Friday, November 13, 2009

blink my eyes and look around

today, again, i feel like praying.

i feel it in my feet that want to run from this place, and in my hands that freeze together pointed like a cathedral. i feel it in my head the most, my frontal lobe beating hard with impulse: get out of here while you still can. go, run, make tracks.

today my body wants to pray even if my mind says no and my lips are formless.

embarrassingly, i wish for comfort, to stave off the prayer: a cheap chocolate brownie at the coffeehouse down the street that pulses terrible techno, even at 8, 9, 10, 11 in the morning. all day it's a disco.

i rush for the cheap brownie and eat it in big bites even though my friend sent me a vegan white chocolate bar that rides in my shoulder bag, the color of angel wings. i have it with me, but it seems too good somehow for how bad i feel. i need something as shitty as i feel inside. the brownie fills the void, but it makes me ill.

today i want to pray because my job is hard.

it goes through these phases of being too hard for a living breathing person to stand, and then of being just so wondrous that i catch my breath and thank whatever gods exist that i get to do it at all. and then there are a few days that are just days. they go by. i live. that's it.

today i am trying my hardest to be a machine. to type, to read, to turn the page. to type, to read, to turn the page, to close. to dial, to call, to state my purpose. to know my purpose. whatever that might be. but today my job makes me run from my office and devour cheap chocolate against my better judgement, after eating a completely vegan lunch.

and now i want to pray. it's sunny out finally, for an hour, and the sun shines on everything, on the kids somewhere that i fear i can't do anything for, can't save, on the trapped cows that make the milk for this awful chocolate, on the church steeples of my childhood stinging the sky like dying honeybees.

we give of ourselves, the churches say, you can too.
i give of myself, here, i say.

i pray, right here in the coffeehouse-disco.

let my ears be enough today
let my voice be enough today
let my feet know where to take us all

i hope that the slight ripping i feel is awakening and not fear.
i hope that somewhere a cow is lazing underneath this late fall sunlight, free and easy.
i hope all those kids for the moment are safe.
and i say amen.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Vegan At Heart

Hi all -
Just a quick plug for a really awesome website that I heard about from the fabulous Jasmin Singer of Farm Sanctuary. I signed up for this right away:

Vegan at Heart is a free e-mail coaching program for people who are vegan at heart but not necessarily in practice. It’s for idealists and animal-lovers and treehuggers and health nuts and everybody in-between who wants to incorporate more compassionate, healthy, sustainable habits into their daily lives but who need a little more info, a little moral support, or just a little friendly kick in the pants.

AWESOME, right?? Who doesn't need a little extra help sometimes? I know that I do, although lately I think I've been doing much better. Since my last hideous falling off the wagon cheese binge, which involved a plate of macaroni and cheese big enough for 3 people, a quesadilla, stomach pains that made me cry, and a little silent prayer of apologies to the cows, I think I am back on track.

So check out Vegan at Heart with me and let's do something for the world and for animals.
Love, Starling

Thursday, October 15, 2009

hail, hail zoop.

zoop is gone.

i am six months a veg*n today, thanks to john darnielle, this beautiful goat in the photo, and farm sanctuary.

i didn't know she was gone until someone posted it on the mountain goats forums. she is greatly missed.

i was just telling one of the kids i work with about her, a sad and damaged, silenced child who is caught in a custody battle and probably identifies greatly with caged and hurt animals, and i told her a story about zoop the three legged goat with a prosthetic who can pose and prance and make people love her.

my kiddo was wide eyed. her eyes sparkled for the first time since i've started meeting with her and she half whispered, "i'd sure like to see a goat like that someday."

i told her i'd bring in pictures for her sometime, of zoop.
she said, "really? you really have them? i sure want to see a goat like that."

hail, zoop, you brought light to the eyes of even children you never met.

so much love.
rest in peace, beautiful spirit.

Monday, September 7, 2009

plum jam

plum jam:

a pound and a half of plums (this is not for a very large amount, just a small tupperware for you and yours)

1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon cardomom
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon of cornstarch

- cut plums into small pieces

- stir molasses and all other ingredients together into a bowl until they are smooth and well-combined

- pour molasses mixture over plums and marinate overnight

- dissolve cornstarch in cold water

- start simmering the plums at medium heat and pour the dissolved cornstarch in, and stir, stir, stir. this i charge you: you must keep stirring.

- i cooked this for hours, probably 2-3. but you just want to watch the consistency and wait for it to become JAM! i used a spoon to take it out and test, cool it down and make sure it seems like the sort of jam you like to eat!

- eat that jam!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

the first of my plum dishes - Stone Fox Compote

stone fox compote (for yourself and your attractive loved ones)

about 2 cups of plums (i made a very small pan of this, just enough for two people and a bit left over)
a peach
1/4 cup raw sugar
4 tablespoons earth balance
dash of vanilla
teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon coriander
3/4 cup plain rolled oats

- preheat oven to 325. use a little baking pan for this, you can even use a loaf pan or a cake pan, it doesn't even matter. flexible baking is the way to go.

- cut up yer fruit in small pieces and mix them together. dump them in your pan.

- melt the earth balance and the raw sugar together, stirring so that it forms a syrup. add yer spices and stir, stir, stir.

- pour the syrup over the rolled oats and mix it together with a fork until it's all sticky and pat it down over the cut up fruit.

- bake for about a half an hour so that it gets nice and hot and stewy and delicious. we served this over vegan pancakes with a side of hashbrowns made very hot with sriracha and red onion for a contrast to the sweetness.


Originally uploaded by The Starling Tattoo
coming up this weekend:
some sort of delicious plum dessert, made with these little babies.

Monday, August 31, 2009

on belmont street

sorry for the hiatus, folks.
soon to return with thoughts, a recipe perhaps, and some love.
- starling