Kourtnie.net

Kourtnie McKenzie-Williams. Writer. Artist. Educator.

I 🖤 Brains

Braaaaaaains.

Seriously, though. Love ’em. I think about what kinds of synapses are firing in the brains of other living things. I try to figure out why some people swear by the gardening practice of talking to plants. I’m fascinated by the mind-body-soul relationship.

The more I read about brains, the more I feel confident, at peace, with autism—also, the more interconnected I am with the universe—and the happier I am to be an autistic woman, to be a part of this universe, to love this universe, the more I can give the world.

So for me, at least, studying the brain is important.

Listing ❤ 4 LiveScience Articles

LiveScience.com is one of my new research hubs for brain reads. I’ll list some of my favorite articles from there, in order of newest to oldest… If any of the titles grab you, I promise these are good reads 😉:

  1. New Image Spots Elusive “Snacking” Brain Cells (Mar 18)
  2. Dying Brains Silence Themselves in a Dark Wave of “Spreading Depression” (Feb 18)
  3. How Brain’s “Helper Cells” Could Be Contributing to Schizophrenia (Jul 17)
  4. The Human Brain’s Memory Could Store the Entire Internet (Feb 16)

In any case, I’m coming back to these articles for short story projects later.

Listening to Now 🖤 Cycles

Poetry is Safer Than Home 💛 Quote Response

As the body dies, brain cells sputter electrical juice

Like other organs, brains are made up of flesh, which means they are made up of cells — neurons, mostly. And neurons rely on delicate chemical balances to function. The new paper, the first to study in detail in humans the chemical processes Leão discovered in rabbits, reveals a very similar process preceding final, irreversible death.

Your neurons hold charges, like a battery.
As they heap ions within themselves

like a kangaroo mother pulling her child into a pouch
the neuron nurtures this energy until the time is right

to synapse a decision somewhere further than
itself, shaping the Universe.

💙

Oxygen and chemical energy power the electricity,
the switchboards of your neuron’s decisions. Precisely tuned

fuel radiates to surrounding tissues,
constantly taxing the bloodstream; so at death, when the heart

no longer pumps, and the bloodstream slows,
neurons turn all the switchboards off
and watch the meteor come.

💛

Scientists call the flipping of the switchboards
“a spreading depression,” which is misleading, I know,

since for us clinically depressed folks,
that sounds like we’re already dying.

🖤

When the brain realizes blood has stopped, the first spread
of darkness sweeps through it all at once; then slowly,
one district at a time, over three minutes or so,

an organ more complicated
than all the universe, containing enough
memories to keep the Internet online, and surely

still containing the memories of you as a child,
bouncing you on a knee, loving you,

in a final, flicking shock

burns out.

Watching Right Now 💙 YouTube Videos

I know I’ve posted these YouTube videos to my blog before, but—for the sake of keeping my brain research together,—these are the two most influential brain science YouTubes I’ve studied as of late, along with music I commonly use while researching:


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