proustitute, harassment, and staff's unresponsiveness
I have sent this message to the tumblr staff. I will no longer stand by and watch this cruelty continue. Tumblr should never be a place where people feel unsafe. I’m speaking out because proustitute is an important person in my life.
My name is Caitlin. My personal blog is awritersruminations and I have been using tumblr for more than a year now. I’ve always had a very positive view of this blogging community. That is, until I watched one of my dear friends, proustitute, be maligned, attacked, and harassed by several tumblr users. Proustitute has been one of the best things to ever happen to tumblr. They have elevated the site by posting high-quality content that is stimulating and even transformative. I would not be who I am today without their blog. I am one of countless followers who have been enriched by proustitute’s presence on tumblr, but their presence is now endangered because not enough is being done to protect them from the cruel and malicious attacks by other users. The kind of cyber abuse proustitute has been subjected to for months now should not be tolerated and more should be done to rectify this situation. I want to believe in tumblr again. I want to feel that you care about your users and that, if one of them feels unsafe, you will do everything within your power to protect them. I can no longer remain silent about this matter. I hope more can be done not only to end the abominable treatment that proustitute is currently enduring but to ensure that this does not happen to other tumblr users in the future.
“At the entrance, my bare feet on the dirt floor, Here, gusts of heat; at my back, white clouds. I stare and stare. It seems I was called for this: to glorify things just because they are.”—Czeslaw Milosz (via fuckyeahpolishpoets)
“Now is life very solid or very shifting? I am haunted by the two contradictions. This has gone on for ever; will last for ever; goes down to the bottom of the world—this moment I stand on.”—Virginia Woolf, from a diary entry dated 4 January 1929 (via proustitute)
My cup’s the same sand colour as bread. Rain’s the same colour of a building across the street, its torn red dahlias and ruined a book propped on the sill.
Rain articulates the skins of everything, pink of bricks from the fire they baked in, lizard green leaves, the wrinkled tongues of pine cones. It’s accurate the way we never are, bringing out what’s best without changing a thing. Rain that makes beds damp, our room a cave in the morning, a tent in late afternoon, ignites the sound of leaves we miss all winter. The sound that pulled us to bed… caught in the undertow of wind in wet leaves.
I’m writing in the sound we woke to, curtains breathing into a half-dark room.
I’m up early now, walking. Remember our walks, horizons like lips barely red at dawn, how kind the distance seemed? Letters should be written to send news, to say send me news, to say meet me at the train station. Not these dry tears, to honour us like a tomb. I’m ashamed of our separation. I wake in the middle of the night and see “shame” written in the air like a Bible story. I dreamed my skin was tattooed, covered with the words that put me here, covered in sores, in quarantine—and you know what? I was afraid to light the lamp and look.
Your husband’s a good builder—I burned every house we had, with a few words to start the flames. Words of wood, they had no power of their own. “The important” gave them meaning and humble with gratitude they exploded in my face.
Now we’re like planets, holding to each other from a great distance. When we lay down oceans flexed their green muscles, life got busy in the other hemisphere, the globe tilted, bowing to our power! Now we’re hundreds of miles apart, our short arms keep us lonely, no one hears what’s in my head. I look old. I’m losing my hair. Where does lost hair go in this world, lost eyesight, teeth? We grow old like rivers, get shrunk and doubled over until we can’t find the mouth of anything.
It’s March, even the birds don’t know what to do with themselves.
Sometimes I’m certain those who are happy know one thing more than us… or one thing less. The only book I’d write again is our bodies closing together. That’s the language that stuns, scars, breathes into you. Naked, we had voices!
I want you to promise we’ll see each other again, you’ll send a letter. Promise we’ll be lost together in our forest, pale birches of our legs.
I hear your voice now—I know, everyone knows promises come from fear. People don’t live past each other, you’re always here with me. Sometimes I pretend you’re in the other room until it rains… and then this is the letter I always write: The letter I write when they’re keeping me from home. I smell your supper steaming in the kitchen. There are paper bags on the table with their bottoms melted out by rain and the weight of oranges.
“God forbid that another should ever live the life I have known here and yet there are moments…when after a dark day there comes a sunset—such a glowing gorgeous marvelous sky that one forgets all in the beauty of it—these are the moments when I am really writing. Whatever happens I have had these blissful, perfect moments and they are worth living for.”—Katherine Mansfield (via katherine-mansfield)
“When I am dead, even then,
I will still love you, I will wait in these poems,
When I am dead, even then
I am still listening to you.
I will still be making poems for you
out of silence;
silence will be falling into that silence,
it is building music.”—Muriel Rukeyser, "Then"
“Nothing could be seen through the cloud. The 24 seconds were passing. Then one looked back again at the blue; and rapidly, very very quickly, all the colours faded; it became darker and darker as at the beginning of a violent storm; the light sank and sank; we kept saying this is the shadow; and we thought now it is over—this is the shadow; when suddenly the light went out. We had fallen. It was extinct. There was no colour. The earth was dead.”—Virginia Woolf, from a diary entry dated 30 June 1927 (via proustitute)
“The truth is that I need the stimulus of other people. Alone, over my dead fire, I tend to see the thin places in my own stories. The real novelist, the perfectly simple human being, could go on, indefinitely, imagining. He would not integrate, as I do. He would not have this devastating sense of grey ashes in a burnt-out grate. Some blind flaps in my eyes. Everything becomes impervious. I cease to invent.”—Virginia Woolf, The Waves, 1931 (via proustitute)
“I have nothing to give you, nothing to carry,
some words to make me less afraid, to say
you gave me this.
