As always, I'm going to start off with the literature, then move to the artwork.
So, on the literature list, I'm going to open with this wonderful poem by Nocturnaliss. Time is one of my favourite topics for poetry and prose, and it's always a treat to see how different authors approach it. This poem is, perhaps, one of my favourite representations of time:
#30 - 'Dance of Time'Time began when we were young
We knew no better, knew no lie
Nor that mankind usurped the throne
of She who grants us daily life
She has been there, beneath our feet
the food we take, the air we breathe
since long before mankind was born
She will remain, when we're long gone
The beasts we kill, polluted seas
will be to Her our legacy
And time will end past mankind's reign
When ashes rain and oceans bleed
She will be all that shall remain
The shadow of an ancient greed
Thank you, Nocturnaliss!
Before moving on to the next feature, I want to add that Nocturnaliss has a wide range of artistic projects, including high-fantasy prose, poetry, and art, and I would highly recommend perusing her website and social media platforms. Her work is a real treat for fantasy-fiction lovers and people who enjoy thought-provoking, meaningful poetry:
Next in line is the first chapter of A Cursed Town , which is a Secrets of Marfath story by author Zara-Arletis . Marfath is a fascinating town, with fantasy, scares and interesting characters, making this tale well worth reading:
A Cursed Town Ch. 1A Secrets of Marfath Story
"While I am reluctant to send you to this cursed town, there are few other options. No matter what may come, keep faith burning in your heart. Like a fire, it will keep the beasts at bay."
The carriage shook with every stone and dip in the road, making the words on the page jump. Josef barely noticed, his attention riveted on the last lines of the letter as he read them once more. What had the old priest meant? Surely the town wasn't cursed. It was just remote; a small town full of uneducated, small minded people. Father Josef had been to many places like that.
Villages on the dark continent where haggard women danced naked in the moonlight, trying to work their will against neighbors. Hamlets in icy mountain ranges where people hung garlic above their door to ward off the dead. City districts where the forgotten poor made idols of their most wicked denizens and worshipped them in foul rites beneath city s
Thank you, Zara-Arletis!
My next pick is by queenofeagles . It captures a strong narrative in an imaginative, post-apocalyptic fantasy world within a very short span of words:
Bite me “Bite me,” his sister whispered. “Come here and bite me…”
The boy put his finger to his lips. “Hush! You’ll scare it off! Besides, it’s my turn to get bitten.”
We’ll see about that, the glimmer in her eyes said. His mouth curled into a smile: challenge accepted.
The two children crept forward. Their suntanned arms were stretched out to a tiny dot on the wall, like compass needles pointing north. Their ‘north pole’ however had legs and wings, so flimsy they almost disappeared against the backdrop of flowery, yellowed wallpaper. It was a miracle he had spotted the creature. He didn’t dare to look away, afraid he wouldn’t find it again. He didn’t even blink.
Sunlight beamed through the walls as if they weren’t there, turning the room into an oven. Sweat beaded on
Next up is a poem by Alessiah. It is an ode to a beautiful Welsh word:
hiraethdays (aeons felt-like) ago
i wrote about the leave-taking
on the back side of a snapshot of a girl
mantled in a dress that had drawn garden on its fabric
on a xanthous, pristine paper;
then, i wrote inter every two lines of a diary's sheet:
fear's not always seen through
a lens of monochrome
-for a seed of reason
in a soil of artistic insanity of mind
has always known that you cannot say goodbye
to someone whose hello
you have never tasted on a tongue
from their own.
(we've been severed long before
the letter-written-with-the-vaguest-handwriting on a xanthous paper
Thank you, Alessiah!
My next pick is this powerful free-verse piece by JimmieBee :
PrisonerBring the prisoner in
the one who thinks up stories
and inks them in her skin
Let her untangle your braids
and listen to her sing
proudly belted ballads
before the walls grow thin
Now they're whispered lullabies
now they're bleak and grim
now the inked prisoner
is heartbroken within.
Now, onto this interesting look at love, written by OtterFossil :
A Bittersweet View of LoveA Bittersweet View of Love
The clink whenever my
Spoon hits glass
Reminds me that the coffee
Is not something I can lean on.
Even the sugar
Burgs haven’t melted yet,
So I doubt the drink is warm.
Some days are colder than others,
But that’s about as simple
As my life gets nowadays.
The wind is chilly, isn’t it?
Of course I know that.
But you’re just making talk.
It’s funny, I didn’t used to be
Cynical. There was a time when
I’d have laughed and said,
Yea, it is, isn’t it?
But today I think it’s about right.
