|I took this from the bank of the Thames river. The left frame is two inches higher than the horizon of the other panel, but I still think this is one of my best panoramas from England.|
Through the Fire (Untitlted 3/4/15 Revised)Through the Fire (Untitlted 3/4/15 Revised) by H-A-Cooke
I look in the mirror at a disconnect
all I want is common decency and respect
I'm constantly told I "seek attention"
that loving men and women shouldn't be mentioned
I'm forced to swallow bitter pills
to settle my stomach, shut my eyes
take Adversity as a golden prize -
This is who I am, not a live I chose
to have my romantic inclinations thrown to carrion crows
Gays sayin' I must be blind and confused
finding my affection by Straights refused
because loving women must mean I'm loose.
I'm here to tell you set aside misconceptions
My actions have no intent of deception
My experiences are real, my feelings valid
both heart and mind in equal balance
Take me as I am or not at all
I decide when, and how, and for whom I fal
Already Burning (4/23/2015) "You'll Burn in Hell"Already Burning (4/23/2015) by H-A-Cooke
They say with a capital 'B' and
all the conviction of "pious" privelage
condemning me to a worse fate
in their flawed thinking than even Jezebel suffered -
Not realizing I am already BURNING from the inside out,
soaking up SLURS and words like "phase", "attention seeker"
and "faggot" like kerosene.
My kindling the truth of my
LIFE... The line I balance a tight rope of erasure -
as if MY BODY belongs to one
side or another. Indeed each
"Team" an unbreakable line of linked hands -
legs sore from running a constant round of "Red Rover"
No one playing for keeps.
My voice ragged from proclaiming:
I AM MADE IN THEIR IMAGE!
For higher powers are - much like my LOVE and ATTRACTION -
non-existent in the cap
Come High Water (4/19/2015) I'll unstrap my cushion from my chestCome High Water (4/19/2015) by H-A-Cooke
(using my last breath to inflate my life vest)
For as strong a swimmer as I am -
there are no webs on my feet, no blowholes to expend air -
I can only hold my breath for thirty seconds
not nearly long enough to shed the dead weight of your smile
No matter how it warms me inside
You only distract me from fighting for my own life.
I work as an Associate Project Manager in the Health Care industry for my company! I work full time, as well as continuing Free Lance editing for novels, poetry, short stories and essays. |
I love music, the violin, reading, writing, collecting, sports, movies and television. I consider myself an amateur photographer and hope to flourish that skill as well as dapple in drawing!
[COMING SOON: FIND ME ELSEWHERE]
As you’ve no doubt noticed, I Watch+ techgnotic! I’m always interested
in the articles he’s sharing with groups he’s in or the wider deviantArt site! He
always picks intriguing topics to highlight – ones that spark questions of
creativity, morality, world issues, etcetera.
This particular topic reaches “close to home” due to my goal of completing a Super-Hero novel of my own (perhaps even a series). You can find the full
Realm of Possibilities: Superhuman
Realm of Possibilities: Superhuman
Naga by armandeo64
Foreword by techgnotic
Our guest editorialist, the nameless one, founder of Realm-of-Fantasy is known on DeviantArt as alltheoriginalnames and he is the Keeper of the Realm—that Realm being the renowned Realm of Fantasy Group, the largest fantasy and science fiction group curation on the web. He is the Administrator for poseraddicts, a dA group for 3D artists and the founder of Creationarium. The editors of
I mainly post my answers to my personal journal for two reasons:
Isolate my thoughts from the 1,000+ Comments of the Journal
To spread the articles farther across deviantArt to my Watchers+
Below are my thoughts on the Origins and Literary purpose of Superhumans,
and my answers the questions posted on the journal!
Origins of Superhumans
The world of Superhumans, as we know it today, began in the early 1920s in Amercian culture. Then the Great War (World War I) broke out, and comic
artists and television producers latched on to a future - our present (1950s
and beyond) - which included the “outbreak” of heroes like Captain America
(World War II), Superman (an alien with super-human strength),
The Doctor (1963), and the X-Men to name a few.
As John Ronald Rowl Tolkien and Clive Staples Lewis before them, comic
writers in the late 1920s and early 1930s were experiencing, what to them,
must have been the end of civilized and moral community. Something so
morally, physically, emotionally unbearable that it would take something great
than humanity - someone greater than “normal humans” to cope with threats
And so were born the string of heroes that have seen a poular resurgence since the late 1990s. You may be wondering, what does Batman (a “stronger that
average” human) have in common with Superman or the X-Men?
All fit under the moniker Vigilante. People stronger than average – some with
greater ability and super-human qualities - who stand outside the broken and fractured Justice System to exact the Law by means outside the law.
And people flocked to the comic shops to get the latest issue: Why, you may
Because, they wanted to escape the horror they were experiencing and believe,
even for the shortest of moments, that they could hope for a better tomorrow.
