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Elysium 2009 Vol. VIII






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MARROW MIRROR

Artist Credits and Staff Page

6

Zorba and Apollo // John Digiacomo

10

Leftover // Catherine Zaw

12

Perfume of the Streets // Valerie Dorer

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Dancing with Memories // Leah Singer

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To Read before You Die // Amanda Hudson

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He Was Told // Leah Singer

20

Lait // Daniella Carucci

22

Open Window // Kimberly Berkley

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The Archeologist // Danielle Wierenga

26

Denial: This Poem Is Not about Sex // Victoria Melendez

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Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll Understand When Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Older // Karla Cobreiro

30

Reflection // Amanda Nichols

32

Of Butterfly Blues // Anna Mebel

36

Dedication // Amanda Hudson

38

Perception // Barbara Uchdorf

40

Wither // Victoria Melendez

42

Blue Nails // Anna Mebel

44

Somewhere To Nowhere // Adriyan Rotati

46

Scholastics Art Awards

48

Patient(s) // Marilyn Horta

50

1-800 Damage Control // Nafeesa Bhanji

52

Unfinished Masterpiece // Catherine Zaw

54

Bargaining // Kimberly Berkeley

56

A Dip in the Mud // Nafeesa Bhanji

58

Scott McKinley

60

Legacy // Marilyn Horta

62


Architecture // Jorge Buitrago & Mitra Hosseini Transient Delight for String Quartet // Jiwen Lei

92 94

MORE

66 68 70 72 74 76 78 80 82 84 88

MORROW

January 20, 2009 // Mitra Hosseini A History // Barbara Uchdorf Tangerine Twilight // Amanda Nichols You Made Me Write Bad Poetry // Daniella Carucci Bystander Effect // Catherine Zaw Black History Month // Victoria Melendez Coincidental Fate // Sonul Rao Strange Ways // Michael Akinlabi Feed Me // Daniella Carucci Bagboy // Marilyn Horta Comic: Sourtongue / / Andrea Espinosa

Table of

Contents


artist credits Cover Table of Contents, Folios, and Inserts by Audrey Gonzalez pg. 11 pg. 13 pg. 15 pg. 17 pg. 19 pg. 20 pg. 22 pg. 25 pg. 27 pg. 29

Blinded Alice in Wonderland Wave Graphics//Dancing Pyre of Knowledge Bestial Ramifications Blargh History of Dresses Of Suburbia The Violinist

Audrey Gonzalez Tatiana Jackson Raye Ng Noel Kassewitz Raquel Kidd Noel Kassewitz Tatiana Jackson Adabel Maldanado Keilani Rodriquez Raquel Kidd

artist credits pg. 67 pg. 69 pg. 71 pg. 73 pg. 75 pg. 77 pg. 79 pg. 80 pg. 82 pg. 86 pg. 88 pg. 92 pg. 93 pg. 94 pg. 95

6

Inaugural Parade Film 2 Face Joe Father Time Bored and Sick Cold Morning I Am Me Leaving My Mark Break Gluttony Vegetables Sourtongue Artist Dwelling The Sky in Front Transient Delight pg. 1 Transient Delight pg. 2

pg. 31 pg. 32 pg. 37 pg. 39 pg. 41 pg. 42 pg. 44 pg. 47 pg. 51 pg. 52 pg. 55 pg. 56 pg. 58 pg. 60 pg. 61 pg. 62 pg. 66

&

Mitra Hosseini Danielle Garone Danielle Garone Cecelia Cabrera Keilani Rodriguez Ronel Constantine Isabel Conoepan Eduardo Moreno Tatiana Jackson Audrey Gonzalez Andrea Espinosa Jorge L. Buitrago Mitra Hosseini Jiwen Lee Jiwen Lee

The Escape Ronel Constantin Vanity Shot Jenny Cifuentes Aphasia Tatiana Jackson Little Lighthouse Ana Perez On the Back of my Mind Audrey Gonzalez With the Passage of Time Noel Kassewitz Some Lucky Kid Raquel Kidd Ink Mountain Cecilia Cabrera Lock Abstractions Cecilia Cabrera Shattering Symbols Maria Arteaga Anorexia Nervosa Tatiana Jackson Charcoal Skeleton Cecilia Cabrera Survive Raye Ng P.D. Lee at Jasper Scott McKinley Burning at Diego Flats Scott McKinley Graphic/ Legacy Raquel Kidd Obama Button Schuyler Polk

elysium staff

Kim Berkley Jorge Buitrago Cecilia Cabrera Daniella Carucci Michael Cisneros Valerie Dorer Audrey Gonzalez Mitra Hosseini Amanda Hudson Tatiana Jackson Ayodele Jolibois Deanna Kalil

Noel Kassewitz Raquel Kidd Emma King Elliot Levy David Li Anna Mebel Amanda Nichols Adriyan Rotati Jolie Shapiro Emma Singer Steven Urueta Danielle Wierenga Matthew Westland


MARROW


ZORBA AND APOLLO MARROW

The creator and The thinker The creator: Whose hands have intimated crafted structured and molded Art in the likeness of Man The thinker: Whose hands have scanned searched perused and crafted words As he postulated the conditions of Man And yet they are joined by fate: In having taken such care such time and such prudence Towards such a passion They have forged manacles of the mind That bind them to icy chisel and frigid quill For neither painting nor book statue nor manuscript sketch nor essay Can wrap the cold hands of their creators And warm them like the ardor of fellow man

o n 10

iGia o o


Audrey Gonzalez, Blinded, Oil on Canvas.

11


Leftover

MARROW

Neglected piece of delight Still wrapped in the protective foil Plainly in view, tempting to the woman Who is contemplating—balancing the worth Of the lusciousness

But that other action Would let her elope With a sugary high echoing Through her mind, fake shot at Bravery to step outside the law

Chocolate half undressed Coaxing for more creamy skin to reveal Unobstructed view of satisfaction And wet growing anticipation In the captured prisoner’s mouth

Reluctance wins And the last bit of silver shield Is tossed away The poison of diet tucked Disappeared between lips curved wide—

Narcissistic bit of candy Stealing all the attention of The restrained woman who is About to break her self-set rules Her fingers twitching because they know

Temporarily—smile fading as the bliss Melts out, dragging the victim Back to the cold, hard earth and despair Where her stomach pushes Past the limit of her jeans tight embrace

One movement could hide the treat And tear her eyes—divert her life— Off the persuading voice calling And reminding her what tastes Could tickle the tongue’s pleasure

Still whining for more

Catherine Zaw

12


Tatiana Jackson, Alice in Wonderland Syndrome, Acrylic and Installation.

13


Perfume of the streets MARROW 14

In the southern hemisphere, in the country of Brazil, in the state of Amazonas, I collected my first memories. The city was Manaus, a colonial relic of unlikely and now faded prosperity. The neighborhood was “Jardin Europa.” The street I can’t remember. At six, my dead-end street seemed a private playground where I spent my early childhood. A Street, a lane, a way, a boulevard, a court, a road, an avenue, a circle, a place, a terrace, a drive. One whose name I don’t recall and need not know. I know its scents, its odors, its faces and sounds and emotions. It is the avenue beside which I sat with my brother on rainy afternoons, camouflaged by our untrimmed hibiscus bushes. Digging into flooded soil we attempted to form mud balls from what felt like pancake batter that had yet to be mixed. After careful inspection, a verdict was rendered on whether the soggy mixture was sufficiently spherical. If the creation was ruled adequate, we quickly hurled it in the other’s direction, hoping the sloppy lump would make it into the air without more than half of its contents sliding through our fingers and past our wrists. Elbow deep in mud we would giggle at the sound of our mother’s voice calling our names. As the seconds passed the giggling rose to hysteria and our swamp-like battleground was revealed.

