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The Sphinx

Issue n.1 of the Literary and Visual Arts Magazine International School of Florence


Letter from the editor. Dear reader, Love is a strange feeling that we so often read and hear about. Love is cruel, love is euphoric, love is epical. Each person feels it their own way, lives their own story, their own experiences. Our differences in cultures and minds bring new ideas, sensations, behaviors. Some value more family bonds; others friendships. With some love is cruel, with some it is forgiving. Love can bring to the highest mountains, drown in euphoria, suffocate with happiness. Love can put you on your knees and make you bow your head in shame. Take unrequited love. It is blinding. We see what love makes us see, and we don't realise the mind games it plays with us. Goethe wrote a short novel called “The Sorrows of Young Werther”, a story about unanswered feelings and suicide. In this novel young Werther falls in love with a village girl who is already engaged. Goethe shows his incredible suffering, his power of thought and the tenderness of his personality, to kill the young man at the end. As I read, I asked myself: “Was Werther not more magnificent than the girl he admired? Was he not brilliant? Was he not a delicate individual worthy of love?” Love's a mean joke. Often, in real life, the “girl” is not worthy of Werther’s attention. The person we fall in love with, may be a distant silhouette, seeming so unreachable and perfect. Love is love – it is unexplainable, inexcusable. What I have to say is, that you, the person in love, Werther, the enamoured victim, are more beautiful than whoever you love. You, with your uniqueness, you with your passions and sorrows, you with your sufferings, are angelic. Poor Werther, if only he knew how magnificent he was, and how ordinary was the girl he loved! Love led him to his demise, for which there was no reason, no excuse. Do not let this happen to you. Do not get dragged down by illusions. You are exceptional and all Werthers of this world could be saved if they only knew that they are perfect, not less, but more, than the ones they admire. Certainly we have felt and seen many faces of love, its evilness and ugliness, it's beauty and joy. Do we really know what love it? Is it an idea, or a feeling? Is it lechery, desire, or higher sentiments? All we know is what we have been through. We have been hurt by love, been delighted by it, but the universal definition still doesn't exist. Maybe it is what makes love so intriguing. The uniqueness of an individual mixes with the personality of the other, creating beautiful patterns, so different and yet so similar, honestly exposed on the pages of this magazine. Margarita Reznichenko 2

Lovebirds by Tessa Mair, Oil on canvas.


Two lovebirds, infatuated But separated only by their Strength to stay apart, A will as thin and unstable As the branch that They perch on.


The birds see each other Through their distant And unchanging viewpoints But their affections seem as pure And laughable As a careless August afternoon.

Dark replaces the August haze and As sharp air draws in The couples fly south together But the two lovebirds Like stalemate Remain separated on their Branch, frozen by Hesitation and fear.

Tessa Mair 4


A subject that boggles and complicates my little adolescent life is love. There is so much behind that four letter word. So much to question, so much to learn, and also so much to admire. Sometimes, I spend hours on the subject and its many woven branches. It’s not black nor white, this nor that. I’ve come to the conclusion that love “rules”. I guess, what I mean is, wherever there is love, there is joy, purpose, prosperity.

Well it’s alright to just say that. What do I mean? Okay, think of a teddy bear made with love. Lovingly sewn together by hand, it’s original, and it feels original. It has been made to be its best. Now, a child holds this special handmade, one of a kind, teddy bear and it is loved. The child is careful not to have it dropped into a muddy puddle or fed to the dog. It has value; it brings quality to the childs life. Because it is loved, it has a purpose; the child is happy. It’s made with love, and treated with love and so it’s worth something. There’s love and life and happiness. Now think; what if the teddy bear wasn't made lovingly, but instead looked like all the other teddies in the store boxes next to it. So it’s not made special, with any type of care or love. It’s not original, but a child does take it home and loves it anyways. Now the teddy has value; now it is original, because of the child who loves it. The teddy bear is special to this child and it has a purpose; the child is happy. It wasn't made with love, but it was treated with love. To someone it’s worth something. In the end, there is love and life and happiness. 5

