!!!).
  3. Categories could be things like: John Doe’s Character Exposition, Water Motif, Setting & Context, etc. etc.
  4. There are a few perks to doing this. First of all, you have all your quotes sorted, chronologically. This means that when looking at something like character development, you have a list of interesting quotes in the order of them happening thus basically creating a skeleton of their character arc! Second of all, having quotes in a large word document makes it far easier to find them! You can use command-F (if on a Mac), and search for a specific word/quote. This way, you don’t find yourself wasting time tracking down one tiny detail for an essay. Another perk is that by recording a few chapters wort of quotes at a time, you won’t be overwhelmed by hundreds of highlight marks throughout your book after you have finished reading. This basically ensures that once you have finished reading, all you have to do is sit down and write! No more spending hours searching for that one perfect quote in a 400 page novel!
There isn’t much more I can possibly take
I’m a fraying rope that’s about to break
I’m tired of fighting; I’m tired of being strong
Happiness is short-lived and the days feel long
When my opponent is me – there’s no way to win
I’m stuck fighting this battle I don’t want to be in
I’m at war with myself and it all feels so wrong
Mind, Body, Spirit… why can’t we just get along?
—  Ranata Suzuki  |  Mind, Body, Spirit

Top tier diva names

Gladys Knight - Gladys is like a classic lunch lady name but together with Knight I think the juxtaposition really elevates the whole name. your gentle elderly lunch lady Gladys plus the martial Knight. its a beautiful name, one of my favorites. Since I love the surname Knight so much, a mention also to Jean Knight, also a strong name, and whoever else is named Knight

Aretha Franklin - I dont know if appraising this name can be separated from its reputation but I just feel a power emanating from it. Aretha is a unique name and then Franklin, a la Franklin D. Roosevelt, Benjamin Franklin, adds this horn-rimmed-glasses sturdy statesman air to it. Another great name

Minnie Riperton - This name is just fantastic because Minnie is the cutest name you could think of, borderline twee. Minnie for Minnie Mouse, or miniature in miniature, very appropriate for the sweet woman with flowers in her hair and whistles everywhere.. but then suddenly RIPERTON hits you its aggressive and unexpected and more great contrast

Celia Cruz - The two Cs bring symmetry but the different pronunciations of the letter keep the name flowing. I also just really like the sound of the surname Cruz, and the look of the letter Z in a name

Selena - I think picking a mononym is cheating because they’re inherently catchy anyway (e.g. I will omit Beyoncé, Rihanna, Sade, Shakira, etc. from this list because mononyms are just cool) but Selena is an exceptionally good mononym because its so classic to go with her combination of old-school and modern sounds and her classic look. Selena the singing moon

Etta James - simple but very very good name as with Aretha combines a solid given name with a more masculine surname that just sound excellent and powerful together

Janet Jackson - alliteration AND assonance. hello!

Billie Holiday - an ambiguously gendered given name plus a real noun for the surname. A fantastic, winning combination

Donna Summer - again, the two syllable given name, real noun surname. 10/10! And on top of that I think “summer” pithily captures the heat of her music and the disco era

Celine Dion - Now im conflicted about this one because it rolls off the tongue like I can’t think of a simile but something really smooth and rolly, but on the other hand it’s French and I hate French

Chaka Khan - I think its nearly always a winner to have a real title in your name a la Knight or Khan. Very good name because it’s a concise three syllables and incorporates the underappreciated K-vowel sound not once but twice, and with internal rhyme on top of that

Mid tier diva names

Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Diana Ross, Tina Turner, Natalie Cole, many others - I grouped these together because they’re not bad names but they also could sound like regular woman on the street names compared to the prodigious talent (“[Diana]… is talented sometimes”) and immense personality of the women they are each attached to. But sometimes that’s better. Allow your work to speak for itself I suppose

Mary J. Blige - I think this is a good name actually but I think it comes down to the J. The J. adds a Sriracha-like kick between a normal, pretty name and the cool, cutting surname Blige, but I knocked the name down to this tier because sometimes people say it “Blidge” and one time Madonna spelled it Blidge and I always think about that now when I see the name, and Blidge is not good sounding

Christina Aguilera - Im conflicted about this name; the obvious Peninsular source of the surname makes it sound pretty cool and it probably has something to do with eagles, and eagles are cool, but on the other hand taken as a whole it sounds something like her singing: many syllables that may not be logically or pleasingly spaced and ordered

Britney Spears - I think this should sound cool but when I think of Spears I just think of pickle spears. 