It is the terrace down which I marched with my mom, dad, and brother in tow, following the aroma of grilled Picanha and fresh cut mangoes to Tio Claudio’s house for his weekly Churrasco. Dexter and I would burst through the gate, race to the pool and heave ourselves in, joining our laughing and screaming friends. The music played on those nights was soulful and always accompanied by the unending hum of adult conversation. The exchange on those nights was not, however, of the reserved, polite sort that might take place in an office break room. It was apparent, even to us at the tender age of six, by the high pitched shrieks and booming guffaws of sporadic laughter that the glasses scattered around us held something slightly more potent than the water we were encouraged to drink. It is the drive that leads to Amacom, the electronics store owned by my mother and father, where my brother and I would mount the wealth of cardboard boxes in the storage room, uninhibited by whatever speaker set or television we may have had to trample in our wobbly race towards the peak of this geometric Everest. This is the same angular wonderland I so greatly resented on weeknights at eight o’ clock, when my seemingly unending struggle against sleep would begin. I anxiously awaited the “click” of my rotating


Raye Ng, Wave, Digital Photography.

doorknob signaling the ultimate arrival of my evertardy parents. The drive to the giant yellow shopping center that held our packaged playground was less mystifying. Rarely were we allowed to roll down the window, for instantly the stifling heat penetrated our airconditioned haven. The heat was a perpetually present lover mixed with the poignant and highly chemical aroma of gasoline that the locals called “cheiro da rua” or “perfume of the streets.” Now both sweating and coughing, we were accosted by an overwhelming number of traffic vendors; locals whose originally mahogany toned skin looked now, after years of pacing the streets under the searing warmth of the sun, almost violet. Impervious to the blistering heat they would beam gap-toothed smiles in our direction and offer

anything between once cold bottles of water, shabby stuffed animals, and designer imitation watches which were of course, “Pure silver, the real thing!” This exceptional place seemed unremarkable to me then. Didn’t every child chase hummingbirds and fish for piranha? My priorities were games in the pool, coconuts on the beach, and picnics on the Amazon River. Suffering never crossed my mind, because we were comfortable. But, it was everywhere in this impoverished river town.

Valerie Dorer

15


MARROW

Dancing The old man cautiously hobbled across the deserted room. It was as dark as the ocean at midnight, but his memory lit the way. The creaking of the swollen floorboards told him that the rich, red carpeting had long ago been stripped away. He brushed aside a cloud-like wisp of silvery hair

16

with

from his eyes, remembering when his hair had been thick and black. What he could not push away was the feeling that he was slowly disintegrating, like a sand castle at high tide. He walked to the end of the room and stared out of the dusty window overlooking the city. The view was the same but his eyesight failed. him. As he breathed


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To Read Before You Die

MARROW 18

Her rigid inability to discuss a matter so lighthearted had frightened her, and her face was now buried in his chest. It was hard and warm, a living anchor. What books do you know you have to read before you die? She kept it there longer than was comfortable for either of them. There was something unnatural and violating in what she was being asked to do, though the question had been no more than a casual invitation to conversation. She wriggled under the sheets and offered clipped phrases into the hollow of his chest as she tried to explain what she herself did not quite understand. She did not want to answer. Indignant with her sudden state of vulnerability and angry with him for being its cause, she lay exposed, feeling childish. There were books she wanted to read with a great deal of eagerness, but no books she had placed on a pedestal as he now suggested. She saw reading as the embodiment of intellect: the source of all knowledge and culture, the heights of human achievement. It was a reverence she had cultivated as a child and had not been able to shake off since. She knew her love of literature gave her nothing that was not given to anyone with a singular passion, but she felt as though it should. This was her habit, her joy, the string whose ropy bow tied her to reality; as a gambler has his dice and a painter has his brush, so she, a reader, had her books. She knew that to name books that she absolutely must read before she died would ruin her passion, turning it from a thing of passion to a thing of obligation; but she suspected that it could do worse even than that.

Her reason for life was rooted in her own sense of worth, which was informed, in turn, by her pride. This is the case for many humans, fallible and in need of flattery, but she was willing to admit it: she needed her pride, and it so happened that its greatest sources were in being loved and feeling intelligent. Without one, she figured, she would always have the other to catch her. But what if she lived and died without ever being ultimately and honestly loved? Even if she thought she was in this fortunate position, how could she truly know? There was a dense vagueness to love that she could not stand. No matter how in love she felt she was, there was never a moment when she could not imagine a love more enrapturing, more fantastic, more simple and enduring. Does the capacity to imagine a thing make it possible? Though she moved through the world a figure strong and proud, her heart was as soft a piece of meat as any, and it tore at its roots in throbbing curiosity to think of the problem of love. Perhaps a gypsy should find the answers for her in the lines of her hands, or maybe she could make it out in the tapping code of his muffled heart as it beat now in her ear. She pressed her head closer, and did not answer. But there was no gypsy, and no cordial rhythm to inform her. Should she live and die without the certainty of love, she would need intellect more than ever to sustain her confidence in life and soften its travails and, knowing with rather too much certainty that she possessed no real genius


Raquel Kidd, Pyre of Knowledge, Oil.

of her own, this could only be had by associating her own mild intelligence with the genius of others. She would wear pages like robes of redemption and play the part of the biting cynic: respected yet resented, admirable but troubling. If she would not be loved, she would have to be above love. She did not want to answer, because if she should set out for herself any number of books which she must read before she died, it would mark the end of what sustained her. Having accomplished the meager goal and having fulfilled the potential she herself determined she had, her limits would have been reached, so that reading anything after those books would be empty, void of meaning and nourishment. The creation of a new list would be out of the question. To read all but one of the books would not save her either: she knew loose ends could not stave off mortality, and that it would only leave her feeling unfulfilled and anxious for far too long a time. So inevitably, if she named the books she must read before she died, she would have no choice but to follow through, and by following through, reading would be ruined for her. The conciliatory lifestyle of a cynic would no longer be possible either, as someone with such limited aspirations could not fill the roleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s spacious bitter shoes. Keeping her face pressed on his chest she shook her head, untangling their legs to move away. She did not want to answer. There would be nothing to look forward to except the love she did not think would come.

Amanda Hudson

19


MARROW Noel Kassewitz, Bestial Ramifications, Charcoal. 20


He Was Told He He He He He He He He He He He He

was was was was was was was was was was was was

told by his parents he was adopted told by his father she had loved him told by the agency the orphanageâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s name and address told by the taxi driver thirty-two dollars told by the nuns her name and number told by the voice on the phone sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be home later told by the graffiti-covered street sign it was the correct place to wait told by the screeching of tires she was speeding and was late told by their similar features that she was the one told by the slur of her words the reasons for what she had done told by her broken eyes and heart that he was not her son told by his falling tears he should not have come

Leah Singer

21


Lait Her screams sounded anything but human. It was like a band of wolves crying to the moon, each howl lost and sorrowfully afraid. Except, she wasn’t astray or terrified. She was angry. Her rage was misplaced with the gnashing of teeth, but shaking with the frustrations of her adolescence. How cliché. She cried so hard her jaw shook, rattled, and quaked. The resonance of her teeth chattering paled in comparison to the guttural reverberations being emitted so freely into the air. An entombed monster of a creature wouldn’t have thrashed so liberally against his ball and chain. How audacious. Her oral cavity escalated to the size of approximately one third of her face, with so collect a sound; the screams, the bitter ranting of broken dreams! It was America’s blares for a Democratic president, an infant for its mother’s lactation, and the world for stillness. Her tonsils ached severely, but she never thought so clearly. Why is she whispering? There was no rationale for her to be so disconnected. Nonetheless, her temple furrowed, eyes narrowed, and the balls in her cheeks were

never so apparent. The yells were so resounding, the tears dissipated on her face, shattered by noise. But this was not noise. Whispers are turning faint.This was the nightingale’s lost song. Temples did not splinter, but the echo reached the heavens. Just when you thought she stopped, there came another howl. Too refined for blubbering, she cried with form. The waters from the rivers fine, it was the sadness of the world being released. Daft girl, it was only spilt milk.