Resurgence of Superhumans and Superheroes
If the idea of “more than human” gave hope to people whose society was breaking down around them, you are probably asking on question:
Why in the mid-2000s, when the world seems for all intents and purposes
to be “better than it ever was”, has there been a resurgence in popularity
and re-creation of super-heroes?
I am going to say: For the same reasons as the mid 1920s – late 1930s.
People want to hope for a better tomorrow, hope that someone
greater than themselves, more capable than average, will stand up to protect
their writes, their families when Law and Justice fail them.
Then you may wonder: What causes this need for hope?
There are many answers to this question, but they all stem from the same reason Middle Earth and Narnina were created. And can be summed up by one word: WAR. People are constant war: for their rights, to prove their strength in times of terrorist attacks, and to fight for equal rights.
And, just as in their origins, heroes like: Oliver Queen (Green Arrow), Bruce
Wayne (Bat Man), Superman (Clarke Kent), Barry Allen (the Flash),
Wonder Woman, The Canary (Laurel Lance), and even Felicity Smoak - band together to take Justice and Law into their own hands.
And some, like Oliver Queen and Batman, work directly with the Police and find
allies willing to understand their fight. Allies like Police Commissioner Gordon
and Police Chief Lance. But, even Gordon and Lance struggle to reconcile the importance of Vigilantes against their morals, what they’ve been taught
is the “correct system” and “correct process” of Law and Justice.
Even I, the more I come to understand oppressed groups and the fight they are waging for equal rights, am working on a Superhero story I started brainstorming in 2008, to take place in 2016. Yet, on the cusp of 2015 my target year has
changed to 2080 – a far distant future I may not (realistically will not) live to see.
Yet, I construct a new world from my familiar one. A world where circumstances are different – a world were Superhumans are protected and “watched” by the Government. Which brings us to the questions posed at the end of
1. If superhumans were discovered to exist, would they be honored as the
next generation of our evolutionary heritage, or hunted and killed and
capturedas an alien threat?
I believe the reaction would be much as it was in X-Men. The governments
of the world would seek to control the population of Superhumans, capture
them – not as a threat – but to study them and use them to lead and create
Some, if their powers lay outside of human understanding – like Rogue’s power
which sucks the life (or power) out of a human (superhuman) - would be
considered threats. They would be put under surveillance in labs to
dissect and understand them. Being “not quite human” I can foresee Laws
being created that classified sueprhumans as “not human” to avoid the morality
question - is it wrong to experiment on someone, dissect them, if they are
I think it’s entirely possible a Register would become law – so Supers
could be regulated and “trained”.
2. You’ve had a lifetime since childhood to decide, so here’s the question: What is the ONE super-power you would choose to possess (and why)?
I would want to be able to have healing powers (like the Water-Benders in Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend of Kora). My thoughts often turn to how to
create a society that helps each other – perpetuates the importance of “love they neighbor as yourself.”
I think it’s more realistic to believe that powers would come with trade-offs – even powers that focus on healing and rejuvenation.
3. Will there always be a separation between A.I. androids and humans,
even if it’s virtually impossible to distinguish between without an autopsy?
Could androids supersede humans as the next evolution of humanity? Or, just
the opposite, if androids are forever officially designated as machines,
will they be abused in “slavery” scenarios?
A good book to read, and one that heavily influences my answer is: Phillip K. Dick “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” (known more commonly in its movie adaptation (soon to have a sequel: Blade Runner).
Humanity wants to be perceived and treated with the respect of an Alpha. Since humans first became self-aware, they have maintained that the ability to feel, acknowledge and interpret self – emotionally, spiritually and physically – is what us human.
The biggest question of identity in the novel (the twist is you will) is: Is Decker
himself an Android? Or is he human? END SPOILERS
Even if autopsy is the only way to distinguish humans from androids, Humans will always maintain the need and want to be viewed and treated as superior.
If there were a way to create androids without the presence of metal or wires,
as the models in Dick’s world I think it’s possible that – given the programming of emotions and the ability to self-identify androids could be seen as “more human.” Humans after all are becoming ‘more robotic” with the invention of cybernetics
and prosthetics - remember Oscar Pistoris’ legs, looked more inhuman with their curves and spring-loaded mechanism.
That being said, I think that humans – above all else – are social creatures. I think the original creation for Androids will be much as it was for Anakin on Tattoine: creating cyber friends to help him feel less lonely and maybe to follow his every order to clean the house.
It will start out – the creation of A.I. – to follow the orders of humans. But, as technology and the need for sentient companionship becomes more and more
acute – I think A.I.’s will become ‘more human’ – in the sense that people want
other people around – even if those people require software and hardware. I’m not sure,at least not in my lifetime, that the world will become as it is in Terminator
I do think, if A.I.’s reached the sentient means of Humans, or were designed or
even still marketed at machines, that people would eventually realize that
enslaving them was immoral – even though I think they would still be treated as second class citizens. It’s not a good side of human nature – but it’s true that
humans like being dominant and will find any way to do so.
