The Planet Earth Issue Volume 19, Issue 1, August 2019
VOLUME 19 ISSUE 1 AUGUST 2019
“Nature never did betray / The heart that loved her” WILLIAM WORDSWORTH (1770-1850)
LITERATURE 26 I’m amazing.
4 the era of apathy
The Evil Forest
28 Pianists With Broken
6 Why It Rains Slowly
8 Save The Earth
BECKY VON SCHWERM
CAMILLE DEHGHAN & D.O. TAYLOR
10 hibernation SCOTT LU
12 routine SCOTT LU 14 just go
21 haunt me SCOTT LU
24 Gardening RACHEL PANICO
Inside Back D.O. TAYLOR
EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief Stephanie Silva email@example.com
Production Manager Camille Dehghan firstname.lastname@example.org
The Planet Earth Issue
Literary Editor Rachel Panico email@example.com
Art/Photography Manager Kelly Xu firstname.lastname@example.org
Romotions Manager Desiree Streef email@example.com
Events Manager Diane Taylor
Web Editor Arman Aryanpour
Four years ago, I had the opportunity to trek across part of Iceland’s Vatnajökull glacier. I’ve never felt smaller than I did between the glacier’s towering, icy ridges. I’ve never felt more horrifically powerful than I did when my guide pointed out the horizontal lines that marked the surrounding cliffs. Those lines were evidence of the glacier’s recession, a process that has sped up immensely because of human activity. Those lined cliffs were a visual timeline of climate change.
Interns Isabella Andrade, Alicia Lavigne
Camille Dehghan, Stephanie Silva, Isabella Andrade, Desiree Streef, Andre Bourgeois, Diane Taylor, Rachel Panico, Alicia Lavigne, Kelly Xu
Scott Lu, Maria Sayde, Britney Hoang, Bukunmi Oyewole, Catarina Nascimento, Cheryl Zhang, Helena Nascimento, James Silk, Sydney MacDonald, Becky Von Schwerm
Climate change. That term seems to be everywhere recently and, frankly, I’m terrified. Our top scientific minds are telling us that the earth is in crisis and the Internet has exploded. Most days I’m afraid to look at my news feeds, but I make myself do it because every frightening post or article is proof that many of us are listening to the warning signs of our planet. If we force ourselves to look at the ugly truths, the recession lines on glacial cliff sides, we might just be compelled to fight for the beauty that remains. In this issue of Blueprint, we asked our contributors to join in on the media explosion and to fight for our home. As you read through this issue, please celebrate the beauty that our artists have captured, but also find hope in their fears. I know I do.
President, Publisher, & Chair Aaron Hagey Executive Director Lakyn Barton HR Manager Maneesha Suresh Finance Manager Randy Moore Advertising Manager Kurtis Rideout Web Manager Sam Nabi Director Alyssa Di Sabatino Community Director Emily Crump, Rosalind Horne, Arshy Mann
CONTACT Blueprint Magazine 75 University Ave W Waterloo ON N2L 3C5 p 519.884.0710 x3564 blueprintmagazine.ca Advertise firstname.lastname@example.org blueprintmagazine.ca/advertise Contribute email@example.com blueprintmagazine.ca/contribute
COLOPHON Blueprint is the official student magazine of the Wilfrid Laurier University community. Founded in 2002, Blueprint is an editorially independent magazine published by Wilfrid Laurier University Student Publications, Waterloo, a corporation without share capital. WLUSP is governed by its board of directors. Content appearing in Blueprint bears the copyright expressly of their creator(s) and may not be used without written consent.
Stephanie Silva Editor-in-Chief
Planet Earth by Jasmin-Nicole As an artist, I am inspired by the natural environment, my dreams, memories, and people. I use paint as a medium to document the passage of time. My art captures and emphasizes the emotions of people and fleeting moments. Furthermore, I seek to immortalize the beauty of everyday items that are subject to decay. My painting on the Planet Earth Issue cover is a self-portrait. The green, blooming landscape is inspired by the beauty of life.
