Fall

Dec. 12th, 2016 09:42 pm
zetasyanthis: (Default)
Fall of city, fall of heart,
fall of those we trusted,
fall of hope and candlelight,
and blasted hellscapes, rusted

fall of light, and fall of life
and fall of dust and heartbeats,
the world watches and pretends
they cannot see us deletes.

For that is what we would become
would not with dear time's passing
the world know we fought and bled,
and at the last, and died gasping.

We sought to stand as you have claimed
neighbor helping neighbor
but some amongst us with their hate
pushed you away, our savior.

And still we stand, now at the last,
white helmets far from gleaming
hoping against hope these poor souls
may one day 'member, dreaming

that though we lost and though we died
and though the world now darkened
these souls may dream of candlelight
and too kinship, then, hearken.

These tiny souls, these innocents,
the bullets closing in
cannot begin to understand
my weeping violin.

The choking dust is closer now,
air heavy, harsh with gas.
Barrel bombs, mortars, missile strikes
are sure to be our last.

But while the blue sky lives somewhere
somewhere trees are green
I'll raise music to candlelight
and with my strings, now keen.

For we will not escape this fate,
the shelling, far too rough,
our hopes and dreams, now bleeding out
are made of kinder stuff.

Remember us, these children here,
when we are dead and gone.
Remember dreams of candlelight.
Remember... comes the dawn.
zetasyanthis: (Default)
I just wrote and sent this email to the electors, with the subject "I'm scared too. >.<". 

I hope this letter finds you well, and that your days have been happier and less stressful than mine.

My name is Zeta Syanthis, and I am writing to you in the hope that you will read my story. I'm writing because I'm scared, and because my friends are being hurt. And because I know it's probably only a matter of time before I, myself, am.

Ever since President-Elect Donald Trump won the electoral college on November 8th, hate crimes against minorities have spiked to an unbelievable degree. I myself am a transgender citizen living in California, though I've only been here for two short years. (I moved here hoping against hope that I would be safe. >.<) Originally from Illinois, I went to school in Terre Haute, Indiana (downstate) and then lived in Arizona for almost 5 years, working as a cleared defense contractor during that time. I have no illusions about the threats we face, or about the need for a strong hand in government, but for the first time in my life I no longer feel safe in my own home. I no longer know if those I wish to serve want me here, or if those that do outnumber those who wish me dead. I hope you are one of the former. >.<

I do not know if you have ever felt as I do, whether here or abroad, but I can tell you it is a deep and terrible feeling, one that scarcely lets me get up each day. It as though a spike has been driven through my heart and chained to some dark place, and I do not know how to remove it. >.<

Already, we have lost folks, to that same depression which I battle daily. We have lost 9 that I know of to suicide, kind and gentle folks who lost hope upon seeing their hoped-for futures snatched away. Others are being killed, or chased down with hatchets, while all the while the KKK celebrates day after day. In our neighborhoods, pride flags are being burned while still attached to houses, black churches are being torched, and women's cars vandalized for even looking as though they might be Muslim. And that's to say nothing of the hateful words and symbols painted and etched into our lives.

I know you alone cannot stop this. And I do not put that responsibility at your feet. How could I? But I am asking, as one human to another, "*Please* do not do this to us." We have shed far too many tears already, and my heart cannot bear many more. >.<

Link summary:
http://www.wsoctv.com/news/local/transgender-woman-chased-attacked-with-hatchet-at-charlotte-park/467181395
http://www.washingtonblade.com/2016/06/16/rainbow-flag-burned-outside-adams-morgan-restaurant/
http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/2016/11/10/gay-pride-rainbow-flags-burned/93583280/
http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2016/11/16/hiker-targeted-with-car-vandalism-racist-note-over-head-scarf/
http://www.mercurynews.com/2016/10/14/leaked-video-shows-santa-clara-students-drawing-swastika-with-blood/
http://www.mercurynews.com/2016/09/21/swastikas-hateful-language-discovered-at-sjsu-residence-halls/
https://twitter.com/trashhalo/status/742386487937892353/photo/1
http://abc7news.com/news/church-womans-car-vandalized-with-swastikas-in-south-bay/1610855/
http://www.cnn.com/2016/11/02/us/mississippi-black-church-vandalized-vote-trump/

Orlando

Jun. 18th, 2016 08:07 pm
zetasyanthis: (Default)
[TW: Frank talk of religion-induced depression and tragic empathy with the shooter. If that puts you off, stop reading now rather than hating me later.]

I didn't want to write this, and I certainly never wanted to have to write this, but apparently I must. So many people just don't seem to understand what this means, or are missing it in the flurry of stories coming out right now.

The Orlando shooter was gay.

And that is really important.

It makes this a double tragedy.

Why? It makes all the difference in the world.

Self-hate is a powerful thing. Self-hate because you believe you are *damned* for something you cannot control or erase from yourself no matter what you do? That is a poison that will kill you. It's a poison that will twist your joy until you hate even more for daring to love those moments where you're really yourself. And it's a poison that I know all too well. I know it in myself, and I know it in my father; and I'm here to tell you the terrible depth of our mistake. I'm here to tell you that we failed.

