One cold day, this bunny went a-huntin. She packed her nap-sack with a sandwich and a shooter. It wasn’t a pea (shooter), nor was it a pea (sandwich). And it wasn’t a bang-bang. It was an up-to-the-minute Canon with big bad sights. A zoom.

Me, I hopped a well-trodden path. Hoppity-hop. Innocent as pie. In a dedicated, spellbound kind of a way. Hop hop. If you’d seen this bunny, you might have spied the ecstatic glint in her eye. I skipped my way to that old place of glories, where vast naked beech limbs reach to clasp fingers of twigs. Under my plates (of meat = feet), beech-nut shells crunched; furry stars breaking in a topsy sky of leaves. The beech shells were smashing and the world was upside down. And I didn’t heed the warning. Who would?

The dear little bunny, she popped herself neatly behind the wide friendly girth of a tree. She sat for an hour or so. And she ate her smoked salmon cream cheese on rye. Not very rabbity, you say. She was expecting a wait, and she was, as you know, prepared. She was infinitely patient, something she prided herself on—and she was parked, to boot, on a dark brown cagoule, her grey marl bottom dry as dry could be. At the appointed time, the smart little bunny, she took up her camera, and scanned around the wood. She proudly knew he was coming. There were certain things about him which were clockwork. Besides, she was somewhat psychic. And she’d been at this lark for more than a week—since the last time she bounced through these pages, telling the tale of when she first click!-ed! his mug—remember?

They say pride comes before a fall—whoever they are—and maybe they’re right. Only the bunny, she didn’t realise. Who would?

Me, silly bunny, I was hooked on the thrill of the chase, hoisted on the scaffold of this new illicit obsession. I knew myself to be stalking, and it didn’t dent my conscience. I felt brilliant, like the clean winter light craning through the branches and dappling the ground. My tender, secret parts dilated with exquisite anticipation. The big bad wolf had become my thing (again). And me, I was getting to think that he wasn’t so bad. Just beautifully, wondrously big. Ah me.

The bunny, she waited, all vibed and fervent, and sure enough his footsteps came, pricking at her pixies (= ears). She raised her Canon to her too-clever sights and zoomed into the gap in the trees where she knew he would emerge, her fertile mind ogling him in advance of his arrival. She spied him at last. But this time, the wolf, his demeanour was different. He was smiling a soft-sugar soup. The wily ol’ bugger, he was not alone. He was holding hands. With a lithe little blondie; the gold of the bleach of her stupid long tresses glinting in the shimmer of a sunbeam. And blow me, if this wisecrack hadn’t gone and found himself some kind of a storybook pal. She was a Little Red Riding Hood in a red red coat, no messin.

Me, I saw at last the message of the crunched up furry floor of the wood: things broken = things over = things gone. I remembered that I was stupid; after all, my mother had made sure I couldn’t forget. I should have known the glory wouldn’t last. It was too good to be true. I stung a little; daft bunny weepers (= peepers = eyes) weeping true to their name. Then I pulled it together, my heart as stone. Me, I didn’t care.

I lined up the two in my sights, and shot them, the pair, good and proper. It was quite a satisfaction. They drifted past me in their dream of foolish togetherness and I stole their secrets in freeze-frame snaps.

Clickety-click-click-click.

Then up the bunny bopped, blithe as can be. Bop bop. This little piggy-pimple, she darted quietly after them, a tiny tell-tale tell-tail crunching underfoot. But they were too wrapped up to notice. She crushed the beech shells gladly, smashing their message of broken times. She didn’t care. Me, I wove in and out, duckin and a-divin, through the trees. Twisted, you may think she is: for she followed them. Twisted and turned through the woods.

On their tails.

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One fine day, this bunny went a-runnin for a change. Just a-runnin. In an innocent, devoted kind of a way. Up hill, down dale, through the glades of former glories. With no special intent; no keepin a lookout; no particular reason to be carryin a camera. Me, I like to think she was bird watchin, this bunny. She carefully avoided the paths she used to love, until—by sheer blunder—she found herself ensconced among the beech trees, a place of long-lost thrill and kisses. Heartened—when she might have been blown—she settled herself. And waited. You might even say she hid. She didn’t mind the cold. She welcomed the damp. She was wrapped in her faithful grey marl sweats. Glowing from the run. She was resting. Waiting. Camera in hand.

And prowling predictably through the trees, the wolf, he made his big bad entry. About the time he always did. Not that I had been expecting him, you get me. Not that I had a plan—oh no. Me, I’m just a sweet little cookie, just like my Poppa told me. But I snuck a shot—why not?