Roberta Flack - Roberta is a great given name. Also, her middle name is Cleopatra. But Flack/Flak carries such a negative connotation it weighs down the rest of the name. Also speaking of Flak, Roberta Flack has an entire section on her Wikipedia page entitled “Critical reputation” that is various critics dragging her for being boring

Lesser tier diva names

Most successful singers have at least mid tier level names so most of these women aren’t like mega stars like most of the above, otherwise I couldn’t think of any names

Angela Winbush - I just think anything with -bush in the name is an inelegant stage name. Bushes arent generally elegant, trees >

Patrice Rushen - cool individual elements but together, very clunky to get out of the mouth it is like your tongue has to do a U-turn

Jennifer Lopez - J Lo can’t sing!!!!!

Phyllis Hyman - not to be the kid that laughs in class at the number 69 but Hyman is not a good surname and according to Wikipedia its sometimes a derivation of the Hebrew Chai and Idk how when or why it became Hymen

Angela Bofill - I just think Bofill is not a great surname for a musical act because Bo- is a clumsy first syllable and the following syllable has to make or break it and -fill is just not the syllable to make it

The Eminem Problem

So I just had to write this after watching that cypher and hearing the reactions to it.

Okay, what Eminem did was much appreciated. If any rapper whose fan base had a large percentage of Fascists/Trump Supporters, it was his. Because Em cultivated the angry white boy. His music, from his antics, dislike for women, and rage that brought white men into rap. His entire persona is an angry white boy’s colonial fantasy. White man tries to be learn about cultural practice. White boy is not accepted by culture in spite of being really good. White boy breaks out and proves he is exceptional and better at the culture than people it belongs to. So of course, they would gravitate towards Eminem.

What I appreciate is that what Em did actually mattered because of the previous point. Not just because he is white. He was a paragon for these angry ass white men out here. So when Eminem says that you ain’t shit, then it means more because of that. I am not sure if it was Em’s intention of cultivated these fandoms because he has always been on the left side of Liberalism(Mosh). Sure, he is a homophobe who routinely talked shit about women in a way that he incites violence against them, but dude is a democrat. He has always been outspoken politically. He just did not revolve around being political.

Of course, when you have white nationalist anthems like White Trash Party(not sure if parody or serious), I guess they could have not gotten the memo. 

However, white people just make shit soooo much worse. I just wish sometimes we could just listen to shit in an echo chamber away from white people because you motherfuckers have this way of bringing shit down. Em’s message alone without the context of racism and white supremacy was magnificent and well said. His message in it…fuck. 

This not me saying Em is not talened because dude is an excellent rapper. An amazing one. We know dude can spit. I know dude could spit when I was rapping the entire Lose Yourself verse. I knew dude could spit when I was memorizing his verse in Forever. Eminem is an insane lyricist with crazy internal rhymes in his lines and that cypher was a prime example of his style.

Here is what Liberal Keith Olbermann said

Eminem was not the only rapper who spoke against Trump. YG wrote a song about him. Run the Jewels centered an entire album around Trump. Busta Rhymes, Talib Kweli, Mos Def went to the Grammy’s and basically called out Trump for his anti-Muslim rhetoric.  I could go on. Hip-hop, collectively has spoken out against Donald fucking Trump.