The weatherman may be wrong,
But Mother isn’t.
Whenever the sun begins
To paint the sky a razberry
Orange, I remember the night
When love felt real.
We walked back to our campsite
In a line. For you, the darkness became
An excuse to twist your fingers
Between mine. For me, it preluded
The scene when I finally felt
Like there was a bridge between us.
The next act was me stumbling as
You twisted the ropes and I grappled
I think everyone may have a different view on this poem. On one level, I relate to what the speaker is saying, and on another, not so much. However you feel about it, I think it has a lot of merit. Thank you, OtterFossil!
Next is a brutal approximation of certain aspects of electronic and social media, brought to you in haiku form by ArwynRie :
mediaslather my ribcage
with the blood of innocents
jackals gorge on hearts
Thank you, ArwynRie!
Now, I know the next one is an appendix to a longer work, but I think it stands up on its own as a short, with imaginative writing and amusing content. Thanks to the author, Iroken !
Now, with this next one, I imagine that at least one person is rolling their eyes and saying, ‘Oh, dailydragonlair, you overly-cautious lair of the daily dragon, this is a boring article telling me to do something I already know I should do!’* And yes, I know that many people, in this digital age, know to back up their files regularly etc. However, I still value that somebody took the time to write an article, not only as a source of information, but as a friendly reminder, to me and others, to always take care when working with computers and the internet. Thank you, TheArtFrog !
PLEASE READ - The Ransomware EpidemicPlease share, fave and spread this journal. You could help many people on DeviantArt protect their computers from this horrific cyberattack and raise awareness about the issue to those who haven't yet heard of it.
Funny how all these years of me picking and choosing updates to keep my computer functioning how I want it (you know... to have what you paid for and keep my product without others stealing it and modifying it *cough*badupdates*cough* ... basic consumer rights... but anyway) came to haunt me.
So I finally decided that I'd bite the bullet and update my updates... only to find out Windows Update was refusing to update and would forever stay stuck "searching for updates". Just my luck. When I really don't want updates they try to install, and when I really need them they don't.
Anyhow, why am I so desper
*This is a hypothetical conversation only, and does not represent the thoughts or words of any reader or their affiliates.
And now, on the border between the art and the literature features, I have included a comic. It's one of my favourites by the fantastic travisJhanson :
Ok, now I'm moving on to artwork, and what better way to start than with a smile?
This cuddly piece is by artist and author SuperferretIX . Please note that this was originally a t-shirt design, and is available on shirts and sweaters via SuperferretIX's Redbubble shop:
Next is a fantastic dragon by Eternity9 . I would like everyone to take a moment to appreciate the scales. I can't imagine how long it took to craft each and every little scale, alongside the veins in the wings, and, well, the entirety of the dragon, really.
Thank you, Eternity9!
Next on the list is an illustration which, like SuperferritIX's cat, makes me smile every time. This one is courtesy of poisondragon88 :
This one is particularly appropriate for the half of the world currently experiencing winter.
The next piece I want to feature is this dramatic painting by grazapp, which simultaneously portrays an idea and a musical composition as visual art:
Thank you, grazapp!
Next on the list is this fantastic piece by Wildweasel339 :
I love everything about this, from the style, to the tiny mouse knight, to the expressions on everyone's faces. It's impossible to look at the love in that bears eyes, and not want one of your own!
Now, onto some photography. I adore this triptych by AnnaBelial . Isn't it absolutely grin-worthy?
Thank you, AnnaBelial!
In this next photo, the blue and the tiny details of this cats eyes simply blow me away. It's so interesting to have a fantastic, high-definition shot of the eyes. Thank you to Sapphiresenthiss !
Now, this next one is especially adorable for those who might be fans of The Witcher books and games. There’s a whole set of Witcher characters done as toddlers, by artist NikiVaszi . They are adorable in their own right, but they are filled with in-jokes for those who know about the characters and stories. This one, depicting character Yennifer, is particularly amusing and sweet:
Finally, I have decided to include this portrait by Olieart, which portrays Mabel and her pet pig, Waddles, from the animated show Gravity Falls. It is a fantastic show for viewers of all ages, and I was immediately taken by the optimistic, bubbly character that is Mabel. Once Waddles arrived, he was more or less inseparable from her as a part of her character, and this picture not only sums up their relationship, but fantastically re-imagines the bold, cartoony style of the show as realistic portraiture:
And there you have my mid-year features. I hope you all enjoyed them! Remember, if there was an entry you particularly liked, you should probably check out that artist/author's gallery. That way, you'll probably find even more stuff you love
Thank you for reading, lovely people!