Daniella Carucci

23


The Open Window

MARROW 24

Finally, I thought to myself, finally I’m getting somewhere in this dreadful case! It won’t be long now till this thing is solved—for good. I clutched the letter in my gloved hand like an eager child clinging to a new toy, oblivious to the morbidity of it all. You might think it strange —disturbing, even—that someone could be so gleeful, so desperately overjoyed, over a letter that would, at best, hold all the gruesome details of an impending murder. But, if it followed the pattern of the previous messages I’d read, and was indeed written by the killer I’d been tracking so carefully, so dedicatedly, for the past month and a half (I shuddered to think otherwise!) I would have been happier still. But, before you deem me, Elizabeth Copperton, a madwoman, consider the following. The letter I then held in my hand, the letter which I hoped so fervently was written by a murderer, could have been the key to uncovering the true identity of said killer, and thus, could have ended the mystery once and for all. It was not through a morbid fascination with the creature that wrote the letter, but rather through a virtuous determination to put him behind bars that I had found that letter and therefore felt a small measure of triumph and hope rising in me—hope that this would at last be the one to lead me to the author of so much evil during the past few months. While tracking this abhorrent man, I had intercepted and discovered a small quantity of handwritten notes—about four in all—which had been people who were close to past victims, describing in detail how his prey would be killed the night before the murder would be uncovered. It was, then, my dearest wish that the letter I had just acquired would be another of the series, and would lead me to the victim—and her potential murderer—before the crime actually occurred. My hands trembled something awful as I lit the candle on my desk. Though the seal on the letter was plain, without any incriminating design to help identify its author, and the envelope was

blank save for the name of the person the letter was addressed to—my neighbor, Sara Finney, of all people!—I knew with a dreadful, yet thrilling certainty that it was from him. From hell. Gently, I broke the seal on the envelope and slid the letter out. Putting the envelope aside, I let my eyes rest for a moment on the still-folded note, imagining the message I would find waiting for me inside. I took a deep breath, gathered my wits (which I was sure I would need most of all on that night of nights), and opened the folded letter. I see they still think I am a doctor haha. I love to watch them when theyre looking for me in the streets, its so funny to kno how close and yet so far they are. I wonder, have you read about my latest jobs—I think I’m getting better don’t you? And the next ones going to be the best yet, I think. She’s a real pretty thing with curly blond hair and big blue eyes. I bet I can make her a nice red necklace to wear, haha Do you like red? I stopped and stared. Was he saying the victim was Sara herself? With a new sense of urgency, I continued reading. Now I know this may be hard for you but please don’t stop reading this when you get scared, I want you to read it all before the end. Again, I paused. Though it was a murderer’s letter, and therefore bound to be hair-raising and spine-tingling, this particular one was going somewhere I wasn’t sure I wanted to follow it to. The other letters, I thought, were not like this. You see I have your addres. Safely assume then that I will make good use of this infomation. I cleaned my knife last night and I can’t wait to get some fresh color on it. I might even send in a kidney or a ear to the police, another teaser to keep them on their toes. It’s time I got around to this. You know she’s been rather a nuisance lately. I think I’ve let her follow me long enough. Catch me if you can. I slammed the letter down on the desk at this point, frustrated and deflated. The sense of


Adabel Maldanado, History of the Dresses, Mixed Media.

triumph I had felt earlier was gone, no more than a ghost of a memory, and I was frightened and sad for the victim that was once again beyond my help despite the fact that I had received the letter before the killing. Sara had gone out some hours ago; even if she were the intended fatality, I had no idea where to look for her or when she would return. Chewing on my lip and blinking away tears, I raised my head to stare at my own reflection in my mirror. At this point, a very blunt, very startling, and very awful truth became clear to me as I gazed at myself in the glass. In my excitement over the letter, I had forgotten a few seemingly minor details about myself—details upon which my fate suddenly hinged. My hair was a deep golden color and fell in looping curls past my shoulders. My eyes were as blue as the sky. Next to the mirror sat a portrait of Sara and me out in the park a few summers ago. Sara had blond hair, too – but her eyes were a deep, dark brown. The killer’s description of his next victim echoed jarringly in my head. She’s a real pretty thing with curly blond hair and blue eyes. That letter wasn’t talking about Sara Finney. I lowered my gaze back to the letter, my frustrations replaced with a growing dread… and stared. The letter, which I had placed facedown on the desk, had something extra written on the back. My heart in my mouth, I shakily picked it up and moved it back into the firelight

of the flickering candle. The back of the note held only a single line, but that alone said more than I wanted to know. PS: Check your windows, Elizabeth. At first, I felt nothing, just a dull, numbing confusion, but when I read the words a second time, and understood their meaning at last, my blood ran cold, and my heart all but stopped. The letter fell from my hand, fluttering to the ground like a dying butterfly, taking my hopes with it. This can’t be happening, my heart whispered. This can’t be happening. Propelled by a force far greater than my own free will, I turned slowly towards my bedroom window. Though I had closed and locked it before leaving home earlier that day to retrieve the letter—that godawful letter!— it was now hanging wide open, the broken lock indicating a forced entry. My throat went dry. I clutched desperately at the edge of my desk, hunting for a glimpse of reason in a night now devoid of sanity. Something moved in the far corner of my room. I swallowed, my hands shaking now from terror rather than anticipation. Taking one last, deep breath, I turned and bolted for the door, stumbling in my blind panic. Even before I reached the door, I knew I would not make it. All I could think was, So close. I was so close! The next morning, the police found me in the hallway leading to my front door, my throat cut and my right ear sliced clean off. They searched my room for clues, but the letters I had worked so carefully to collect were gone. The only evidence of the killer that remained was the open window, swaying with a gentle creaking noise in the autumn breeze. I bet I can make her a nice red necklace to wear, haha Do you like red?

Kimberly Berkley

25


The Archaeologist

MARROW

The sound of brush on stone, And the feel of the hot sun On the back of his neck and On the blades of his shoulders Had left him angry. And the sweat falling from his brow, Onto his legs, Onto the stone, Onto the ground Left him dazed and searching. But in the heat of the day he saw fantastical things. On the horizon: The Sphinx, Stonehenge, Montezuma, The Burning Monk, The Great Wall, The Capitol, A car, a train, his wife. And common sense compels him, To look down at his work and try again, He frowns then breathes, Presses brush against rock, Feeling the urge to look again at that skyline. And when he does succumb, He instantly throws his head behind, And resumes that breath and frown, And says, â&#x20AC;&#x153;What a fool am I.â&#x20AC;?

Danielle Wierenga

26


Keilani Rodriguez, Of Suburbia, Photography.

27


DENIAL: THIS POEM IS NOT ABOUT SEX MARROW

Why can’t I fix you? I try and I try but you’re wrong again. The sound is off. The string low, The other flat. My fingers dance across your body, Holding you down to find the right notes, But you don’t respond as I hoped. And so I say you’re wrong again. Of course, it cannot be me. I’m going by the book. I’m doing this right. I chant the spell, The incantation Flawlessly, My wand moves Gracefully, With fluidity, But no rabbit comes from the hat.

It cannot be me. I who studied the arts, The sciences, The ways of the unknown. I who have learned all there is to know. It cannot be me! And yet, No matter how I strum the chords, And though I say the words just right, You do not respond Soundlessly, And my hat Remains Empty.