But when this white boy does it, it gets clout like no other. And sure, he is talented, but there are plenty of talented rappers out there that do not get the clout Em gets. Whether it is in style(GZA, Busta Rhymes), viciousness(Killer Mike, Ice Cube), lyricism(Andre 300, Talib Kweli, Nas, Lupe Fiasco before he lost his mind), or consciousness, Eminem is always held up as the exception to the rest of them because he is white. AND that pisses a lot of people off.

Em’s music is seen as less misogynistic than most rappers when he has created hits such as B**ch with D12, talked about killing his wife Kim and throwing her in the trunk, spoken very ill of his mother several times. Em’s music is seen as less drug abusive and less about sex when we know that is bullshit. The guy was on drugs when he made Relapse for fuck’s sake. Eminem always gets miles for the inch that he travels. 

I am not trying to diminish what Eminem did. It’s more that I am trying to push back against the notion that what Em did was singular.

Some thoughts on improving writing

Someone asked me a question in chat, and I thought my response might be interesting to more than just an individual.

I really only have two things that I’m good at, but they are very good skills to have. I’m good at:

1. Knowing when I’m doing something incorrectly
2. Figuring out how to do it right

If you really want to start radically improving your writing (your anything, really), it helps to be brutally honest about what your current skill level is, and to identify areas where you can improve. 

Once you identify areas where you are weak, you can then target improvement on that specific area.

So below the cut is a list of skils necessary for writing fiction. It’s not complete, obviously, but it’s a decent start for identifying what you are and are not good at.

Keep reading


“Infinite” is Eminem’s best song. As far as I’m concerned, there’s isn’t another that even comes close. It’s a masterpiece of lyricism with rhyme schemes that leave your aural senses overwhelmed. Rhymes spilling into the next stanza that continue internally as new rhymes emerge in the middle of the new line. This kind of complex language extending throughout the entire song is mind-blowing.

This title track comes from Eminem’s solo debut of the same name. The common criticism of this era of Eminem’s work is that he hadn’t quite found his own sound/voice yet – That it’s just derivative of the works of Nas and AZ, two of the most influential MCs of the era. While this is largely indisputable, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still extraordinarily good writing.

I always find myself in awe of the line at the end of the second verse “It eases you mentally, gently, sentimentally, instrumentally with entity, dementedly meant to be infinite.” No matter how many times I try, I can’t seem to wrap my brain around the scansion of these words. It’s so impressive.

If Eminem had continued down this road, I would probably like him a whole lot more, but there’s no way he would’ve become as popular as he became. Part of what made him stand out once he became popular was that he was unique in the hip hop world. While the Infinite album isn’t unique, it’s most definitely my favorite.

anonymous asked:

Do you have any tips for writing fansongs?

I’ve gotten this ask a few times this past month and I haven’t answered it yet, and I’m sorry about that :( I was trying to think of something new I haven’t already said. For me writing fansongs is the same as writing any song so this is just general song advice.

I have a songwriting tag where I’ve said a few things in the past…as for new advice that’s not in there, Alliteration and Internal rhyme is something that really adds to a song so i think I’ll talk about those…

Alliteration is when you group words with similar sounds in them together for emphasis “peaceful place, last love, hard heart” etc.

And internal rhyme is trying to rhyme a lot of things at different parts of the song and not just one word at the end of each line. The more words rhyme in your song in organic places the better it will flow imo. 

For example I’ve bolded all the grouped sounds, rhymes and quasi-rhymes I intentionally included in this verse of a song I wrote-

“A feral beast, more thorn than paw
claws the rooster from his nest, for lest he dare to crow
I’ll aim again to make God blind
lay my pelt upon your shrine, as the sun sets one last time
to the cry of the wolf and the song of the sparrow

hope that helps :)

anonymous asked:

I was wondering what interested you about your religion enough to convert to it,I'm sorry if This is to personal a question,and I hope I haven't offended you.(I myself am not religious)