Blueprint reserves the right to re-publish submissions in print or online. Opinions in Blueprint are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Blueprint’s management, Blueprint, WLUSP, or WLU. Blueprint is created using Macintosh computers running Adobe Creative Suite.
the era of apathy ALICIA LAVIGNE
as one person, can I really make a difference? it seems whatever I do, the world will still end I do not want to waste away at 50 but how can I stop it? my future is near how near it is but what does it hold in store for me, for all of us? weâ€™ve inherited the ruins of a golden empire expected to morph into alchemists to create a more efficient world from nothing our prized years do we spend them fixing the mistakes of the past? or live our final days playing in the dust?
Why It Rains Slowly ISABELLA ANDRADE A child and their grandmother were out for a walk when it started to rain. The child asked, “why does rain come down so slowly? Why does it not come down all at once?” The grandmother replied with this story: A long time ago, Creator made the earth and sky, the rivers and oceans, and all living things. They would water all the plants and trees individually from Their watering can. They had not yet created the rain. A long time later, there lived a Young Man. He was a very talented musician and could play any instrument he found. He was also very adept at creating his own songs. Everyone in the village enjoyed his music.
Young Man once met a young woman and instantly she became his True Love. She enjoyed gardening, swimming, dancing, and singing. Young Man would play music for True Love, and they would sing and dance together, and fell in love with each other. Unfortunately, all her life, True Love had anxiety and trouble sleeping. She tried all sorts of cures: herbs, exercise, meditation. Nothing helped. Young Man offered to play calming, soothing music, and soon she was sleeping as peacefully as ever. Young Man and True Love lived together for many years, and every night he would play peaceful music for her.
Sometimes, if Young Man was having a bad day, his playing would be fierce and intense; or other days, when he had a lot on his mind, thoughtful and slower. One day, Young Man died an untimely death. He met Creator up in the heavens. Young Man wept because they could no longer be together. True Love wept because she missed him dearly. The sleepless nights returned, and True Love was often distressed. Young Man wished to play some pleasant music for her, to ease her pain, but he could not reach out to her. Even if he played his music as loud as he could, it was too far away to reach her ears. Young Man went to Creator and told of his problem. Creator took pity, gathered some water from the river and formed a cloud. Young Man took it and placed the cloud in the sky over True Love’s village. He began tap-taptapping the cloud and played it like different keys on a piano. With each note, a drop of water would fall on the village. The sound of thousands of different notes created the most beautiful music anyone had ever heard, and True Love knew that it was her Young Man. Young Man would play his rain music for True Love when she was sleeping, and her world was peaceful.
6 HELENA NASCIMENTO
fishing SCOTT LU There’s plenty of fish in the sea, but i’m seasick. Someone catch me, please.
SAVE THE EARTH BECKY VON SHWERIN I had a dream when I looked to the sky I would see the white clouds float lazily by But instead all I see is smoke and fog Which is produced by factories that burn plastic and logs
What once used to be filled with beauty and life Is now a world filled with disease and strife We say we’re trying to avoid a catastrophe But continue to throw plastic into the sea And when we say we are doing the most We still have to look to the cosmos
To find another home where we’ll live They don’t realize that we just have to give Give more love to our planet called “home” Pay attention to it instead of our phones We read about nature every day The world that we are so desperately trying to save
We continue to do nothing but stand idly by While we watch our planet turning to die So get out of your seat and take a stand To save the sea, the air, and the land Save the earth that we call our home And then you can go check your phone
i’m hurting right now i’ll survive, and you’ll be there i’m grateful for that SCOTT LU
routine SCOTT LU
is met with great resistance
i can only try
just go ANDRE BOURGEOIS
if you only do one thing go see the world what heartbreak to die having only seen life within the walls you built yourself
15 ZHIJUN XU
The Macabre Issue
Due: October 10 2019 Key words: darkness supernatural disturbing decrepit grim strange firstname.lastname@example.org
Living ZHIJUN XU
Life, is not meant to be shaped Beings, are not meant to be moulded Our souls, should not embody your wants Yet, freedom and thoughts remain stolen There are so many walls and prison bars, And never can we travel far Six thousand, three hundred and seventy-one kilometers to call our home Yet we perish without living in it... at all.