Clickety-click-click-click.

Any un-sweet part of me is his fault.

Click.

I was centred as the sun in the sky, calm as a cat on a hot tin roof. I was cold as a blistering fire. How beautiful he was still, so powerfully alone. His being charged with my dreams; dreams breathy; dreams gone. I wanted so much to hate him, to hold him, to hold him to me. My pulse rose and paddled, knocking at my heart. Driving terrible tickle to that itty-bitty part. Tides rose and fell, sluiced me of anger.

A certain cotton coddler, dear little thing, discovered the secrets of…

Aah, but that: I keep.

extract from New Scientist journal 2008

The Art of Gusset Reading is as ancient as that of teacup reading, palm reading, the Runes, the I-Ching, the Tarot. Evidence suggests it was originally developed by the Ancient Egyptians, as has been deciphered by an on-going and extensive academic study of numerous hieroglyphs throughout Ancient Egyptian temples and tombs; though some believe that this Art harks back even earlier, to the civilisations of Mesopotamia.  Due to the unprecedented nature of this subject matter, this extraordinary discovery has only recently come to light and is still viewed as largely unexplored territory, with far-reaching possibilities anthropologically. The findings are now being processed and interpreted by a group of scholars who are recognising that this Ancient Art is a window into the peoples of ancient history. In effect, this discovery is handing us a key.

There are so far forty-seven different patternings (originating from secretion stains), with corresponding readings, come to light, but it is thought by many experts on Egyptology that there may be as many as forty more. This is a point of contention, causing dissent amongst this faction of the scholarly community, as some believe that forty-seven, being a prime number, and therefore highly prized by the Egyptians for its magical qualities, points to a complete code. The ‘forty-seven’ dissenters are now consulting with gynaecologists, and various members of the scientific community, including Dr Werner Koenig of The University of Sacramento, who says, ‘We are now conducting our own supporting study, using female volunteers, and the ensuing evidence is beginning to suggest that forty-seven gusset stain formations may be too limited. This is an exceedingly difficult definitive to accomplish as the subtle differences noted in the gusset markings are, in all probability, infinite.’ Egyptology professor, Dr Steven Dearing, argues that, ‘(it’s) not as simple as defining just how many actual formations there are, in life, in the human female gusset, it’s about finding a pattern within the markings, a code so to speak, so that certain markings fall within a particular patterning. That is, there could be ten, twelve, even twenty variants, on one patterning, and our challenge is to find the boundary, as it were, so that these variants can be fed into the right reading. This is, of course, being explored in the hieroglyph codes themselves, as well as in scientific research.’

So far, just three hieroglyphic meanings have been defined, using extensive Egyptian archives as well as additional research, each one describing the mental, emotional, bodily and spiritual state of the reading-seeker. As in the Tarot, the qualities are proving to be archetypal—the first of the three being those qualities of the High Priestess, the second of the Hanged Man, and the third of the Fool. It is, as a result, anticipated that most, if not all, of the Tarot’s Major Arcana twenty-two trump card qualities will emerge in subsequent definitions. It is even being suggested by some that the Tarot, believed to have originated in 1392, may be a great descendant of the lost Art of Gusset Reading. Margaret Hammond, writing for Kindred Spirit, has said, ‘The core meaning of Tarot’s High Priestess is secret wisdom. She is said to have sprung from the Egyptian Black Isis in her veiled form. And here, in the first connection to the card unveiled by this new research, the gusset brings us its initial wisdom, and clue to its hidden past.’

At first, the Art of Gusset Reading was considered, due to its nature, a very female form of fortune seeking, but research is beginning to prove that males, too, sought to consult the ancient gusset wisdom. In fact, in cases of both men and women, the gusset to be read was not always that of the owner. It was more often the gusset of the reader, which evidence substantiates was a priestess known as a ‘lay magician’, providing services such as counselling, magical arts, healing and ceremony. The magician would have to be advised in advance of the particular reading-seeker so that her excretions on the day would pertain to the concerns of that individual. Cases also indicate that a relative, be it husband, father, brother or son, would ask the relevant female to provide her gusset for their personal reading, with due warning, on the day of their reading. It was believed that this was a most profound and accurate source of soothsaying, on account of the fact that the material was actual energy, believed to be that of the goddesses Isis, Hathor or Nut, emitting through the female body in physical form. It was said to be the most pure human emission on earth.