I am fine with personal questions, anon, so it’s okay. Well to be honest with you it was a lot of things that drew me to Islam. First off, I’d like to say that I’ve always been a very logical person. I like clear cut, direct facts, and that’s why I’m a physics student haha. When I was first in my ‘religion search phase’, most of the ones I had come across were based off spirituality and all these lovely things that I personally couldn’t find a religion in as they seemed more like an ideology than a religion to follow. I gave Judaism some thought, but although I have come to have a soft spot for their familial values, It wasn’t enough for me to convert. As for Christianity, and I know a lot of Christians say this chapter is allegorical, but I was ready to rule it out by the first chapter of the book of genesis. As I said as a person who likes facts, reading something like the Earth and plants were created first and then the sun was a bit too far fetched to commit to. I did continue reading, and searching, but that only made me shy away from it further. I think the quote i’d use her is ‘so you began to follow a religion and called it “love” in disguise because love can be good but love can be blind’. The worshiping of Jesus is also a man made invention so again, Christianity is a religion I heavily shy away from. When I came to read the Quran (I am half arab so I started reading it in Arabic, altho it was very hard at times, it is the only way to see its beauty, none arab Muslims get shown this beauty by either going through the steep road of learning Arabic, or us Arab speakers doing our prophet given duty of teaching the message of God to humanity when they ask to ofc) I think I was really surprised by how phonic and beautifully strung it is. The internal rhythm, the rhyming that lasted an entire chapter, the words were always strong, never even remotely colloquial, and I always still say the book you truly feel the power of a God from is the Quran, in fact in the shortest chapter of the quran there are 11 linguistic devices used in 3 words, including a prophecy that came true. And that is not even a new concept to the Quran, the language of it in itself is a miracle, there is a nice example of this in a lecture i quite like And a good chapter showing how phonic it is   I also really appreciated how even if the words were incredibly poetic, it was still a very direct book. I liked the morals behind it. Equity, freedom of thought, justice, freeing of slaves, kindness, compassion, pity, tolerance, brotherhood, love, it’s peaceful but it’s not pacifist, the power of God truly comes to show in the format that’s like ‘here is why you should believe, here are things you should keep in mind if you do..if you dont want to, there is no compulsion in anything, its not exactly like God who created this entire universe needs you, but if you do want to save yourself from a hell so gruesome it makes your days on earth feel like hours,then I suggest you have an open mind’. I also liked the story of creation, in the sense that it wasn’t a damnation onto Earth as in the bible, I also liked how the angels themselves predicted how humanity would act with the blood shed and corruption. Stories of prophets even though had their fair share of glittery miracles, were still logical. For example: Jesus’s birth in the Quran is a lot less fun than in the bible, there are no mangers or Josephs or singing angels, it’s a woman in hard labor, in the middle of the desert screaming in agony, at some point even hoping she would just die instead of face all of this pain and probable future humiliation on her own, until God comforts in a miracle her through her own child, and surprisingly it feels a whole lot more authentic and touching than a singing angel. I personally prefer this to be the first miracle rather than water to wine one haha ‘So she conceived him, and she withdrew with him to a remote place.And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm tree. She said, “Oh, I wish I had died before this and was in oblivion, forgotten.” But he called her from below her, “Do not grieve; your Lord has provided beneath you a stream. And shake toward you the trunk of the palm tree; it will drop upon you ripe, fresh dates.So eat and drink and be contented. And if you see from among humanity anyone, say, ‘Indeed, I have vowed to the Most Merciful abstention, so I will not speak today to [any] man.’ ”Then she brought him to her people, carrying him. They said, “O Mary, you have certainly done a thing unprecedented.O sister of Aaron, your father was not a man of evil, nor was your mother unchaste.”So she pointed to him. They said, “How can we speak to one who is in the cradle a child?”[Jesus] said, “Indeed, I am the servant of God . He has given me the Scripture and made me a prophet. And He has made me blessed wherever I am and has enjoined upon me prayer and charity as long as I remain alive And [made me] dutiful to my mother, and He has not made me a wretched tyrant.And peace is on me the day I was born and the day I will die and the day I am raised alive.”