I have been many dark places in my life, many places that I hope never to venture to again. The place Omar Mateen found himself in is one of them. Tragically, he was unable to escape.

I have no doubt that he had moments of joy in his life, as well as moments of sadness. All of us do. Even knowing his final act, I have no doubt that he likely found some solace at Pulse in his many visits there, clinging to a hope that this could be normal and safe, but never safe in his own mind. I know what it's like to feel unable to stop being *wrong*, to give in for a while, and to finally relapse back, hating yourself all the more. The force of religion, of true belief, can be put aside for a while. You can, with effort, push it away and be yourself for a little while, but you pay for it dearly later.

Faith vs. self is a cycle that repeats. It cycles again and again until something breaks. More often than not in America, it's faith, but not all are so lucky. The fact that many believe and continue to teach those in this vulnerable, pained state just exacerbates and already deadly conflict. Whether it's gay conversion therapy, or just everyday discrimination and abuse, it reinforces the despair you feel at never being good enough, never being able to be what God wants you to be. You feel like a failure when you give in, and more and more worthless every time you are forced to lie to others to protect yourself, to protect your job, to not be ostracized by your family. This internal struggle has many signs, most of them subtle or misunderstood, and *many* take their own lives when they break down from the stress.

Omar lost his battle late last week, and 49 others lost it with him.

Again, I know what this pain feels like. I know how deep it goes, how the very core of what you believe to be yourself rebels against the world, against other parts of yourself, against your beliefs and everything you have ever been taught. And I know what it feels like to lose that fight. I lost it 4 times that I can remember growing up, falling deeper into a depression I never understood I had. I remember the sweat, the late nights hiding at my computer, locking my door so that no one could see. I remember even using my own brother as a scapegoat, turning him in to avoid drawing suspicion that I might be looking at pornography myself. I still bare that shame. >.< I remember too, formatting my computer time after time, as though deleting everything and starting from a clean slate would work this time, that I would be stronger, better, that *I* would make God proud. And I remember failing, again and again.

I don't know how I survived that, and I certainly don't know what happened to push Omar over the edge, to turn his self-destructive tendencies outward on the community that *I have no doubt* would have loved to help him, any way they could. Many of us have fought through similar experiences, and I would not even be surprised if some of the others who died that night share my, and his story, albeit with different ends.

But he couldn't. He wouldn't. I have no doubt his hands shook as he made his final decisions, only to transition into that alarming, deliberative calm many settle into when facing certain death. I have no doubt that before that moment, he felt he had utterly failed. And I have no doubt that he hoped that his God might even even forgive him if he tried to make things right. His poison, the same poison that we stream onto televisions and teach in religious schools all across the country, won. And so he went to his favorite nightclub, and died. And 49 others died with him.

The police say that there were few signs of faith-based radicalization, though his abusive, angry behavior was something that raised a red flag with many. Though I don't *think* I ever reacted in that way, I know someone else who did, someone who hates himself for a whole variety of reasons. I know my dad. I know he lashed out at me because he cannot contain the anger and the despair he feels, the depression that overwhelms him daily and has for more years than I have known him. And I know he, much like Omar, suffers in silence, not seeking help, because he believes himself to be the failure.

I never thought, in a million years, I'd see a shade of myself in a mass shooter, but I have. I wish I could unsee what I have seen.
zetasyanthis: (Default)
A little bit of silence
A little bit of thought
A little bit of mischief
And love that life forgot

A little bundle sleeping
And curled through the night
A little kitten weeping
Alone at dawn's fresh light

These are the briefest moments,
the wings on which we fly,
the smallest of our fierceness,
by which we grace the sky.

So in this darkness airborne,
I write these sacred words,
To hold and keep a friendship,
a bond across the world.

Those moments tender, breathing,
those moments holding close,
those moments in the sunshine,
or broken on the coast.

Those moments in the darkness,
those moments all alone,
those moments that remind us,
where 'xactly lies our home.

Those moments broken, weeping,
those moments full and new,
those moments held and cherished,
I'd spend them all with you.

Those moments are all different,
though we all all the same,
and though in life and love and hate
we see through diff'rent frame.

But still we soar upon them,
those broken, tattered wings,
and hope to one day heal them,
with music-singing strings.

Our path will be a long one,
and not one lightly walked,
but though we tread in darkness,
never alone we walk.

For we are of the kindred,
those spirits bound and held,
those minds and souls and hearts whose tears
have all too often bled.

Though we honor the fallen,
and 'member those who've passed,
never will we surrender,
no matter what our path.

We are those few survivors,
those who've questioned self,
the ones who somehow made it,
against the whole world set.

And if there is a lesson,
from our hearts let it be,
that no matter what place, what time,
to serve humanity.

So let this little silence,
as it flies through the sky,
remind all those with tattered wings,
that you can and still fly.

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Zeta Syanthis

September 2017

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