Victoria Melendez

28


Raquel Kidd,Violinist, Graphite.

29


You’ll Understand When You’re Older MARROW

The air on the coast just outside Havana was still and smelled of sea and diesel, but the ocean was far from calm and steady. It was the fourth time that my twin sister and I accompanied my mother to a desolate location in the middle of the night. The long wait, unfavorable maritime conditions, and pending sunrise were causing the crowd’s hope to crumble one more time, until someone noticed a small dim light rocking back and forth in the distance, gradually growing more and more visible as it got closer to shore. The twenty or so who had been waiting on the shoreline gathered their few belongings and began to walk out into the ocean to meet the undersized boat. In the

passengers’ eyes, the small vessel seemed more like a luxury liner. Many had already desperately taken the same venture in a much less promising craft, a scanty raft made only of wood, tires, and rope. We were among the last to reach the vessel: my mother, my sister and myself, and my grandparents. In a matter of seconds, the boat would begin to pull away from the shore, taking her from the island to Miami where she’d reunite with her husband. My mother left her career as a doctor along with the houses in which she had grown up. She left behind her language and everything she had known. Now she was in the hands of fate and the Atlantic Ocean.

Karla Cobreiro

30


Ronel Constantin, The Escape, Acrylic Painting.

31


Reflection

I stare at her. Crooked window frames, wry smiles favor my right â&#x20AC;&#x201C; her left, smooth porcelain I might touch, but only feel cool sand, melted and dried. I stare at her. A veneer, gilded and fake, sparkling brightly and beautifully, a deception. Might I remove her? Allow ocean of day, the ocean of night rinse her away and no longer hide what sight cannot reveal?

Amanda Nichols

32

Jenny Cifuentes, Vanity Shot, Digital Photography.

MARROW

I stare at her. Shadows above her eyes, not under them; bright half heart and crescent moon painted magenta; night cascading past her shoulders, down her back; sight perfect, large windows with clean glass.


MIRROR


MIRROR

Todd was a boy who collected butterflies, filled his notebooks with careful sketches. He liked a girl. A slight, blond one that was a bit too quiet, but had gray eyes and smiled like a purring cat. They had clandestine meetings on the Sunday grass. Leaning on a tree trunk Claire would tell him of Renoir and Nabokov. He would listen, drawing butterflies on her wrists. The butterfly names were small enchantments she whispered in her sleep, “Junonia villinda, papillio homerus, paranssius phoebus…” When they argued, it was about God. Claire found her to be a silly, benign creature: one that watched over the world like a lazy Buddha. Todd shook his head, waved his hands, and cried, “Science!” She would shush him, gesturing to a butterfly on her wrist, “Only a god would come up with this shade of blue.”

Anna Mebel

36


Of Butterfly Blues “When they argued, it was about God.”

Tatiana Jackson, Aphasia, Acrylic. 37


Dedication

MIRROR 38

Across the room, calls tore in rasps over the thick smell of seeds and sticky-sweet fruits which, already hard and dried, now sat listless and uneaten as their last stores of moisture drifted out of the tough skins. The floor of the cage was covered in newsprint from which the smell spilled; it had been laid in the cage with care some time ago, fresh and grey-white with newness. Now it was an ornate lace of seed shells and fruit peels and countless flowers formed by punctures in the yellowed paper. “I love you, I love you,” it called, fledging its advances with a bright flutter of wings. The old man across the room made no response, choosing instead to continue dabbing paint with incredible care onto the canvas perched before him. His skin looked like paper in the sun, the marks on his arms like coffee spills and spots of ink, and while he painted he frowned so that his brow was held tight and low over his eyes and his lower jaw craned past his upper, as if his face were chasing his line of sight in the eagerness of concentration. “I love you, I love you,” the parrot insisted, beating the air, “I love you! Pretty boy!”

The old man’s frown shifted in frustration, and turning back to face the bird he shouted, “Shut up,” stood, and again, “Shut up! Shut up, shut up, you ugly bird!” The parrot turned on its rough perch, its tail scraping the copper of the cage’s bars. Satisfied with this, the old man returned to his seat. On the canvas there was a painting of the sea. The bird watched the old man hunch with intensity over the painting, and wondered why. The flat, ugly thing did not love him, it did not tell him so. It said nothing while the parrot sung, keeping him company as the old woman who always wore the shawl had said: “Now, you take care of him when I’m gone. Will you do that, pretty boy?” The parrot liked the old woman and her natty shawl, its shoulders pulled and discolored from years of the parrot perching there as she went about her work. The old woman had been gone for a long time now, and the parrot wanted her back. “I love you, I love you,” it called, but the woman did not come. “I love you,” it cried, day and night, but the old woman stayed out in the hallway and the old man did not let the parrot

onto his own shoulders to go about the woman’s work. He bent perpetually forward in his chair, squinting and frowning at the sea which he created and loved, but which could never love him back. The old man paused and held the long, thin brush away from him. He rose, took a few steps beyond the chair and turned to stare at the sea from afar. He cocked his head and let his arms hang limp at his sides. The parrot wondered why the old man had to look at it this way. He caught a pair of bars in his beak and curled his roughribbed talons around another, clinging sideways on the cage to see what the old man saw. There was only the sea, and he returned to his perch in a commotion of stiff plumage. He hoped the old man would look at the sea and be happy, set down the brush, walk to the door and call down the hall, “I’ve finished!” so that the old woman would come back. She would hurry into the room from the hall and tug at her shawl, smiling as she and he stared at the canvas, and they would kiss and tell each other, “I love you,” after they’d both looked at it long enough. But the old man was not


Ana Perez, Little Lighthouse, Photography. happy with his sea, and he returned to bend before the easel. The frown set itself on his face once again, and his brow hung low as he painted and thought of his son, at whose house the picture of the sea he was now painting had been taken. It was a large house, and his son had paid for all of it himself: he was a successful businessman, as the old man had never been. He wanted the old man to move away to a home with other old men who had no wives and no children nearby, “so you can be where you’re taken care of.” The old man’s successful son had stayed away from the old man’s home for many years now, staying instead at his large home

with his young wife and his own son for holidays, an arrangement of which they both approved. The old man was concentrating on the white heads of foam that lay on the water where waves had broken, sea ghosts. The parrot scratched something against the bars, sending waves of bright pings to catch the old man’s attention, though it refused now to be caught. A piano stood next to the easel, pushed up against the wall and looking soft under a thick layer of dust; the rest of the house also rested softly under dust which had settled because the old woman was not there to wipe it away or send it back into the air with a quick, sure

motion of her wrist. “I love you, I love you.” The old man’s wrists had trembled when he tried to go about her work, and when the trembling had finally spread over him so that his body bent and shook with sobs, he decided that the piano and the lamps and the house’s many quiet rooms looked better soft and dusty anyway, and that he had his own work to do. He squinted past his long, narrow nose as today he laid down the whitecaps. Tomorrow he would feed the parrot, clean its cage and work on the gulls. The day after that, the rocks that stood above the water; the following day, those on shore; then after that and after again for many days, the sea would hold him in its silent gaze and it would in turn be held by his own until the painting was complete. Then he would set down his paintbrush, clap his hands and say to the cruel and taunting parrot, “I’m finished!” because the old woman would have had it so.

Amanda Hudson

39


Perception MIRROR

I had seen this one before. Him over me, Our bodies Entwined Like trees with brittle branches. Only the earth could hold us then. Her face looked sullen, apologetic Almost, But she still had the horns and Never again Could I stand To smile at them. They waited there, Looking down Like angels doing Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s work, Waiting for reaction. They waited and I stood. How similar we both looked. And yet how different When in the end I was alone And she With child to bear, And me With none but men to coax me Into their traps.