Okay, so if there are so many miracles which seem outside the scope of logic, and you are a person of science how did you convert? I think the actual time where I started crying realizing I was already a Muslim was when I was reading the verse ‘And the heaven We constructed with strength, and indeed, We are [its] expander. ‘. The Quran is full of science that in no way shape or form was known to the 7th century arabians living in a desert. From the expansion of the universe, to the embryonic development, to the orbit of the planets, to the reflection of light and to the finger prints we have. There is a video mentioning most of the scientific miracles of the Quran here It also predicted battle outcomes after the prophets death, and identified points in the land that were yet to be known to humanity and then it hit me that all of this was revealed to man 1400 years ago,to a man who could not read or write but would just recite what he was told. That was when I fell in love with not only the merciful God of islam (who said when he first created the universe he decreed upon himself that his mercy precedes his anger) but truly the greatest man to have walked this earth Mohammed Ibnu Abdullah. If I were to explain this mans appeal, and how strong his message was I’d use his followers to vouch for it, The first muslims were tortured severely, and the first martyr in Islam was  a woman named Sumayah, who was stabbed in her privates,spat on, and murdered but she still would not go back on her faith no matter what they did to her. Another story of a companion,a black slave called Bilal Ibn Rabah who was forced to labor with a sizzling hot rock on his back, as well as whipped and yet proclaimed ‘ahad, ahad’ ‘one God, one God’ to the pagans of Arabia 

what drew them individually to Islam was (at first) the man who’s message demanded for womens rights at a time were women were buried alive, and demanded rights for black people saying that there is no difference between a black man and a white man except by righteousness and good action. He was soft and lenient, but still a respected leader. A man who he didnt even let animal rights out of his sight, forbidding his followers from even showing the cattle the knife when you slay it to eat it as not to scare it ‘you have no right to kill the animal twice’, a man who entered the city that tortured him, threw him out with his head hung low saying ‘today is the day of forgiveness’ , a man who walked through a city that stoned him until his shoe was filed with his blood yet harbored no ill feelings to the people, saying there might be a future believer among them, a man who just as God stated is ‘a mercy to all of man kind’ Here is a series about him and a slam poem about terrorists tainting his name

Reading his stories, his sayings and the book of God that he recited made me whole heartedly believe in this religion. Islam brings me ease of mind, I love it more and more the more I read and search into it (i recommend the blog @partytilfajr for clearing up any questions you might have and I can help in any way too), it makes reasonable and scientific sense and yet it is such a beautiful miraculous message. It mixes ideology and faith, but still encourages free thinking and freedom and I am proud to say I have submitted my will to God and I bear witness that there is only one God and Mohammed is his final messenger  😊 

To my past atheist self I say

He Was The Creator of the Universe, for all we know even More
and So What
if we can’t see him, i mean what you acting like our universe is small
i mean there still so much we’re still yet to explore
i mean there’s still so many things as human beings we still haven’t
or saw
i mean our eyes can’t even handle the sight of the Sun
so how can we possibly handle the sight of our Lord

In the sixties, that phrase [“I’d love to turn you on”] signaled Dr. Timothy Leary and LSD, especially to the BBC, which banned the song because of the drug reference. But with Lennon, who reveled in puns, wordplay, verbal sleight of hand, you could never be so literal. Maybe it’s because I know Lennon was always ahead of his time, but I hear the impulse to use the phrase the way we do now, as an omnibus for stimulation—to turn you on to a book or film, to turn you on sexually, or simply to get you going. (The phrase “blew his mind” is similarly ambiguous, multivalent.) It interests me in all respects that the line, which John called “a beautiful little lick,” was actually Paul’s, that it made Paul think of John, and that, in the song, John sings it to introduce his collaborator, Paul. “Now and then we really turn each other on with a bit of song,” John said much later, thinking back to the moment.