Memory insists with its sea voice,
muttering from its bone cave.
Memory wraps us
like the shell wraps the sea.
Nothing to carry,
some stones to fill our pockets,
to give weight to what we have.”—Anne Michaels, from “Memoriam”
From Concerning the Book That Is the Body of the Beloved by Gregory Orr
Resurrection of the body of the beloved, Which is the world Which is the poem Of the world, the poem of the body.
Mortal ourselves and filled with awe, we gather the scattered limbs Of Osiris. That he should live again. That death not be oblivion.
When I open the book I hear the poets whisper and weep, Laugh and lament.
In a thousand languages They say the same thing: “We lived. The secret of life is love, that casts its wing over all suffering, that takes in its arms the hurt child, that rises green from the fallen seed.”
Sadness is there, too. All the sadness in the world. Because the tide ebbs, Because wild waves Punish the shore And the small lives lived there. Because the body is scattered. Because death is real And sometimes death is not Even the worst of it.
If sadness did not run Like a river through the Book, Why would we go there? What would we drink?
Oh, there’s blood enough, and sap From the stalks. Tears, too. A raindrop and the dark water Of bogs. It’s a rich ink. Indelible, invisible (hold up the page to the light, hold the page near a flame).
The world comes into the poem. The poem comes into the world. Reciprocity – it all comes down To that. As with lovers: When it’s right you can’t say Who is kissing whom.
Lighten up, lighten up. Let go of the heaviness. Was it a poem from the Book That so weighed you down?
Impossible. Less than a feather. Less than the seed a milkweed Pod releases in the breeze.
Lifted, it drifts out to settle In a field, with all that’s inside it Waiting to become Root and tendril, to come alive.
Now the snow is falling Even more than an hour ago. The pine in the backyard Bows with the weight of it.
Two years ago, my father Died. What love we had Hidden under misery, Weighed down with years Of silence.
And now, Maybe the poem can free Us, maybe the poem can express The love and let the rest Slide to the earth as the snow Does now, freeing the tree Of its burden.
To be alive: not just the carcass But the spark. That’s crudely put, but …
If we’re not supposed to dance, Why all this music?
Time to shut up. Voltaire said the secret Of being boring Is to say everything.
And yet I held Back about love All those years: Talking about death Insistently, even As I was alive; Talking about loss As if all was loss, As if the world Did not return Each morning. As if the beloved Didn’t long for us.
No wonder I go on So. I go on so Because of the wonder.
“Yet all we see are houses, rows and rows
of houses as far as sight, and where sight vanishes
into nothing, into the new world no one has seen,
there has to be more than dust, wind-borne particles
of burning earth, the earth we lost, and nothing else.”—Philip Levine, “A Story” (via the-final-sentence)
“I shall see a light in the depths of the sea, and stealthily approach - for one’s sentences are only an approximation, a net one flings over some sea pearl which may vanish; and if one brings it up it won’t be anything like what it was when I saw it, under the sea.”—Virginia Woolf, in a letter to Ethel Smyth, September 1930 (via acandleandawick)
“… before I could read them for myself I had come to love just the words of them, the words alone. What the words stood for, symbolized, or meant was of very secondary importance—what mattered was the very sound of them as I heard them for the first time on the lips of the remote and quite incomprehensible grown-ups who seemed, for some reason, to be living in my world.”—Dylan Thomas on poetry (via lesmotsjustes)
“The last few days, what one notices more than anything is the blue. Blue sky, blue mountains—all is a heavenly blueness! And clouds of all kinds—wings, soft white clouds, almost hard little golden islands, great mock-mountains. The gold deepens on the slopes. In fact, in sober fact, it is perfection. But the late evening is the time of times. Then, with that unearthly beauty before one, it is not hard to realise how far one has to go. To write something that will be worthy of that rising moon, that pale light.”—Katherine Mansfield, from a journal entry dated 16 October 1921 (via proustitute)
“The pale, cold light of the winter sunset did not beautify—it was like the light of truth itself. When the smoky clouds hung low in the west and the red sun went down behind them, leaving a pink flush on the snowy roofs and the blue drifts, then the wind sprang up afresh, with a kind of bitter song, as if it said: “This is reality, whether you like it or not. All those frivolities of summer, the light and shadow, the living mask of green that trembled over everything, they were lies, and this is what was underneath. This is the truth.” It was as if we were being punished for loving the loveliness of summer.”—Willa Cather, My Antonia
All night love draws its heavy drape of scent against the sea and we wake with the allure of earth in our lungs, hungry for bread and oranges. […] We are sailors who wake when the moon intrudes the smoky tavern of dreams, wake to find a name on an arm or our bodies bruised by sun or the pressure of a hand, wake with the map of night on our skin, traced like moss-stained stone.
—from The Passionate World by Anne Michaels (via her-rabbits)
“You still don’t understand? Throw the emptiness in
your arms out into that space we breathe; maybe birds
will feel the air thinning as they fly deeper into themselves.”—Rainer Maria Rilke, from “The First Elegy” in Duino Elegies, translated by A. Poulin, Jr. (via fuckyeahrainermariarilke)