Barbara Uchdorf

40


Audrey Gonzalez, On the Back of My Mind, graphite.

41


MIRROR Noel Kassewitz, With the Passage of Time, Acrylic and alkyd oils.

42


Wither It’s cold outside, And as I walk past the sugar cane and reeds I see how they have withered. Withered in the path that the wind blows, Dying in someone else’s direction. But then I see one fixed against the wind, One that died strong. And so I think of you, And how you withered. Slowly becoming someone I did not know, A being I could no longer understand, A being I felt so much for, But was probably incapable of feeling for me. And I remember how you fought, Refusing to follow any path other than your own. No matter where it led. And as the shadows pass and time flies by I think of all the things you’ll never see, And all the things you’ll never know, But then the light passes through the trees, And the sun kisses my cheek just as you did before, And I remember. I remember your life, Your love, And all that you taught me, While withering in your own direction. direction.

Victoria Melendez 43


MIRROR Raquel Kidd, Some Lucky Kid, Mixed Media. 44


Blue Nails In school, she painted her nails blue and doodled Salvador Dali in her math notebook, wishing that drifting eyeballs and melting clocks would replace derivatives. After school she wished to dress up her obsessions in neat verse and snappy meterher influences were set: Eliot, Yeats, never Austen, never pink-skirted waltzes.

Instead, she decided to twist her syntax into jazz to make furniture come alive, to make her sonics spit and cackle like a witches cauldron;

but most earnestly, she swore to never taint her nails a proper peach.

Anna Mebel

45


Somewhere to nowhere M RROR

At A g e 1 8

Where once mountains rose To’ards valleys stretched To skies—(too plain!) . . . Now rests my pen-dripped land, Seeping, leaking thought: Ink bled in vain. Where once words played On dreams that starred All frets but death, Now lies us—sundered stars By hope’s sweet madness, A paradise once met.

Where all but at once, Your story stops, But life moves still, Here fades this writer’s gaze— Now time dyes twilight, And I fulfill.

Adriyan Rotati 46


Cecilia Cabrera, Ink Mountain, Ink. 47


1

2 5


4

3 6

Scholastic Art Awards 1. 2. 3.

4. 5.

6.

Laura Berrios, Self Portrait, Graphite, Silver Key in Drawing. Victoria Diaz, Skulls, Pencil and Chalk, Gold Key in Drawing. Raquel Kidd, Try it, You Might Like It, Colored Pencil, Gold Key Portfolio Finalist. Matthew Alvarez, Glasses, Oil on Canvas, Gold Key in Painting. Audrey Gonzalez, Choke, Ink, watercolor, and Gouache on Tagboard Gold Key Portfolio Finalist. Helen Vogle, Road Trip to Nowhere, enamel on cardboard, Gold Key in Painting.

49


Patient(s)

M RROR

I. Confession

III. Delusion

Wake up early today, Pour the syrup and begin. Ever heard of love triangles? I smack my lips and stick, stick, stick. Well, I’m an infatuation polygon, I say.

Salt on black paper quakes in a frame, And this is what they call Entertainment? Funny, I think. What a swell night – The streetlights shine bright.

It’s you, me, and another million Sleeping in a bed for two.

They flower up against buildings Under the dark luscious sky, A virus growing Like a baby inside me.

II. Recession

IV. Conclusion

Your tongue curls out morphemes Of an irreverent pattern, With a writhing finger you try and coax me Into the passenger’s seat, We pass the local strip joint, Yet your eye does not wander It remains eternally fixed, As if locks were clipped, And engraved with my Name.

Emma Bates hates Waking in the morning Injections and drips Her gums itch At odd hours of the day

Static hisses and pops as you change stations. From Class to Jazz to News to Blues A string of sounds piece sentences together Along the persistent zzz of turning knobs, They’ll speak for us instead. My favorite part of speech is the adjective. It describes; we hyperbolize and hit the asphalt. Talk forward, act backward. A fly’s eyes could match yours A face upturned and hazed in red There’s a sour taste lurking in my mind And that trepid sucking sound So – do you even know It?

She’d rather stay half-asleep, Horizontal in the backseat Swerving and shaking, indecisive She’s in here every day, Drowning in sea foam green It’s progressed, they say. Blame the tiles and long aisles, Or just a plain healthy self that ails From the counterfeit color on the wall She hears her dad argue with the men in white, Just have patience? Oh, I have plenty. It’s pulling feathers off an ostrich To see her smile from a tangle of tubes, So she writes her name inside her head forever And keeps these images at bay

Marilyn Horta 50


Cecilia Cabrera, Lock Abstractions, Acrylic.

51


1-800 Damage Control

M RROR Maria Arteaga, Shattering Symbols, Gelatin-silver Print.

Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an emergency on line 89 Stop. Break. Shake. Shatter My world and break it to pieces Delicate tasks made so simple in your hands Dear crafty creature of tricks and knavery, Share your secrets.

52


Folly summons And on behalf of my opposite half, it summons laughs Should I settle, should I sink into the sophomoric state of finks Should I fool you? Should I slip the banana peel down under your feet Or pelt you with snowballs Better yet, I’ll cut holes through your clothes and smear glue all over your seat; You would have to crawl And I could tie your hands behind your back: And I want you to recall. This one. This is Dependence. Weakness. To do anything for a little suspense. Anything to tug at those heartstrings, Tense? Please, take offense. Let the novice conjure up the ultimate snare ‘Kick Me’ signs. Water balloons. Green hair. “The paint is dry,” I would promise and you would swear You could wake up to toilet paper, draped from your car to your Morning newspaper Because if the horns fit, you would always wear them So I’ll sketch them onto your pictures and draw in a mustache What if I just slashed your tires and made for the dash? Because that would just break your heart I could fool you and you could fool me. And it could be Ring around the Rosie And if I stooped, stooped so low— As to pilfer your crown and steel your throne To be victorious for something that furnished your guilty glow? Though I could keep you dizzy, keep you busy, in a tizzy The glass would be bitter And you would scorn me And you could curse every broken bone in my broken body… But the operator quickly disconnected the line She must have easily recognized, Another prank call.

Nafeesa Bhanji 53


Unfinished Masterpiece Anorexia is an art

M RROR

of self-control, obedience of distorted reflections, bottomless numbers of shaping her body just the way she desires Perfection is never achieved After all, art can always be improved Stories can always be rewritten Forgetting what joy is and Living solely in the present What the scale dictates here and now â&#x20AC;&#x201D; all that matters Pain can be endured Techniques made to survive the day All to think about are The last seconds of consciousness to suffer Just go to sleep to escape the sculpting knife Only to start the cycle again The day right after

Catherine Zaw 54


Tatiana Jackson, Anorexia Nervosa, Acrylic.

55


MIRROR Cecilia Cabrera, Charcoal Skeleton, Mixed Media. 56


Bargaining The clouds have gathered in the sky As, lonely and forsaken, I Pray for your security; There’s nothing in the world that I Fear more than what I know must be.

My heart, thus stricken, starts to break As in my fear I start to quake; I’ve failed you, my love, my friend, I made a fatal last mistake To think that I the rules could bend.

I feel a chill creep through my bones; No longer do I stand alone, But now am shadowed by that Shade Who buries life ‘neath earth and stone, Whose taxes cannot but be paid.

Alas! that I cannot command The hand of Death, nor reprimand The fates for what mistakes they make— Alas! that I cannot demand Justice for the lives they take.

My pulse aflutter, my knees are weak With fear, for I know whom he seeks. Ask not for whom—for it is thee. The knowledge haunted me for weeks, And now, at last, it’s come to be.

I want to scream, I want to shout But I’m unable to call out The warning that I wish to speak; As Death towards you directs his route, I feel mortal, transient, weak.