All my life I’ve heard variously that John was the artist and Paul something less […]. The point is, the whole was so much more than the sum of the four independent parts. How could it not have been? And how rare that they all stuck it out as four for so long. The history of rock is full of bands with one shimmering frontman and secondary players. Only the Beatles had two equal and versatile musicians who, beyond their singing, writing, and playing, were also magnetically handsome, photogenic, intelligent, and charming. The nature of such artists is to go it alone at the lead. “A Day in the Life” makes me see how close John and Paul were, how well they understood and appreciated each other as artists, how their songs came from an oscillating process of writerly separation and then joining together, how skillful they were, a little universe of invention—all those vivid images and internal rhymes turned out as casually as woodworkers with a lathe. In this respect, it’s “A Day in the Life” of a songwriting team, working alone, coming together by delivering parts to each other’s houses, helping, suggesting, competing, vitiating, and then improving, pushing each other even as they offer their own view of things.

—  Nicholas Dawidoff on ‘A Day In The Life’, c/o In Their Lives: Great Writers on Great Beatles Songs. (2017)

For today’s special Digital #Ham4Ham show, Ron Chernow, author of Alexander Hamilton, sings the opening number of the show to congratulate Lin-Manuel on winning the Pulitzer Prize! #Ham4Ron

“Chernow said in an email interview that he was initially “intrigued, if a little skeptical” about the idea of telling Hamilton’s story through hip-hop and R&B. “Lin promised to educate me, and boy, did he succeed,” he said. “To give but one example, he pointed out that hip-hop contains lots of internal rhyme, and that you can pack masses of information into its dense lyrics.” The show’s opening song, less than five minutes long, “accurately distills” the first 40 pages of the book, according to Chernow.” [x]

The Strange Case of Dr. Jones and Mr. Hector

I was hanging out in one of @fighteramy‘s streams and she played a song from the Jekyll and Hyde musical, which then caused me to listen to the whole soundtrack from the musical and instantly become obsessed with it, which then led to me re-reading the entirety of the original Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (it’s only 96 pages and you can find it online), and long story short, here’s a Lab Buddies fic in the style of Robert Louis Stevenson.

Pain was not the whole of what Lalna had retrieved from the memory upload, but it was a large part, and by far the most palatable. At first he had not noticed the rest, or at least not remarked upon it; it came in fits and sputters, like rain upon a window, and at first left as much impression. He had known, of course, about the murders; had kept a tremendously close eye on them, both as a matter of personal interest and out of regard for scientific professionalism; and he had at times been taken by flights of dream or fancy wherein he would picture the scene as it must have fallen out. These brought him no pleasure, or if they did, he quickly quashed it or assigned it a more noble source; curiosity, perhaps, was responsible, or a delight in the impossibly tangled question of how such a monstrous Athena could have sprung, fully formed, from the restrained and laconic forehead of Dr. Jones.

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About Marta

My friend @assorted-alvin told me something about Marta that I finally encountered. Basically, if she catches you, she does once or twice say this line: “Your blood shall be the tokens of my virginity.” 

Now, there are some ways to interpret this. One sad way is that Marta is not a virgin. She may have been coerced to have sex with Knoth when she was younger. After all he calls her an “intimate” companion since childhood. The loss of one virginity does not signify the loss of the virginity of the spirit, flesh and soul. Marta has reservations on killing people. This is specified by the second letter where Knoth chastises her using rhetoric to show her that her conscience for committing murder is actually sloth (however, I find it interesting that Knoth does not say anytime anything that Marta does is “womanly” considering he was pretty stupid calling Laird possessing “womanly sin”). So, to remain pure in the eyes of “god” Marta, almost in a olden ritualistic way, is offering Blake’s blood in a chalice to show that she is still a virgin: Immaculate in body, soul and spirit. After all, in their gospels they refer to Cain as “uncircumcised” of heart” which pretty much means impure, unclean and completely filthy. 

