On the Tip of my Tongue

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So, the mad compulsion to blog has lifted; I’m not feeling any desire to post everyday. Other obsessions linger, one being this matter of divesting myself of the American accent.

Some may criticise me in this endeavour. Those are people who identify me as American. But, that is not my identity.

True identity is a spiritual thing having nothing to do with where a person is born or grew up; the soul has no nationality. Therefore, I feel no loyalty to my native accent and I wish, as someone who makes much of tune and tone, to replace it with what I know to be more aesthetic to the ear.

Thus, I’m training my tongue with proper elocution exercises. And, I’m finding it a strenuous workout indeed.

When I told my husband about how these exercises strengthen the tongue, he remarked that, perhaps, he ought to try them, too. He said it with a sly grin – the perv (and, I love him for it) – and I mentioned something about the “cunning linguist” and we both dissolved into laughter.

Ouch. My tongue hurts. This certainly isn’t for the faint of heart…or mouth, as the case may be. But, my determination persists. I must make my tongue know what my ear understands, and I must make my ear all the more sensitive.

To do this, I am talking to myself… I mean more so than usual. Practising. My social anxiety presents a serious obstacle to my endeavour…it all tends to fall apart when I go out my door and I am immediately put under pressure. My speech just starts to sound better…and, then, damn it, I have to talk to someone! Irony, anyone?

I suppose, the thing is, I hate labels and boxes and typecasting. Someone hears an American accent here, and suddenly there’s the box, the confinement. I’d like them to see me before there is a judgment made that doesn’t apply to me but will be attributed to me nonetheless simply because humans are too stupid to look past something so superficial.

Elocution used to be taught in schools. There used to be a standard. Now, well…I suppose one might say that standard is just another box. But, I won’t play devil’s advocate here on my own blog. Here, this one place where I have my say. But, at the very least, I don’t think a desire to improve one’s speech (whatever the reason) could be considered, in any way, a negative thing.

The aim is merely to improve. Perfection is not in my reach. As I say, practice may NEVER make perfect, but it CAN make BETTER.

Better. I’m not getting any. I mean with the health issues. But, this – the accent thing – is something for me to focus on. I know, I know. Right now, it isn’t a focus, it’s an obsession, a compulsion…a madness. I’m mad.

Yes, I’m mad. I’m not even allowed to be eccentric. Because, you have to have money in order to be eccentric. I know what I am: ill. But, surely a sick person with a lovely accent is better than just a sick person.

So, until this present obsession lifts (i.e. I get too frustrated with myself for continual failure), or I get my lyre harp (the other great obsessive craving of right now), I will work on this project of ridding myself of the American accent for which I have developed such a personal distaste… and, it would seem, my tongue’s going to ache. And, hopefully, at some point, others in the outside world will be able to hear all the hard work. I can, you know, only hope.

Body and Soul

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Last year I embarked on a journey of – what I, a big Doctor Who fan, called – regeneration. Not actually being a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey (more’s the pity), it is an ongoing process rather than a blast of light and an instant transformation.

What began as a declaration of freedom from a group of confining and judgmental people, has evolved into a continuing discovery and expression of the real me, and what suits the real me.

I think that many of us who go the way of body art and modification aren’t merely rebels. Certainly there are individuals who fall into that category. But, for me, the outer transformation is a reflection of the inner person. This is me taking off the masks.

I’ve discovered blue hair suits me. The most natural thing in the world. If my soul had hair, it would be blue.

I’m a wild thing which has been royally fucked up by being born on this planet and forced to live here. I don’t cope or function well here. But, here I am, for now. And, as long as I am, I choose not to hide, but rather to express, this tattooed, pierced, blue-haired soul.

Designed For Pleasure

Not wanting to leave it too long afer posting this post, and being accused of being a tease, I composed most of this subsequent post a day after my introductory post.  However, since then, I’ve revised it again and again in my mind.  Sex isn’t all there is to life, but it’s a big subject, and there’s so much I could say, so much I have already said, so much to consider.

First off, because sex and sexuality can be a means of miring one in complete body consciousness, this needs to be said: I am NOT a BODY.  You are NOT a BODY. The body is the vehicle of the soul, (or consciousness; whatever you are comfortable with calling the REAL you residing within the mortal “house”).  Having only body consciousness brings nothing but sorrow and, because of that, some believe that sexuality and spirituality don’t mix.  I’m not convinced on this point (if I was, I wouldn’t be writing this post); I think you CAN both be spiritual (soul-conscious) AND explore (the fullness of your) sexuality.  It’s a delicate (and worthwhile) balance. No, I am NOT a body, but I HAVE a body, and it was designed for pleasure.