Yet as the Reaper leaves my side, The doors of fortune open wide: There’s still a chance to conquer Death If I should, out of love, decide To trade for yours my dying breath.

You cannot see the shadow-hand Which on your shoulder lightly lands And guides you far beyond my reach; Alone once more, I sadly stand, Bereft of feeling and of speech.

The Shadow pauses, turns, divines, The nature of my grim designs: He knows now what I mean to bane— For, as a ghost to death resigns, I have resolved to die for you.

One day, perhaps, we’ll meet again, Beyond the thunder and the rain, And never again shall we part, But e’er together shall remain, Linked forever, heart to heart.

My heart is frozen as I wait To walk the path to Death’s estate, For who among us knows what lies Beyond this world—who can relate The visions seen by sightless eyes?

Yet more than miles separate The living partner from the late; It shall be long (or so I pray) Before I pass through heaven’s gate— Till then, I’ll miss you every day.

Yet even as I stand erect Enveloped in grim retrospect, The Shade now shakes his hooded head And, silent, declines to collect My payment, seeking yours instead.

Kimberly Berkley

57


M RROR Raye Ng, Survive, Digital Photography.

58


A dip in the mud Wipe off the grime Swipe off the slime Purge. Repent. Purify. Take it back and erase the black Smooth in the bumps and fill in the cracks. You chiseled them in and I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t help but help One by one, widening them With my piercing recklessness; Attack The catalysts of misery and the emblems of debris Scourge and blister and warped in a twister Distress generates disorder Disconnect From the origins of discomfort Learn the pain to Dispose of the pain:

The rubbing alcohol will sting the first time And freshman year will tease But drown so you can swim And let the first measure the vim Taste the berries, sure to be bittersweet And bruise without the training wheels Be the rookie. And the itch will scratch before it heals But be numb to the feel To strip the band-aid, swift and speedy To find the wounds have concealed Endure, and survival is tasty Is what they told me.

Nafeesha Bhanji

So one, two, three Complexity denotes the end of sanity Let it be as simple as can beâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;

59


P.D. Lee at Jasper I don’t know nothin’ - he lays that out firstbut people be askin’ so I tell. I been here awhile is all, it’s crazy. He lays that out, sure as hell.

M RROR Scott McKinley, Enamel. 60


Burning at Diego Flats You know you were to stand just there, just there in that plain, scrub oak deep footed thicket blasted as iron and always full of Jays. Raucous singing rises through the heat, convective, alive all alive all alive all alive all to a high reeling skim milk dome

Scott McKinley, Gouache. Both disciplined and free-spirited, Scott McKinley transfers his love for art to his students. He is a keen observer of the general and the particular. Before him young men and women present rough charcoal drawings and intricately painted patterns, all of which he critiques with insight and candor. Though his students would like to believe that his main priority is teaching, Mr. McKinleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first passion is art in its purest form. He lives to paint and to share that zeal with the next generation of artists. 61


Legacy From the holes in the ceiling small suns shone through I reached up with one hand and there grew a peach tree rooted in carpet Beside me another sprouted in a gentler, much deeper wood We blocked the shine with our fingers, little eclipses A sprung umbrage that fluttered against those equidistant stars

M RROR

The fluorescent lights melted us into complacency, a legacy Existence pure organic artificial And we coalesced into one milky, silvery pool An ocean into ourselves, a drying flooded stairwell Breathing sage on a cellophane stage With no where left to grow but upward As this miniature Mediterranean seeped into the ground I thought of the terrazzo plane, that iffy grain Under our rosaceous, watery faces, leaves as headpieces Self-assembling mosaics laying themselves in coolness Contours of warmth ever keeping the fabric impress above us —A jigsaw gesture, we cook and break, Boil and harden into a puzzlement lake We are a fluid mixture, though dissembled and cracked We are to our permanence as sufficiency that lacks Our hands still a forest of skin With initials lovingly carved in— These pieces skitter and reveal naked root Daylight flickers from the gaps of an unlocked grasp Hearts still combined, sublime, we divide And the teeth that formed our smiles file into pearl alignment Stringing a necklace I’ve always wanted

Marilyn Horta 62


MORROW


January 20, 2009

l uy Sch

66

gr ap hy.

MORROW

hustle, and this enlightened spirit spread I fought to warm the blood in until it overwhelmed the entire mass of my numb hands, while my limbs people, moving in perfect unison. ached and my legs shook. They were united in celebrating My will-power to stay this great cause, which all of us awake wrestled with my made happen. body’s desire for sleep. The focus of my I was envious of my attention then changed to friends who were the man speaking with home in the tropics. my brother and sister. I I daydreamed of entered the conversation the hot beaches, just as he mentioned he trying to transform was a candidate for mayor the stubborn, chilly of a New York city. He wind into salty handed over his business ocean’s breath. card and flashed an I noticed ambitious smile. His story people dancing to was practically identical to keep warm. A simple that of Barack Obama. He bend and twist with the e was here with his wife. A long body created the kinetic rP o t o o l time New Yorker, the cold was k, O energy necessary for heat. I h bama Button, P nothing for him. A woman joined contemplated the idea and then in the conversation and relayed her threw it away under the pretense that story. She flew from Italy just to share in this I was not in the mood. Music flowed through moment and to brag about it to her friends. the speaker system set up along Pennsylvania I wondered what was stalling the Avenue, beginning with the anthem of parade until I heard the ambulance sirens Obama’s campaign: Bono’s soft words of “It’s blare. The car flew through the vacant street, a Beautiful Day.” A pair started to do the


followed by the police. That was when we found out Senator Kennedy’s seizure had caused the delay. The crowd calmed down and silence sunk in. I decided to avoid keeping track of time after that and instead embraced the scene and my frigid fingers. The host woke us up with the announcement of the approaching march. The film was rolling. I held my breath so I could listen better. I wanted to hear the first footsteps. The trucks carrying the news cameras obstructed my view for a few panicking moments, but then my eyes spotted the target. Designed as a protective tank, the black Cadillac limousine harbored one of the most important and influential people in existence. The Secret Service agent opened the door revealing a pair of highly polished black shoes. He stepped out of the car with a bright smile and wrapped his arm around his wife who followed soon after. There they were: President Barack Hussein Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. They looked beautiful. I didn’t think the moment could excite me more until he walked forward. I screamed. I forgot how to breathe. I gasped for air, but I didn’t inhale. I almost fell trying to get the best, clear view I could get with my useless, frozen feet.

He waved to the crowd, in all different directions, making sure not to miss anyone. We waved back, screamed, laughed, and cried in joy. Everybody held hands with their neighbor, whether or not they knew the person seemed irrelevant. These few seconds were eternal. Yes, this was what we would brag to our friends about. This was the defining point that made the trip worth it. The crowd, a mixture of all classes and races, came from different states and countries, united for change, and were moved by this fragment of time and space. I waited for months; he labored for years; people struggled for lifetimes. We did it.

Mitra Hosseini

Mitra Hosseini, Inaugural Parade Film, Photography.

67


A History MORROW

My family was tortured by the Nazis. My family was tortured by the Stasi. My great uncle was a Nazi. I am German. My blood runs through the soil that soldiers walked on. I have suffered; I have cried; I have felt betrayal; I have never forgotten. For one can never forget. One never should. She was forced to tell; she was forced to lie. Funny, what information sleep deprivation can extract. This is my history. This is the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s history. This is hatred and love and fear. Do not back away from it. For if you do, you will succumb to it. Drench your clay smile with water; smear your hands with mud. Make your mark on the wall; paint it red and white. Let it dry until it crumbles and blows away in your hand. You stretched your arm out to me. I grabbed it and pulled myself up. We are but equals with the same masks that form to our features. My mask has never worn off since then. Yours seems to be cracking in places. I have water and mud, ready to fix it. Once again have I placed my Sunday smile back on my clay mask, but never again will I forget when I did not have one.