A second way to interpret this is to show that Marta is a virgin in every single way. That she has not have sex with anyone. And the only way to prove her virginity then, without the act of consummation, would still be this ancient ritualistic way of offering the blood of a human sacrifice. The reference to “intimate” companion may just refer to being a close friend. Now, it is true Knoth has the incorrigible habits of a philanderer. Unused dialogues also show that he may have had sex with Val who either is an intersex individual or an eunuch. Also the word catamite is exactly that, a young “male” kept for sexual pleasures. If Val was seen as a male, though they are not really, it still would make sense. However, there is also a large possibility that Knoth didn’t or couldn’t have sex with everyone. If you see his size, his gait — this old man has trouble even walking and pretty much walks with a limp, with slow wobbling steps. The truth is that Knoth also suffers from syphilis perhaps other diseases so it could hurt his performance heavily. There could be some people he didn’t have sex with. Seeing also that Marta, Val, Laird and Nick have no yokemates or sexual partners we know of (though wonder how the latter got Syphilis; it can happen via other ways or they did once have sex), we should take them a bit away from the norm. Of course, Val is not straight and has proven that multiple times. They have interest in almost everyone including Blake and a woman named Ruth. 

Seeing that Marta has a large size and strength may have made a patriarchal, incestuous cult generally afraid of her to engage in any form of sex with fear of having themselves being cut down or castrated. Knoth may have also find it beneficial to not sleep with Marta . Rather given her height and weight, may have been given the role of sentinel from a young age. And this would provide use to Temple Gate. Seeing that Laird also uses Nick, a pretty much tall fellow if not taller than Marta, to keep the Scalled in check and is encouraged by Knoth to use violence this logic makes sense. People of the cult avoid Marta like the plague. She  even states: “I will thy plague and thy ransom.” So, she seems to feel that she is a colossal figure that acts as a “disinfectant”, as a “bandage to the wound” to people who stray. She sometimes states to Blake, upon catching him: “The stray sheep must be corrected” and “You play the whore in my father’s house.”  Basically, being the person to uphold the crooked sense of justice in Temple Gate.

Additionally, Marta pretty much rhymes a lot of what she says. Aside that, later on you can hear about infants being dashed to bits and counting the enemies of “god” as her own enemies: those who rise against “god” (not knowing her “god” is actually Murkoff. Satan inimical Deus indeed). If you don’t rush towards the first encounter and wait, you can hear what she talks about, more or less, and see that they are like rhyming couplets: 

  1. In the Book of Life of The Lamb Slain.
  2. A Blade’s baptism for the Spider Eyed Lamb.”
  3. By the crooked knife, Legion fettered every man chained.” 
  4. Every man that hath a ear, so he may leadeth in captivity.” 
  5. Bleeds false heaven’s fear, beast seeds the cracked city.”
  6. From seas heaven borne lion dragon leopard.” 
  7. Blasphemous seven horns of the mustard scion shepherd.”
  8. Here is the patience, and the faith of the saints.” 
  9. The Lamb slain, foundation of the world.”
  10. And the pain found stained by the nation of the sword.”
  11. Deceiveth them that dwell on the earth.”
  12. Bleed the wench before hell after birth.” 
  13. Earthquakes flames thunder.”
  14. Lake carrion, flayed woman, graves under Savior’s wedding supper.”
  15. He hath judged the great whore. Writ: Blood, Abram’s worship.” 
  16. That ye may eat the flesh of kings, mighty men and horses.” 
  17. Fore death, and the righteous sing rightly there before him.”
  18. Temple Gate cuts the whore, bleed a price, the true ascend.” 
  19. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all amen.” 

These are not completely in chronological order and the “4th” one I had to jot down from memory. You can actually see the rhymes and the internal rhymes of these sayings. It also helps build some foundation on Temple Gate’s religion which definitely borrows Christian imagery and some Abrahamic imagery but also reverses them or “perverts” them in a way. The cult is not Christian as it does not respect Christianity or Christian beliefs on any kind, though it would like to believe it is Christian. I am no expert in Christian imagery but I could tell some things were off because we players are meant to see some of those discrepancies without being experts. Why should there be chaos during the savior’s supper? Armageddon is not a wedding feast. Similarly, there is lamb and lion and dragon imageries in Christianity. However, there is no spider-eyed Lamb that I know of.

