Storm Arcana

Intuitive Visionary Coach & Founder of Arcana Academy

Tag: Marriage

What I’m Reading Right Now: sexyouality

Comes the Dawn

After a while you learn the subtle difference
between holding a hand and obtaining a soul
and you learn love doesn’t mean leaning
and company doesn mean security

and you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts
and presents aren’t promises
and you begin to accept your defeats
with your head up and your eyes open
with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child
and you learn to build all your roads on today
because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans
and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight.

After a while,
you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much

so you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul
instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure
and that you really ARE strong
and you really do have worth

and you learn and learn.

With every goodbye, you learn.

 

Seems like ever since I attended Goteblud‘s opening, I’ve been a bit obsessed by ‘zines.  And thanks to all of  the political rulings over Gay Marriage, I’ve been reviewing my feelings about marriage and relationships in general.  

Recently my friend Suki Divine lent me her copy of sexyouality:  challenging the culture of monogamy.  That’s where the above poem came from.  No author is attributed to the piece, but the issue is printed in England (1999) by GodhavenInk publications.  There’s many essays on sex and relationships, focusing on monogamy and polyamory (as the title references).  The essays rely heavily on quotations to back up their theses about sex and culture.  I think three quotes in particular are worth sharing.  

The first is by Terence McKenna:

“I think the most dangerous parts of the current cultural trance are pretty obvious:  male domination, materialism, and the absence of spirit.  Monogamy is another one in there.  These are cultural styles which, if not overcome, will probably contribute to our ever more rapid acceleration toward, if not extinction, at least a profound brutalisation of life.”

Another by Henry Rollins:

“It’s hilarious to me when someone says that someone belongs to them, like ‘That’s my girl.’  What a crock.  No one belongs to anybody.  Fuck slavery.  Do what you want…Such mental torment over petty, trivial, emotional displays such as jealousy;  it’s a form of laziness.  You all should loosen up.”

And my favorite by Deborah Anapol:

“Intimate relationships at their best are a path to higher consciousness and greater self knowledge, largely because of the valuable feedback – or mirroring effect – one receives from a beloved.  Having more than one partner at a time not only increases the available quantity of feedback, it also makes it harder to blame your partner for the problems you might be creating in the relationship.  In other words, multiple partners can actually help you become a more responsible person.”

I don’t know how I personally feel about the whole monogamy versus polyamory debate.  I know that this ‘zine opened my mind to new ways of thinking about relationships, but I don’t know if they would be right for me.  I suppose I too have been indoctrinated in the classic Snow White “One Day My Prince Will Come” kind of  mindset.  Seems to me that it’s a lot of work to date one person, let alone a village.  I do think jealousy and ownership are messed up ways to relate to your beloved, and maybe it is unreasonable to ask one person to be your everything, and yes, our society has really backwards ways of thinking about sex and sexuality.  However, I don’t think polyamory is necessarily a prescription for everyone’s needs.  It’s probably best to take the whole monogamy versus polyamory and apply it on a case by case individual basis.  

I’ve never liked the ownership aspects of marriage, but I also think making a lifelong commitment to one’s partner is  pretty amazing.  The whole thing gets more complicated when you start to analyze the rights one gets when the government legitimizes your relationship.  I might not like the idea of marriage, but it starts to look pretty good when you start considering legal rights.  Anyway, I’m just touching on these ideas in a cursory fashion.  I’m not up to the task of really analyzing them any more than that right now.

The last page of sexyouality reprints a poem by Kahlil Gibran which I think is a pretty succinct way of looking at the whole coupling thing:

Marriage

You were born together, and together you shall be for evermore.

You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.

Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of time.

But let there be spaces in your togetherness.

And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:

Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your being.

Fill each others cup but drink not from one cup.

Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.

Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each of you be alone.

Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.

For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.

And stand together yet not too near together:

For the pillars of the temple stand apart, 

And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

 

You can order a copy of sexyouality here.

Storm Sunday: Scott Eaton


bp15_5croptThis Sunday we take a look at some nicely rendered Black Panther pages featuring Storm during the “Bride of the Panther” storyline. Now, regardless of what you think about T’Challa and Ororo’s marriage, you have got to give Eaton credit for presenting the story (written by Reginald Hudlin) in crisp, dynamic lines. Eaton gives the pages a storytelling fluidity with strong characterization. Anatomy, costumes and background are spot on.  Frankly, I think I would’ve enjoyed his run on the title without the words infinitely more.  

Scot Eaton draws a gorgeous Storm!  There’s nothing to criticize here.  He makes the shape of her face look like an African American woman, he’s got a handle on her tiara and costume (check out the jump ring for her trademark lightning bolt earrings) and he gives her a variety of expressions.  It’s just too bad that the script called for her to act aloof and a tad dismissive.  

I tried to find a website for Scott Eaton but came up with nothing, so if you know I could properly link to Scott’s current work please let me know.  The images from today’s post are from Black Panther #15.

blap015007_col Here the Arabian Knight interrupts Black Panther’s marriage proposal with some random sword action. What could have been an emotionally moving moment is reduced to a cheesy super-villain attack. Storm also comes across as snooty, like she’s making T’Challa beg which seems way out of character for such a compassionate heroine. Having the Arabian Knight attack out of the blue reduces him to a simpleton, a cliche in a time when our culture (especially pop culture) needs better representation when depicting characters from the Middle East.  Who in their right mind would just attack the Black Panther out in the open with no other tactical advantage other than a flying carpet?  Let’s just pretend he’s mind-controlled, okay?  And, yes, I’m surprised I’m defending the Arabian Knight too.  
blap015008_col
 Storm leaves the attack to her suitor (At least the hand to hand part is prolonged to show the reader T’Challa’s skills, but the fight feels forced overall. It simply doesn’t make any sense. It’s random at best).
blap015009_colStorm has her nose stuck in the air while the Arabian and African are still fighting it out.
blap015010_col
Black Panther leaves a little bit of fight left in the Arabian Knight and Storm blasts it out of him.  Then they get back to their “will they or won’t they” moment.  They would, they did and fandom is still arguing about it.  
bp15_42
Black Panther proposes to Storm and she makes him beg.  This is not the Ororo I am accustomed to.  Sorry, Hudlin, it doesn’t wash.  
bp15_5Oh, the witty banter!  T’Challa is sooooo superior!  He’s soooo smart.  Duh.  We know that.  At least it doesn’t seem to bother Storm in the least.  She’s too busy to worry about his correction to give him an answer to his proposition!  That’s cold.  Here’s the thing.  I love Storm and Black Panther together.  I have always liked the idea of them as a couple.  However, I am not a fan of how quickly Marvel rushed them into marriage.  I would’ve liked Storm as a guest star in his book and T’Challa as a guest in X-Men, courting each other and discussing their relationship.  Better yet, I needed scenes (besides a mini-series of a brief moment in their childhood) of them being in love with one another.  I wanted to understand why they decided to commit to this partnership when they’d pushed away before.  I needed to see a properly drawn wedding with the X-Men playing a larger role.  I needed to see a Wakanda/Mutant cultural exchange.  I’m still hoping for such a thing.  The first issue of the mini-series (out now) X-Men:  Worlds Apart seems to be addressing some of these issues, even if Marvel didn’t have the stones to put Storm’s name on the cover as it was solicited.  What do you think of Storm and Black Panther’s wedding?

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