Barbara Uchdorf

68


Daniella Garone, 2 Face Joe, Sculpture.

69


Tangerine Twilight MORROW

She had been waiting here for much of the day. Here. The spot between point A (her house) and point B (somewhere else). The uncertainty factor of it all only made this spot more enticing. It was an intersection, bright lights illuminating the already electric blue sky as though it were Christmas. She allowed the heat emanating from the pavement to seep through her clothes, refusing to stand for relief. This place was perfect. Four paths met and departed immediately.

They never noticed her, and how she sat each day, waiting for the perfect moment, when God in the heavens would inject the sky with a burst of citric colors that would resonate through the clouds. Today was different. She put film in her camera, and aimed it at the sky, ready to remove the cap from the lens and allow heaven to drain itself into her camera. The rest of the walk home she was partially blinded from the image

â&#x20AC;&#x153;She was partially blinded from the image ingrained in her retinas.â&#x20AC;? People were so busy scrambling from point A (their homes) to point B (somewhere else entirely) that they never noticed the ride between. They never noticed how the man who sat across the street and sold mangoes has the habit of twitching his nose excitedly, almost like a rabbit. They never noticed the young, but tired and rapidly aging, woman who waited for the bus each day, her hands clasped in her lap, her purse held close to her like a bandolera, her eyes darting around nervously until relief came in the form of an elongated six-wheeled vehicle. They never noticed the man who ran each day, growing thinner and thinner until he began to look like death itself, stripped to the bone.

ingrained into her retinas. The world around her was tinted with a dark shade of blue, the result of staring into the tangerine twilight a few minutes too long. She wondered if they would notice if she never came back. Unlikely. If they could drive day by day ignoring the sky, filled with a brilliant orange that engulfed all horizons, how would they notice her? She would return. Not for the celestial sunset, the Christmas lights, or the electric blue sky. Not for them. She would return for the mango salesman, the fearful bandolera guardswoman, and the man who runs to escape death but instead transforms into him.

Amanda M. Nichols

70


Danielle Garone, Father Time, Digital Photography. 71


You Made Me Write Bad Poetry MORROW You made me string together the foulest combination of words to ever distaste my word processor. It’s truly upsetting. However, most bad poetry is derived from genuine feeling. It’s quite interesting to see how a writer feels his words carry the weight of the world with them, and watch those carefully crafted words fall flat two days later when it is read by a man, woman, or group of individuals with less giving character. These individuals are callous in their evaluations, not giving the content behind the flourish of each rhetorical device created strategically to appeal to the audience a second thought. In fact, the audience finds these appeals below them, and then savagely annihilates any hope of the paper being worth anything, at all, ever, as long as that ink should drip.

I write to understand as much to be understood. Thus far, I have been proven unintelligible. So what can I say I have learned? I’ve understood that I might as well be typing “asghf ” to communicate that life is too important a thing to seriously write about. So please, let us continue to write bad poetry, because it’s the only proof that we, as humans, have left to demonstrate the insatiable beatings of our chests, and the tenderized rationalizations of our emotions.

Asghf. Damn.

a

72

a ar cc


Cecilia Cabrera, Bored and Sick, Graphite. 73


Bystander Effect MORROW 74

My car reeked of pineapple that smelled almost too sweet, its aroma escaping the plastic bag sitting on the hitchhiker’s lap in the rear seat of my car. I felt bad for the man, who was carrying his groceries for the week, on his way home to his poorly nourished family. I could tell that he spent his last pennies on what his wife and children needed, giving up the luxury of a car he could use to go to work, relying instead on his well -worn shoes. “My wife hasn’t eaten pineapple in years,” he explained, overjoyed that my sympathy had given him a break for the day. “It’s her favorite fruit. I’m so excited to see her reaction.” I nod to agree, and my foot shifts downwards on the brake heeding the red glare of the traffic light. I only physically agreed; internally I knew his wife wouldn’t be all that happy. She’ d be disappointed that he had spent the money on something unnecessary instead of something with more sustenance. I only knew this because I had once been on the verge of poverty myself. Maybe

that’s why I was the only car to stop—out of the many on the road—to let the poor man have a free ride home. The man retreated into a satisfied silence, and I could imagine he was dreaming about his wife’s face finally stretching into a smile after years of stress - creasing frowns maring her complexion. I didn’t quite notice the approaching storm clouds or the rumbling thunder. Nor did I expect that poverty could drive a man so far as to risk prison to steal my life and car, along with whatever change I had in my pockets. “When the ax entered the forest, the trees said, ‘The handle is one of us.’”

Catherine Zaw


Keilani Rodriguez, Cold Morning, Digital Photography.

“When the ax entered the forest, the trees said, “The handle is one of us.”

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Black History Month MORROW

Black History Month What a great idea Let’s push aside the truth, Let us forget the reality That “Black” is American History. Let us condense this lesson. Shove it all into the shortest month of the year So that it’s over quickly And come March first Is easily forgotten Forgotten… Over quickly… How contradictory to our past, A past long Riddled with tears and forgotten accomplishments. We will only teach them four names: King, Douglass, Tubman, and Parks Smothering the complexity To further the simplicity That leads to their futility.

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We will make them do more than forget. We will make them color blind. All they will see is black and white, Not even shades of gray. The false perception Of a lack of interaction Between America and all that is Black Will consume our lesson plans. We will intensify the divide So that they forget So that they cease to believe That Black History is American History. There is no need for separate lesson.

c or a

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Ronel Constantin, I Am Me, Acrylic.


Coincidental Fate MORROW

They say it is written, Inscribed in the lines That seal our destiny When they intertwine They say you must bear The bumps on the road As symbols that come From some ancient code. The brilliant orbs above That always seem to know Were arranged by a wise hand Long, long ago. The ageless monuments That withstand time Are as much reflection As they are a sign. Do the squares on the board Decide our fate Or do we have the power To declare checkmate? They say karma overrules Everything else, But maybe all that is written Is what you write yourself.

Sonul Rao 78


Isabel Conoepan, Leaving My Mark, Photography. 79


Strange ways

Eduardo Moreno, Break, Mixed Media.

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They stay strange ways Confusing people making things hazy Made to think people like me are crazy Even though large corporate interest get paid People don’t stop to think about the minimums made Big business going try to bottle this So can the taxpayers hire some lobbyists? Man it’s the signs of time People distracted from radio and billboard signs The drinks the drugs they abuse it The TV, the radio, the music The tears the cries they abuse it Manipulate your feelings and then they use it Nobody cries when the truth becomes lies And then these lies get harbored inside Stuck in the system of misery And nobody checks when these lies become history They stay strange ways You can’t reform ‘em A society based on consumerism vanity What the fuck man am I losing my humanity? From the moment of your birth You were born to a slave Made to lie down and behave We were once swans Got turned into ducklings Started off as men Got turned into sucklings People don’t see the situation They’re already used to the lie saturation I storm through the tracks live on location To give ya’ll fools education Along with mental stimulation Trying to save a nation . . . From mental annihilation. They stay strange ways You can’t reform ‘em Michael “Zero” Akinlabi

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MORROW Tatiana Jackson, Gluttony, Graphite on Paper.

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Feed Me Every impulse that we fail to relieve will become like barbwire to our minds and strangle us. It will brood and poison. Our bodies will punish our refusals to feed it with the wonders of food, flesh, and indulgence. Once the body sins, the action purifies the soul and the proverbial itch will be scratched. However, once you sin, all that is left are the recollections of pleasure and the luxuries of regret. Yield to temptation before the soul becomes sick with longing for the forbidden fruits of life, which have become so illicit only in the mind.

