I came across an old meme while poking through and cleaning up this blog’s past and, considering that this year is one for the record books (as the news media keeps telling me), I thought it might be interesting to revive it. (I’ll leave it to you to decide whether that thought was justified.)

I used to blog almost every day, but those days are long gone. Most of the first lines of the month for this year were random quotes of the day, but that seemed like cheating: other people’s lines, not mine. So I kept going through the month until I found something I myself had actually written. (Sometimes that was weeks into the month.) So here, on this penultimate day of the year is my harvest.


Well, this Musings post is grossly long, and maybe a bit dated, but I started throwing things into the file, then got caught up in the holidays—and God forbid anyone should be deprived of my Musings.

First quote of the month:
“Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend—or a meaningful day.”

—Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama, Time, April 11, 1988


This is a brief book but absolutely chock full of useful information on warding and cleansing, all of it presented in a practical and straightforward manner.

Review: By Rust of Nail & Prick of Thorn by Althaea Sebastiani

First quote of the month:
“Every book is the wreck of a perfect idea.”

—Iris Murdoch, The Black Prince


Her sister said he was no damned good, but she was crazy in love with him.

First quote of the month:
“I love sleep because it is both pleasant and safe to use. Pleasant because one is in the best possible company and safe because sleep is the consummate protection against the unseemliness that is the invariable consequence of being awake. What you don’t know won’t hurt you. Sleep is death without responsibility.”

—Fran Lebowitz, Metropolitan Life


She was the youngest of nine siblings, a small town country girl.

First quote of the month:
“I speak the truth, not my fill of it, but as much as I dare speak; and I dare to do so a little more as I grow old.”

—Michel de Montaigne, Essais, Book III


She liked to tell people she could ride before she could walk, then whip out this old picture to prove it—though this horse belonged to friends of her parents and had been sold before she was old enough to remember it.

First quote of the month:
“If you do not raise your eyes you will think that you are the highest point.”

—Antonio Porchia, Voices (tr. W. S. Merwin)


There were no entries in June that were not quotes of the day. George Floyd was killed May 25 and I didn’t give a fuck about much.

First quote of the month:
“Confronted with the impossibility of remaining faithful to one’s beliefs, and the equal impossibility of becoming free of them, one can be driven to the most inhuman excesses.”

—James Baldwin, “Stranger in the Village,” Harper’s, October 1953


We’ve all probably had a number of things in our lives that made us go “huh.”

First quote of the month:
“I think that it’s much more important to do than to say. And you learn that a lot from your kids, who are watching you, you know? Living by example—that’s always a better teacher than trying to preach. You should do what you’re supposed to do and hope that that ripples out. And speak up when you’re supposed to, as opposed to trying to write prescriptions for the way people should live.”

—Don Cheadle, interviewed by Maranda Pleasant for Origin Magazine, May 1, 2014


I got a weird “spam” call the other day.

First quote of the month:
“I really want to keep my mind open to all possibilities. If I make up my mind in advance what I believe about something … I stop listening. We all stop listening once you’ve made up your mind … I want to be curious. I want to maintain my curiosity about what the answers to the question might be. And I want to hold out for the possibility that someone will surprise me.”

—Gwen Ifill, interview, Television Academy Foundation, Oct. 20, 2011


I’m not sure this is a genuine case of high strangeness. It’s easy to dismiss—and, in fact, I dismissed it almost as soon as it happened. But it is strange.

First quote of the month:
“Make up a story…For our sake and yours forget your name in the street; tell us what the world has been to you in the dark places and in the light. Don’t tell us what to believe, what to fear. Show us belief’s wide skirt and the stitch that unravels fear’s caul.”

―Toni Morrison, The Nobel Lecture In Literature, 1993


Instagram Stories – Bo Peep
I realized that I never finished posting my Instagram Stories here.

First quote of the month:
“I was fine being in the closet at the beginning of my career because that’s what you were supposed to be—until I realized that it didn’t serve anybody, and I was left feeling utterly empty. This is who I am, so I’ve gotta be me.”

—Billy Porter, Advocate.com, April 15, 2014


Distracted by inconsequence I rarely realized
I had a faithful partner dancing by my side…

First quote of the month:
“Embrace diversity.
Or be divided,
By those who see you as prey.
Embrace diversity
Or be destroyed.”

—Octavia Butler, Parable of the Sower


I found a stash of really old postcards.

First quote of the month:
“Home is what you take with you, not what you leave behind.”

—N. K. Jemison, The Fifth Season