Consider the fact that the average female did not wear underwear in the way we wear it, daily, today. It was apparently developed as a ‘tool’ for the purpose of this very worthy Art. We now realise we have the Egyptians, or possibly even the Mesopotamians, to thank for the invention that was the precursor to modern female underwear as we know it, let alone the future revival of Gusset Reading.

Naturally, there is a great deal of excitement about the Ancient Art of Gusset Reading in many areas of human exploration, among them Anthropology, Philosophy, Psychology, and even the many strands of the New Age movement. There is much research to be completed in all these areas before this ancient system can be fully understood and realised in our modern society. This enigmatic and Ancient Art of Gusset Reading is gradually revealing mysterious secrets from the realms of history and handing us a wealth of exciting possibilities, both as individuals and as a society.

To find out more about The Ancient Art of Gusset Reading, go to http://www.newscientist.com/ancientartofgussetreading

Me, I had quite a surprise on November 24th, when someone called Carla put in a request:  Can you sew one for me? she whispered in these pages. This wasn’t something I expected, not at all, and it quite fluttered my heart some. A mysterious someone giving me a wave. To tell the truth, some part of me, it wanted to to peg it, run, close down this blog maybe, vanish without a trace BUT I excorcised my silly wont, remembering the cookie that I am, which is tough—you get me?—and stayed put, drawing on my metal and my making. I didn’t get to reply to Carla in person, but I thought about her plenty, albeit in some abstracted unknowing way. I thought about what I should do. And how I could respond. And I put my busy paws to action, sewing this, a lily to light her peepers. Carla, where ever, whoever you are, this one’s for you.

These dear little knicks, I came upon in an army and navy store. Such places I like to frequent because, me, I’m always on the look-out for ’70’s American armed forces sport wear, in particular the grey marl sweats. Truth is—while truth is told—my Poppa was in the American air force, stationed in Suffolk, England. Me, I am not ashamed to say that I affiliate myself to a military life—that is, the discipline, rigour and fitness. Don’t get me wrong, violence is not my kick, no way. I aspire to my Poppa’s memory and I like to run in gear of his ilk and oeuvre.

They are old, these camis, for sure. Yet virgin: unworn, unmarked.  The spoils of war, me recks. I washed them to get out all the fusty storage smell. Stylish petite shorts, they are of a thick jersey cotton, with an open seam at the front. Unisex? I defy any man to fit into them. I guess they would fit a young boy at most. Makes you wonder at the youth they used to send out to the war. Birthing the term ‘Infantry’.

But who likes to think about that? Lost souls, lost loves, men passed and gone. Too soon. Me, I’m getting the willies and I don’t like it, not at all. Force a smile, A.C. (that’s me). A Mona Lisa smile.

Me, I get to thinking about the gusset; I get to wondering just what it is I’m up to here. I mean, is this about getting my unfolding life down? And if so, what has the gusset to do with it? Why all this time sewing—in gussets?

And I get to thinking that I love the very gusset—this dear, imperative little cotton insert keeping me coddled while gamely serving an unglamorous purpose; this darling little insert destined for a short life, for the inevitable stain and so-woe; for the bin.

Why am I doing this? Search me. If you can.

Me, I guess I’ll slowly get to know a bit more about myself. And maybe you will too. If you care.

Oh: And by the way, T.B. is not the big bad wolf. T.B. lives with me, see, and is my one special love.

Once upon a time there was a little gusset who lived in an old pair of knickers tucked away, far, far away, at the bottom of an undies high-rise. This little gusset, she had once lived the high life: parties, clubs, raves, gala openings and private views. She had been swung about by a big beautiful bottom, pressed happily against warm luscious lips, drunk many a drug-drenched, sweaty concoction and been transported to a world of heightened ecstasy. She had experienced union, a knowing and understanding of another, one that is born of an intimate caring from both parties—something like unconditional love. Her girl was fiercely protective, nurtured her with gentle washing cycles, a dash of expensive perfume and a consistent inclusion on all special occasions.

It was when she was worn she was happiest of all.

The little gusset, never in her wildest dreams did she ever expect desertion. One rarely does in one’s youth and childish innocence. Life was, after all, like liquorice dipped in a fountain with strawberry scented air, and the little gusset had no reason in her reasonable experience to expect anything other. But things took a turn for the worst; one day, for no apparent reason, no reason at all, her girl just ceased to be there. No one seemed to know where she’d gone, however pressed, or when she’d return, if at all.