Go on, have the Big Mac. After all, experience is the name everyone gives to his or her mistakes.

a

a ar cc

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Bagboy

MORROW

The list is tight between my teeth. I reach behind my ears to pull up some straggly strands of hair and the automatic door opens with a stick. I take the list, now pockmarked and wet, and run my eyes along the careful bullets. Milk, orange juice, salami, butter. Easy enough. The snowman crayoned on the bottom right peeks out a grin and I smile back at him. “Have a Memo Christmas” is stitched in a red and green semicircle above his coal-piece eyes and magic hat.

on Grammy’s dress begging for some peach rings or a big jug of detergent, which they happily to refer to as “Juice!” The constant bloop of price ringing percusses under the late Sunday flurry, and sure enough, James is restocking. There’s that fuzz on his face, but I still recognize him. He lifts a chubby palm, simultaneously recognizing me. His face is a big round plate of brown sugar with a domino smile. He could cast a shadow over me, but he truly is harmless.

The neat rows of brown tiles at the entrance cascade into a tessellation of earthy tones under the pace of my feet. Over the nickel line of shopping carts and through a length of plate glass, I see that Mom’s still outside waiting in the car, adding to her carbon footprint. Her face looks distorted through the fluorescent paint spelling a backwards SALE $2.99. Then again I’m nearsighted, so everyone has a thick fuzz growing in the space between their eyes. A few more wisps of hair escape from its confines. So again, I half-eat the list and fix my purposely messy bun.

“Hah-hah-hi.”

People subsist on what this place has to offer. Carts clink along, their wheels get caught and stuck in a bended-arm sort of way, and waddling toddlers pull

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Hi, I say in response and smile back, like I did with Mr. Snowman, now folded up in a hasty origami and stuffed in the pit of my hand. I keep walking, past the Honest Weight and half-priced Halloween decorations, fixed on locations that inch farther from James’ presence. Out of the corner of my eye, I see him wipe his hands on his apron and go on organizing Cheerio boxes. There’s a slight hesitation in every move, a back-andforth tug that makes me wonder what’s wrong with him. Bread.


Was that on the list? “Excuse me,” I say bashfully, almost running into a couple mulling over wines.

c ans . The lady cashier “Oh, sure sweetie,” and charges the the woman steps back. Her card with a big hair reminds me of Dolly chuckling shake of her Parton. head. Definitely autism, I think The platinum bunch moves to myself, the windowpane door with her, but in succession like a lesser sliding shut behind me as he grabs a hold dancer or a breathy poodle. The man pats the furry zeppelin affectionately with a of a rebel Cream of Mushroom. calloused hand as she continues to read off The parking lot is newly slicked with the back of a 2002 Merlot. Somewhere in the back of my mind I imagine ramming into the rain, and the Highlander is still running, wall of spirits, bottles exploding in red waves snug between a pair of faded blue lines over over a scab of glass. I feel for the weight in the tarmac. Two bags of groceries dig deep my pocket. Three quarters wouldn’t cover pink rings on my forearms and I wish I had gone for the more reasonable quart. Inside the cost. the car, I whine about how we should get those new reusable bags and maybe go What’s the first thing on the list again? organic. Somehow I manage to fit all the items *** into a carry-basket, lugging it down the last unexplored aisles. I see James again at the We don’t come back for another two front but briefly. As I hand the cashier Mom’s ATM card, a noisy clatter rouses shoppers and weeks, and when we do, it’s more of a family bagpeople alike to turn in his direction. The outing. Mom and I are near the bakery room grows even taller with interest when when a strange little man approaches us. he gets down on his hands and knees and I keep my eyes on the eight guava-cheese begins playing Twister with renegade soup puffs stacked in a miniature tower. My


MORROW Audrey Gonzalez, Vegetables, Digital Media. younger brother had uncovered a box of them under the assortment of coconut and cherry turnovers. Lounging face down in the cage of our cart, I consider them worthy of a fairer display. The man says he’s interested in my look (whatever that is) and adds that he’s a photographer with a studio on South Beach. I count the miles in proportion to where we are here and now. South Beach is about fifty-five minutes away. But besides that, he looks greasy.

“Sixteen.” “And uh, your name is?” “Marlenuhleen,” I mumble in a low, low voice, trying to conjure a secret identity in a moment’s notice. “Melanie?” “Yes, exactly,” my mother swoops down, placing a protective hand on my shoulder.

“How old are you, my dear?” Mission Accomplished.

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He gets a little nervous and after speaking for a while longer, hands me a business card. But when he turns to browse the French breads, I crumple it. I’ve already decided, no modeling ‘til I’m at least eighteen. All the while, the bakery ladies in hairnets are speaking loudly behind the counter; it’s a mix of Spanish and hard, broken English. Peeling back the skin of a tangerine, I come upon the rippling underbelly of a goldfish. I run my finger along the fissure that divides him in wedges. That day I don’t see James and I can’t help but miss his greeting. My mom eases out of the bright, white lines on the tarmac as I feel for the tangerine’s gills. *** There’s no list this time, I’m just here for two sheets of poster board and a pound of deli ham. I hope for a quick in-and-out so I take the express lane, wholly depending on its name.

“Howya doin’?” He stands tall with a large spherical belly at his center. A forest green apron draping from his neck and a wide, flat nose planted over a child’s smile. “I’m good,” I try and sound as genuine as I can. “And you?” “Oh. I’m fine,” he says, with the faintest Southern drawl. “Yuh-you have a niiice day now.” Then he does something unexpected. Instead of bringing up his hand again in an exaggerated farewell, his arms spread wide and hold me in a sort of loving gauze. The warmth of his embrace speaks of an intelligence that is beyond what I can comprehend, and I walk away feeling stupid. M E M O R A N D U M

“Four fifty-two,” the cashier says, chewing a good sized wad of gum. Her nails clack together like the rainbow beak of a toucan when she takes my Lincoln bill. She hands me a toffee-colored plastic bag and I thank her. “Hah-hah-hi,” His words are slurred and well-meaning, but nonetheless James startles me because he appears out of nowhere. He’s beside me by a wall of soda bottles, all gappy-grinning and waving as if I were off some far distance.

If one day there were no more supermarkets, we would probably go back the route of our ancestors—picking and hunting and ensuring our survival—but if there came a time when we did not look upon one another with love, there would be a great famine in all the earth.

Marilyn Horta

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sourtongue

Andrea (Andi) Espinosa, Sourtongue, Ink.

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MORE





Artist Dwelling

Corner Perspective.

I like to think that buildings are alive with stories to tell of where it has been and where it is going. My main focus with this design was creating a space that was suitable for the freedom and creativity necessary for an aspiring artist. After all, the environment in which you live is crucial for artistic, spiritual, and intellectual growth. 3D Model.

Mitra Hosseini

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The Sky in Front The world of architecture is everywhere. I feel that my architecture is an outlet for my vivid imagination. It is a way to express my mood, to pass up time, and to achieve something while having fun. Personally, I incorporate nature as an integral part of the home’s design. Why have beautiful landscaping if an ugly wall covers the view? Thus, “The sky in front” building is designed with a west glass curtain wall from floor to ceiling to take advantage of its surroundings.

Inside Living Room.

Jorge L. Buitrago

Isometric View.

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Transient Delight for String Quartet

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by Jiwen Lei


“Creating music is the service I render this world; it is the least I can do to express my gratitude.” To hear and see Jiwen Lei’s composition performed, visit us online. http://crhs.dadeschools.net/elysium. Click on the music category.

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Coral Reef Senior High // 10101 SW 152nd St. // Miami, Florida 33157 // (305) 232-2044

Elysium Literary and Arts Magazine 2009  
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