17 SIDNEY MACDONALD
haunt me SCOTT LU
The world may end in a few years, and I’m thinking about a girl. Well, not exactly. Technically, we have 11 years left to save humanity from the irreversible damage centuries of man-made climate change will bring. If we don’t act within this time, there will be mass chaos. Famine and drought will become common. Entire populations will lose their homes and be displaced. Poverty will become even more excessive and rampant than it already is under capitalism. Billions of people will suffer. They had no choice. Because of the excess of human greed. Because the rich are short-sighted and selfish. Because when disaster strikes, they’ll be the least affected. Inherent evil. No generation knows this more than us, the present: we’ll be suffering through it. While our predecessors become accustomed to drinking their meals, our children and grandchildren will feel the damage they’ve done. It’s pretty easy to feel like we’re fucked, like the damage has already been done. No matter what I do, I can still picture my grandchildren being boiled alive by the sea. At least, that’s how it feels. Of course, we still have a chance. 11 years can feel pretty damn long. Plenty of people have realized we need to do more than just vote and share Facebook posts to actually change anything. Seeing climate strikes around the world led by our generation gives me hope. Sometimes, something doesn’t seem possible until it’s been done. Humans can be pretty reactionary creatures. The world may end in a few years, and I’m thinking about a girl. Fuck.
D. O. TAYLOR
Gardening RACHEL PANICO Isn’t it ironic? That we pick flowers because they’re pretty and smell nice, but once we do, they start to wilt? Some of us are too controlling, planting gardens - cute little blossoms all in rows. They don’t grow? We replace them. If one dies, we have back-ups. How aesthetically pleasing. Some of us like to have options, so they pick a whole bouquet, and pit flowers against each other, vying for attention. We smell one and it’ll blush, then another and the first flushes with jealousy. Just eye candy
to you. Some choose to admire from afar to cause less pain, to let them grow on their own. Some pick anyway, thinking they can love and nurture. Seal their fate. Flowers are simultaneously loved and rejected by all because of this thing called “taste.” I prefer colorful gerberas, some desire the classic red rose. You may love the subtle scent of white lilies or adore wallflowers like forget me nots. Don’t get me started on the neglected weeds. Flowers today are modified through GMOs, to make stems skinnier, leaves softer, petals brighter, scent more alluring. Thorns must always be trimmed. No one likes a flower with attitude. Flowers don’t need personalities or opinions. Just sit and look pretty, please. Flowers are strong and resilient. They have power to grow through cracks in concrete. Flowers aren’t meant for cultivation. You can’t harvest a flourishing wildflower. You don’t give enough water. You’re not sunshine. Your soil isn’t rich enough. When you’re holding that wilted, dead flower in your hand, remember you picked it.
I’m amazing. CAMILLE DEHGHAN
There’s a special place in hell for people who litter. One filled with their own filth. The world is ending because of them. I mean, there was that one time I couldn’t find a garbage can, so I sort of let my Kleenex flutter out of my hand and into the wind, but that doesn’t count. I ran by some trash on the road. I thought about picking it up, but no one else had and I didn’t see why the responsibility should be mine. I had already hit my rhythm. I wasn’t going to abruptly stop my run to pick up a soggy chip bag and carry it with me until I found the proper place to toss it. That would just weigh me down. I personally didn’t litter, so I absolved myself of the burden of ruining a perfectly good run. I am a good person. I am not the problem. So, all of you can shut up.
Pianists with Broken Fingers STEPHANIE SILVA
The neon lights scream meaninglessly into the night air. A little girl wails as she’s dragged toward a roller coaster. She manages to free her wrist from her brother’s buttery popcorn-fingers and runs away. An old man, a young woman and a little boy use water guns to shoot down animal-shaped targets. The boy laughs the hardest when the cardboard animals fall limply to the table. His small fingers turn purple as he pushes the trigger as hard as he can. When a man gets to the front of a long bathroom line, he tosses his mostly uneaten ice cream cone onto the ground. The remains of the cherry ice cream drip down his fingers and stain the underside of his nails a bloody red. Above everything, a claw ride’s long, metallic hands grasp greedily for the stars. I push people out of my way as I move toward the empty dock at the far end of the pier. The squeals of sugar-hyped children and the pulsating buzz of too many electric lights, the whizzing of the tilt-a-whirl and the screech of metal on metal all fade away. I swing my feet over the edge of the quiet dock and sit there, staring out into the darkness. The gently lapping waves only whisper their stories tonight. The moon listens in rapture, quivering slightly on the rippling surface of the sea. I wish I knew their secrets; mine are so ugly. I hide my scabbed and scraped-raw knuckles beneath my knees and lean closer to the water. I notice that there are also stars reflected on the surface. The sea is a cosmos spread out before me and the only planet not reflected in this second universe is earth. I dive in. The empty blackness is frightening at first. I’m blind and powerless in this silent, alien world. My heart begins to pound and I thrash my arms uselessly and I scream soundlessly and then, suddenly, something calls out to me.
