Saturday, August 13, 2011


For my birthday, Amanda Johnston and Allison Sigrist sent me a chunk o'cash, mutiples of my age. These woman already give me $ each month right before rent is due. I was going to use it to pay my phone bill, but then I stopped to think about what these women mean to me, individually and as a couple. Among countless other important realities about who they are and what they do, it was Amanda who introduced me to the internet back in 1995 and trained me to have an online presence. Her marriage to Allison helped spark the writing of Ginny Bates. And their visit last November launched not only the research of Allison's family (i.e., Lavinia) but also Stoundmeal.

So I decided to spend the gift on something other than grim necessity. I could hear each of them in my head saying "Yes!" Consequently, I now have a combo scanner/printer/copier that networks with my new laptop, including the ability to scan from slides and negatives.

During the 1980s, at the height of my genealogical travels, everywhere I went I asked folks I visited if I could copy their family photos. I had a camera with a special lens and stand that made this easy. Most of these photographs were in danger of being lost and did not exist elsewhere, certainly not in negative form. I also photographed places and gravestones, keeping detailed notes. I have hundreds of these negatives safely stored in labeled sleeves.

I was also inspired by JEB, Lynda Koolish, Cathy Cade, Tee Corinne, and many others during the 1970s to document my own life and community. I have dozens of albums stuffed with photographs of the wimmin and events I knew. Few of them have ever been scanned.

So, my goal for the next couple of months is to render all these images to a digital format that can be easily shared and reliably preserved. It's a monumental project, something I think of as part of the heritage I want to leave behind. I will post later on the question of privacy and distribution, asking for your feedback.

This weekend I have embarked on the oldest images, family going back to the first advent of photography. As I scan, I am definitively identifying each photo, running it through editing, and posting it at my online genealogical tree -- instant sharing. I will share a few of these in future posts with stories attached as I write them.

And it frees me up for the brave new world I have embarked on with Margot.

For now, the photo above shows me at age 9 (on the left) with my cousin Sally and little brother Bill in Dilley, Texas, December 1964. This is in our dining room, which was also my only space in the house. I was being abused by Craig though not quite sexually yet. I had just written my first poem and found out I was a lesbian. Sally is my cousin, Mama's sister's (Aunt Sarah) younger daughter, 4 months apart from me in age. The stuffed lion was called Leo. We are sitting on my bed.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011



When we skype, my girlfriend holds
her laptop in her eager hands
the better to imagine she can cup my face
or lace her fingers through mine
She has a dimple in one wrist, and
gestures often, leans toward the screen
when we laugh, which is a lot
She rolls her own and smokes 'em strong
Puts balm on her lips after, flashing
a clunky deco watch. She'll lift her
gorgeous calves to show me the latest
non-les-fem shoes she had to have
while ranting about racism or telling
tales of her punk days at the uni
We are so hot for each other, the line
sometimes melts and turns us into blurs
She scowls at mention of my latest ex
My mother will never meet her
She hectors me to write, to sleep, to
cherish my friends, to fight the fuckwits
and emotionally retarded out there
After we click off, I lie back in the dark
and think of England.

© Maggie Jochild, written 10 August 2011, 7:05 p.m.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011


Here's the weekly best of what I've gleaned from I Can Has Cheezburger efforts.
There are some really creative folks out there.