4. Are all-powerful/ every-vigilantly protecting superheroes simply the
fantasies of powerless common citizens despairing of every finding peace or
justice in our dysfunctional system of laws, cops and courts?
Yes, superheroes are, in their essence and origin, born of despair. Even “modern day heroes,” like Katniss Everdeen or Beatrice Prior, come from worlds that are rebuilding after war. But, that being said, superheroes are born from the strongest human emotion and motivation:
That’s why, in my opinion, there has been a resurgence of superheroes: beginning with vigilantes like Batman, Arrow and the Flash. Our world, despite being more advances, is falling apart. World-wide economies have crashed (2008). Civil Wars rage/raged (Syria) and sicknesses broke out (Ebola: Africa).
Outside of world-wide degradation, many societies are constantly facing the
outdated laws and justice systems that have been in their countries since their foundations. In a technological age – with all the progresses in medicine,
technology, media - the Law and Justice systems seem stuck in pre-Millennium stasis. There are Blue Laws (laws put in place decades ago that are still on record) in almost every state.
Aside from the law themselves, the Justice systems of the world are clogged by as much bureaucracy and corruption as the political landscape. That’s where
characters like Oliver Queen (Arrow) and Police Chief Lance and Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Captain Gordon win their popularity.
Teams of people, using their wealth and experience to help clean up the
streets in tandem with Police, who struggle with the immorality of vigilante’s
while at the same time fighting back against a corrupted system.
That’s the appeal in Arrow and Batman. Even the appeal in X-Men. At the end of
the day, comics fans are aware that vigilantes are committing crimes (especially
Arrow – whose first year of crime fighting included premediated murder).
Even Batman, whose M.O. is to catch and imprison his enemies (an M.O.
ruined by the existence of The Suicide Squad [which is something meant
for another post entirely]), is still doing so against the law, under the anonymity
of a pseudonym.
On the other side of the coin, are government affiliated heroes: X-Men and The Avengers. Monitored by the government – and facing the added challenge of
using their real names. The loss of anonymity – and added question of “super
powers” giving an “unfair advantage” – means that questions of morality becomes more difficult to defend on either hand.
I agree fully with one aspect that links all comic heroes together: Our Law and
Justice systems are dysfunctional – and superheroes give us hope that there is
power within everyone (even us normal folk) to help reconstruct – shown through the embodiment of PD like Lance and Gordon.
5. Are superheroes simply the expression of our in-born instinct to survive
to be the most we can be, mentally and physically?
I don’t think this question is ‘simple.’ I do agree, fully, that humans want to survive. We want to be superior mentally and physically. That’s one motivation for the
creation of Captain America.
In Cap, named Steven Rogers, we see the motivation of Americans searching for Hope. Hope against the Axis Powers – hope that someone can lead and inspire others to fight for the protection and preservation of American freedom. He starts,
as all comic readers are, as a civilian wanting to give back, to fight - Steve Rogers: who experience health and other issues that block him from military service.
He transforms, through the use of pseudo-science, into Captain America: faster, stronger than he was before. But only because, adverse to earlier trials, he is
morally sound and compassionate.
The X-Men (and other more human heroes like Katniss Everdeen) begin as
“normal people” – whose latent powers are enhanced by radiation.
Both, I will even argue ALL SUPERHEREOS, are met with fear. Anyone
that doesn’t fit into boxes are met with fear. Distrust. Hatred.
However, I think it’s telling that humans are still obsessed with enhancing ourselves. Medicine has advanced farther than we could expect. And, movies like
Lucy prove that we are still bent on unlocking our natural powers – even to the extent of enhancing them. Which begs the question:
How much will society have to degenerate for superheroes to become irrelevant?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on superheroes and superhumans. It’s a subject I’ve thought about recently – as I’ve begun to read comics, look back onto shows like
Kim Possible, and fallen in love with The Hunger Games, Guardians of the Galaxy and found myself asking: What super power would I want?
And, because I’m working on my own “hero story.” I think, too, in modern world we all have the potential to be a hero to those around us. Especially through compassion, love, friendship and through our art and writing.
If you want to respond I’d love to hear your thoughts, as well as recommendations for topics you want to see discussed.
For those who missed Hales Herald Issue 18 (20 June 2015):</b>
Thanks for tuning in!
Fast Forward To: Motivational Monday: So You Say I’m an Artist :
|I am the Founder of one group and Co-Founder of many. Many of the groups I am in give Point Prizes for the contest winners. In order to help out my fellows, and still be able to use points I bought for myself, I need a hand!|