A low, reverberating note echoes through the emptiness and my heart shivers. I can’t find the source. It seems to come from all around me. Another note rises to meet the first and I realize that neither one was ever meant for me. The two voices blend together in harmonious song. I can’t understand the lyrics, but nothing that beautiful could mean hate. It’s only when the otherworldly music ends that I understand what it was. The whales’ song reminds me that I am not in an alien world. I am in the sea and the sea has told me the secret that we’re too loud to hear. Somehow, Earth’s largest animals have only ever used their immense power to survive and to sing together from across the abyss. What stupid creatures. Those fish will never be like us. They will never learn how to send out jpegs and mpegs and pixelated distractions. Who cares if this noise never satisfies us? We won the evolutionary lottery. Our hands build empires. Our fingers pull the strings of the universe. Middle fingers, trigger fingers, opposable thumbs. What can whales do with those fins of theirs? What can they create? I push through the surface of the star-speckled water, and the first things I see are my angry red knuckles, flickering in the shrill carnival lights. If we had fins instead of hands, would I know how to love?
HOME I’m feeling overwhelmed, not sure where to go or how to get there. I feel this weight on my chest pushing down like a hundred stones - pushing me deeper, deeper until…well, until I take my last breath. I don’t want be here anymore, not when I’m so lost and alone - not when I know of a place where I can go. I’m running as fast as my legs can take me, faster - pushing myself past the breaking point. Wait. I slowed my pace. I don’t need to be running so fast. It’s not like it’s going anywhere, is it? No, it’s not because it will always be there. I’m taking it one step at a time until I smell that familiar sent. The first deep breath I’ve taken in weeks because I know it’s safe to do so. When that air fills my lungs, I feel as if a warm blanket has cascaded over my body. I know exactly where I am because I never feel this way except when I’m here. I’m finally home. DESIREE STREEF
32 DESIREE STREEF
The Evil Forest
Preye T. A.
It’s not an easy life you were born into. For the things you want, You may have to go through the evil forest. So, listen to me carefully. You might be tempted to stop along the way And you could survive there But only if you die a little inside every day, As the forest finds ways to Give you less than you deserve. You see, the rules were not made to help your kind. The same soil that birthed And nurtured your soul Will blame you for the sins of men against your body. So, make friends, allies, For the forest gives nothing And forgives nothing. It punishes flowers whose petals Grow without permission. You cannot make that place your home. So be consistent in your pursuit And remember that you deserve the things you seek. Even when it’s hard, and you’re consumed with sadness, Even when you fail, Even when you sit on the forest floor, crying in the rain, Create the life you want. The path you make will enable those coming after you. See, you may very well change the game forever. For this very reason, The forest thinks you are evil, too.
A place of
TRANSPARENCY DARKNESS DOUBT VULNERABILITY MASS SABOTAGE OMINOUS UNFOCUSED SPINNING ANXIOUS EXHAUSTED HELP D.O. TAYLOR & CAMILLE DEHGHAN
CAMILLE DEHGHAN The door is locked. The windows are closed. The shutters are sealed. I’m all alone. But I can see outside. I can hear the waves. I can feel the breeze. I’ll be okay.
For our Planet Earth issue we asked contributors to capture both the beauty and the ugliness of our Planet Earth. Flipping through this col...
Published on Aug 13, 2019
For our Planet Earth issue we asked contributors to capture both the beauty and the ugliness of our Planet Earth. Flipping through this col...