Now that I have included this little (but important) preface, I think I’m ready to bring you the post I’ve been sitting on for these past few days:

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The human body is complex, but one thing is certain, it was designed for pleasure. We are taught from an early age to feel shame and guilt about this, to feel wrong and dirty.

**WARNING!! THERE WILL BE EXPLICIT LANGUAGE IN THIS POST. IF THAT’S NOT FOR YOU (OR, YOU ARE UNDER 18 YEARS OF AGE), MOVE ON.**

My fascination with sexual pleasure began at an embarrassingly early age, but just that embarrassment is a symptom of that shame we are taught to feel.

I don’t know about you, but I didn’t design my body. Had I done so, I would’ve definitely made some adjustments. However, my sexual organs…they’re pretty awesome. And, their design shows a purpose that goes  beyond, and is separate from,  mere procreation.

For someone who loves sex as much as I do, it’s easy to get passionate not only about the act, but the subject. As I have gotten older, I appreciate balance more and more, and having a firm grip on soul-consciousness (I’m not just a body, but I have a spiritual identity). There have been times in my life when sex was my life; everything revolved around sex (there’s a fine line between passion and obsession), and not only was the act something I constantly craved, but when I wasn’t engrossed in doing it, I was often found on my soapbox about it.

I don’t want to do that now, the soapbox thing where I bash women who constantly withhold sex from their husbands (leaving their partner’s needs woefully unfulfilled). Neither am I here to bemoan society’s unreal and unreasonable expectations in the appearance department. If you buy into media, and are a shallow person, so be it. If you are a woman who doesn’t (for whatever reason) want to explore deep sexual satisfaction with your husband (or, for that matter, you are a man withholding sex from his wife), have fun doing whatever you do and I hope your relationship won’t suffer too greatly. I’m not going to judge; I have my opinion, and years of experience, which would lead me to believe it’s a dangerous game you play, but I play my own dangerous games and you have no right to judge me either.

What I do want to talk about is freedom. Freedom to explore, if you want to. I’m talking about coming out if you’re bi or bi-curious. I’m talking about allowing yourself (without shame) to pleasure yourself. I want to encourage you to do some research on whatever you’re curious about. I’m talking about being free with yourself and your partner, trying new things, and having honesty with yourself and each other, allowing yourself – if you’ve always wanted to – a bit of kink, or spice, or whatever you want to call it. If you aren’t vanilla, stop putting yourself on the vanilla shelf and mislabelling yourself. And, ditch the shame.

On the same score, I feel I should add this important note:  if you are asexual, please be upfront about this. This, too, is nothing to be ashamed of. The problem with this sexual (or non-sexual, as the case may be) preference is when asexual people insist on embarking on a committed romantic relationship with someone who has a sex drive and falsely believes the partner with the sex drive will just be ok without sex. It’s NOT going to happen!  I believe there are relationships for everyone…  but, for them to work, they need to be well-matched and there must be honesty (with yourself first, and then with anyone you consider a potential life partner).

I think it’s time for some non-vanilla pride! Break out the toys. Admit it if you find the same sex arousing. You don’t have to do anything about it (unless you want to), but at least have the courage to say it.

Our bodies were made for pleasure. Pleasure them.

Now, here is where I MUST reiterate what I said in my introduction post about consenting adults. Adults. Consenting. No kids and full, clear consent. I don’t see how I can make it any clearer than that. Moving on now…

I know I run the risk of TMI here (losing both friends and readers alike), so I’m not going to get overly detailed about my own personal life. After all, I’m a somewhat public (public-ish?) figure, but if Madonna (a uber-public figure) can publish a book “celebrating” her sex life, I think I’m safe in just extolling the virtues of freedom from shame in the bedroom (or on the  kitchen table, or by the train tracks…don’t ask) and I will freely admit that I am bi – something that, in this day and age, sometimes seems more taboo than coming out about being gay. I’ll also admit that, because of years of that shame thing, it took me decades to figure this out about myself. And, when you deny anything about yourself for so long, it causes nothing but confusion and frustration and general beating-yourself-up-ness.

Freedom. Honesty. Not shame, confusion and guilt.