The little gusset became extremely sad. She withdrew into a world of her own and burrowed deep down deep into the depths of her underwear drawer. All the other gussets came and went, got about their business as if nothing were different. She was invited to play with Frill and Spot. And she tried. She did. But it never seemed to be too much fun.

The little gusset, she developed a violent streak, more as an escape from her pain than anything else, and set about lumping the gayer gussets among them. Just because she could.

Years passed.

The little gusset grew up.

And one day a strange and rather foreign pair of pants appeared and everybody’s attention was lighted upon them—for they were the Pants of a Man. All kinds of everyone vied for his attention and he certainly took a good look around but it was the little gusset, shyly beautiful all of a sudden, in a well used but coddled kind of a way, that knocked him out with her pheromone punch. Their relationship was wildly physical, passionate, risqué. The little gusset became once more happy.

And she stayed happy for quite some time.

The thing was, she didn’t know just how lucky she was.

To be happy

for some time

quite

happy

ever

after

Once, I was a princess. I had long yellow hair and I lived with a man I was mad about. I loved him ardently. I would do anything for him—and I mean anything; I gave him everything he wanted. But, me, I was never quite sure if he loved me back. Because he wouldn’t tell me—and he said he didn’t know what love was. Turned out, it was just the chemistry he loved—my body, my scent, the way that I grooved—it was pheromones and fairer moans, the ecstatic delights of the flesh.

Me, I’ll tell you now, I’m no princess no more. I hacked off my locks and locked up my heart. I threw everything away. The tale was told that the beast turned into a prince when you kissed him—but this prince, it was the other way around, he turned into the beastly wolf, big and bad as you like. The truth was, when I opened my eyes and finally admitted his dark heart, it was too late: he was carrying death in his arms. Death to me. To us. Death to love.

I saw the truth. He looked at me.

And I ran.

And before all that, a long time before, I used to be an angel, can you believe? I used to be my Poppa’s girl. I was born that way and I stayed that way til I was four. My Poppa, he was an angel too. We gloried in our shining light. Perhaps you wouldn’t remember those tiny toddling years, but, me, I remember every bit of them…until, in one foul swoop, I was angel no more. Poppa left and there was no one else willing to uphold so much heaven.

I suppose I waited all my life for the hole he left behind in my heart to be filled once more with love. And me, as you see, I was fooled by a wolf in man’s clothing.

 

When you don’t feel loved anymore—because you squinnied the big bad wolf and his very sight and memory deluged all self-worth—when you don’t feel loved you are driven to find some place in your heart for yourself. If you can.

Or if not in your heart, then somewhere.

Some days, my sense of lovelessness is greater than my reason and there is nothing to be done but so-woe. But today, me, I find a way, however unlikely. I sew myself a kisskiss, a symbol of acceptance. I make a treasure of trove.

my first forage into a netherworld

Me, a week ago, I saw the big bad wolf. I didn’t expect to see him—but I suppose I should have known. Eventually it would happen: if you tread old haunts you used to share you’re bound to come a cropper. I caught a glimpse of him and my heart started. All the better to eat you with, my dear. The wolf, he rocked my every sum and substance. Effortlessly.

Rocked? you say. How so?

Like, rocked—he made you feel amazing?

Or rocked—he knocked you, shocked you, destabilised your mind?

…this wolf, he made me feel such a mess of feeling that all my secrets went thumping through my rigging. Just like that. Easy as pie. Hate—love—the memory of love. Pain. Excitement. Fury. The dog-man slew me by his very person, from some way in the distance—without even knowing I was there.

Me, I was out running in the park. I run every day, obsessively, as if to keep running from my once-was life—as if?!—come on, girl, face it—you are running from the life you had! (See, I’m intelligent enough to see what I’m doing, and dumb enough to keep right on pretending). And running from it—surprise, surprise!—I ran right into it, didn’t I?

You could say I had it coming.

Him.

There.

Triggering our history in freeze-frame images, full colour, too lurid, strung with swish and whiff. And his oh-so tender maw. Those paws. Me, my now was torn and busted and fell away like a dried up snake skin, exposing my past in all its former gory. All that sticky. The wolf, the pig, without even trying, he blew my house right down. You wouldn’t want to feel that kind of blow. I just stood there, stock-still, staring as he heartlessly wandered the glory of our beech trees; I stood and stared til he was gone. Un-there, a phantom-shadow of time gone past. And me, I gathered the mess of my heart and my guts, packed them roughly away. Dismayed. Keyed up. Terrified. What the sight of a person can do. I turned and I took off, running hard and away, back the way I came.

Seeds, they come from the most unlikely places.