(There are is a video of Marta’s dialogues. Some of her lines are songs. Personally, it is great the way final game had her just raspily quoting Ezekiel gospel quotes rather just sing. But here is the link if you are interested hearting the Marta dialogues:

If we look at the well known William Blake’s imagery from Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience (wonder if Blake is also an allusion to those things) you will see that Blake talks fondly of the Lamb and that the Tiger burning bright in the night. Blake is in awe of God because he has made the Lamb and he also made the Tiger. William Blake writes:

“Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger Tyger burning bright,
In the forests of the night:
What immortal hand or eye,
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?“

So, you can see that Blake likes the Tiger as well and uses it as a symbol to understand God. In that case, there is no need for God to make “spider-eyed lambs” when God has made the Tiger, and as Marta says, Lion, dragon and leopard. The dragon is traditionally I think an antagonistic figure in Christianity. So, Marta may be saying aside Temple Gate the world bears them though she also says slaying the Lamb built the foundation of the world. She also states of becoming this entity that eats the flesh of kings, mighty men and horses: this may be figurative but Laird doesn’t take this figuratively. 

Their “religion” is mostly based on bloodshed and the “whore who bears the antichrist” though I don’t think Christianity bases itself on any of these things. Obviously, The Testament of New Ezekiel uses Christian imagery but at the same time it does not follow any true Christian or Abrahamic tenets. The belief that there is a “whore” harbouring the antichrist born from Knoth and Knoth;s flock is also pretty non-viable. Knoth’s flock may have children with disabilities because of the fact they are inbreeding and incestuos like anything. It doesn’t mean the antichrist in any way. 

Marta herself shows some aspects of her beliefs when saying these lines and when she is killing people. She pretty much believes there is whore around and Temple Gate must “bleed a price” for the true to “ascend.” Though, she has her doubts. After all she doesn’t seem to believe in “righteous violence.” Yet, she plays the part of the sentinel because her society has no other place for her than to be that. She is too large and strong so perhaps no one wants her as a yokemate. We do not if she mothered any children or took care of them as Val. The only thing her society does is to make her the hound and avenging angel and she has become codependent on Knoth and that society (who wouldn’t, indoctrinated by The Towers and all of that) that gaining another form of freedom may not easily cross her mind. 

i just want everyone to love this line of hamilton as much as i do: 

like the internal rhyme, the assonance and dissonance???? the fact that almost every single word is involved in this ninefold masterpiece: “complicit in” “kissin’ it” “isn’t gon’” “listen to” “disciplined” “dissidents” “this is the” “difference” “this kid is” 

every time i hear this line i want to cry with the sheer beauty of it, if you can hear this line and not be impressed to tears you must have a rock for a heart idk what to tell you

The next time you want my hands in your hair, just remember that I won’t be there.

The next time your lips crave to be kissed, remember the chance that you missed.

The next time your body aches to be held, don’t forget that you put me through hell.

The next time you’re hurt and crying out for me, I’ll stand back and watch you bleed.

—  s.l.

if ur trying to get ur friends into hamilton here are some good reasons to convince them:

  • it’s about treasury secretary alexander hamilton but get this………he was actually really badass?????
  • non-white actors playing white ass founding fathers
  • the coolest dancing on broadway since newsies closed
  • the best song for a female trio since heathers closed
  • the slickest internal rhymes EVER (”i’m the oldest and the wittiest and the gossip in new york city is insidious”)
  • the saddest song in broadway history is in this musical
  • lyrics such as: “turn around bend over i’ll show you where my shoe fits” “sit down john you fat motherBLEEEEEEEP” and other choice selections
  • cabinet rap battles CABINET RAP BATTLES
  • just get them to listen to helpless + satisfied it will do the trick
  • john laurens
  • beyonce watched it one time
  • just do it