I love orgasm! Orgasms are awesome. I love cumming hard and wet and strong. It’s therapeutic (to body as well and calming to the mind)! Marvin Gaye sung about “Sexual Healing” – well, there’s a lot (scientifically and medically) to that.  Yeah, maybe when it was written, it was just a sexy song to get into a girl’s pants – but still. I don’t know any form of physical exercise more pleasurable or with such an immediate reward for one’s effort!  (I just thought I’d add this bit, too…since I hadn’t delivered very much on the “explicit language” warning…)

I surely have more to share on this topic…but it’s all about knowing how to frame it; I think this may be more of a series of posts. When I wrote the introduction post yesterday (many days ago now), I wasn’t even quite sure what I wanted to say and where I wanted to go with this one. I feel I’ve just made a start. Thus, a “Let’s Talk About Sex, Baby” series (or, “Let’s CONTINUE To Talk About Sex, Baby” series).  These post won’t all be consecutive (after all, as I say, there is more to life), but I’d like to think an open discussion will help encourage the freedom I’m writing about. Hopefully, you, my readers (and listeners… ahem, singer/songwriter first here…there’s that “more to life” thing), will stay with me. If not, it’s been fun having you and I wish you well.

 

Ok, enough revising… I’m just going to hit post now and…uh, enjoy the afterglow.

 

 

http://www.autumndawnleader.com

All Things in Moderation, Including Being Extreme

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Extreme. Whenever I’ve encountered one of those survey/questionnaire thingies that ask you to “describe yourself in one word”, this is the word I usually choose.

The conflict arises when, in the endeavor to be a spiritual, soul conscious person, I am faced with the seemingly contradictory word: balance. A basic spiritual principle is “all things in moderation“.

When you take a look at moderation, it would appear that one could not be extreme and moderate at the same time. But, if that’s the case, no extremism allowed, I have found in my personal experience that moderation and balance quickly devolve into legalism. And, that’s just another form of extremism. Where, exactly, is the balance?

In addressing this for myself (I do not presume to tell you what you should do), I have come to the conclusion (after much consideration) that my way forward is to accept and embrace my extremeness (it’s a word now). However, I will not give myself over to complete abandonment to the extreme only, as I have done in times past. I intend to engage on a path of tempered extremism, exploring ALL aspects of my nature and enjoying what I can – both in the spiritual and physical realms.

In continuing to meditate and focus on the inner being, while allowing myself freedom to enjoy the full range of my sensuality, I will have a balance.

That’s the plan, anyway.

By Any Other Name (a big decision to make)

wpid-20140719_163024_20140720144052585.jpgI remember a long time ago when a publishing company wanted my mother (author and artist Ginilou DeMarco) to write her books under a non de plume (for the slightly less aware, an alias; for the just plain stupid, another name), she didn’t want to do it, and I couldn’t blame her. Part of having talent and sharing it is getting the credit for it as yourself. But, more and more I’m thinking that maybe, just perhaps, that is our ego talking: our bodies have these names, but our souls do not. And, so… I am considering releasing my next album under another name.

I love my name.  I always have.  My name is cool. It used to be very unique.  It isn’t anymore.  Unique, that is.  It is still cool (but, of course, I am biased).  I was proud of my name even back when people never got it right because only a very small handful of people had named their child “Autumn” (much less “Autumn Dawn” – I believe, I was the first…I may be wrong.  But, of all the Autumn Dawns I have subsuequently found out about, I am the oldest…making me the original since 1974) and I got called every other name starting with A instead of my name. Or, worse (and this still annoys me to this day, because I still get it occassionally), they would call me only by my middle name.  Ugh.  My name is Autumn Dawn.  Or just Autumn. It is NEVER “Dawn”!!!

In learning soul consciousness versus body consciousness (the internal and eternal as opposed to the external and temporary), I know that while this is my present name, it is not, however, who I am. This body’s name is Autumn Dawn, but I am a soul. And, the thing is, my music has never been successful under this name.

Now, the talent maybe associated with my body, I know.  But, creativity is a spiritual quality, an aspect of the eternal identity, the being or soul. And, specifically, music is definitely a spiritual thing.

So, these are my reasons for considering a release in another name.  Authors do it all the time (when they want to), and look at Prince, or the artist formally known as, Symbol, or whatever he is calling himself and releasing his music under these days.  And, many musical artists chose from the first to go by another name.  Of course, I know, Prince may not be a perfect example here, because he was successful as Prince…  but, yeah… anywho. Hopefully, you see my point.

While I am proud of my lovely name and proud of my gift (music), it isn’t much of a gift if it isn’t getting the exposure and getting out there.  A gift should be giving.  I have tried.  I have failed and failed and failed.  Well, “Autumn Dawn” has failed and failed anyway.

Thus, this serious consideration to release an album under another name (not sure what just yet).  I would really very much like to hear what other people (you, my readers) think about this.  Talk to me.  I’d appreciate some feedback here.  It’s a big decision.