But what if it was the other way around? The teddy was lovingly made with care so that in the future it can serve its purpose of making a special difference to some little child. But rather, the child that takes the teddy home, treats it badly. Without love or care. So that at the end of its life, it’s broken with fluff coming out of the lovingly sewn stitches. It amounts to nothing, it has no real value to anyone. Its not really worth anything, because its never been given the right treatment to do what its best at; making children happy. It served a purpose but not that of quality. Now what if its whole life was loveless, careless, empty? The teddy was sewn without attention or love. All its life it is dropped in muddy puddles and used in a games of temptation with the dog. In the end it is just a lump of fluff on the rug of the living room floor. It has no value to anyone, it brings no one any intentional happiness. In many ways it’s not even a teddy bear anymore…it was never even given the chance to be one. It could be different though, it could bring real joy and be worth something huge to someone. If only it was loved right. However, in this case it’s also arguable to say that if the child didn’t care and the bear wasn't anything special to start with then what difference would it really make if it was loved or not? Well…quality. The quality of both the bear and the childs life would be better. It’s pretty simple and easy to say well no one really cared. It didn’t have an affect on anyone. But what if it had a positive affect rather than none. We all need more love for there to be memories, relationships, lifestyles of a higher quality. It’s quality that lets us really enjoy life how it should be lived, to the fullest. Finding joy out of the best things, the quality things.


Let me try explain a little why I just wasted your time telling you about a teddy bear. What do teddies have to do with anything right? Well, that teddy is every single person you've ever met, seen or looked up to. The teddy bear maker is their family or whoever surrounded the teddy bear as it grew to be an adult teddy. And the child is society, friendships, the people that surround the little teddy bear. If anyone was surrounded by love, their whole life would be different to that of the life of the broken, chewed up teddy bear. The teddy who went through life without love and ended up torn and broken. The thing about love in my teddy bear story is that even though there wasn't love to begin with, later on the bear gets loved, the teddy gains value, gains quality, gains life. Love is a perpetual bandaid to the fallen and broken teddy bears. A broken teddy treated with love, will always heal.

It’s the “building people up”, and not the “breaking people down”. It is the love used to make someone feel capable, important, worthy. It is not the sense that drives each one of us at times to crush someones hopes, or the need to do or not do something for the sake of our pride. This is the “breaking people down”, to feel less capable, less important, less worthy. Therefore, without love…that is where the world struggles. That’s the origin of the big open cuts and bloody wounds of which our world suffers the heavy burden. Without love, the teddy is strewn in pieces on the rug of the black, lifeless universe. The teddy is Earth. Earth is our home, it is us. What would the world be if everyone was using love? What would it be if everyone was building each other up to feel more capable, more important, more worthy? Loving people. What would our hurting world, the broken teddy, be with bandages? With love? It would be healed.

Kayla Middleton 7

Once we met, years ago

'Neath the shadow of a summer sun sped the breeze of an ending summer on the beach, another sun there you stood, a daylight thunder

Could I know that on that day the brightest star would clear my sorrow Could you know that on that day a god of love had shot his arrow?

As the day slowly was fading, then I saw a thousand stars, they were captured in your smile shining brighter than the sun.


After years I still remember how your eyes glanced right to mine, in that moment, never ending, then it came, the evening breeze, flowing through your amber hair brought to me the scent of dreams.

But a moment only takes the same scent to fade away carried by the seaside breeze to the land of now lost dreams.

But maybe poets could be right saying that love will never die You just need another kiss to bring back the scent of dreams.

Lorenzo Papini 9


Madonna and Child / Mommy and Maia by Jessica Russo Scherr. A modern look at the bond between a mother and daughter. Acrylic and gold leaf on masonite.


There are many things I adore, laughter, fire sparks and mystery, and snow. A wonderful remedy for wintery sores, goofing with friends front of a red fire’s glow. Out in the night the wind is so cold, but I’m smiling spontaneously under a warm plaid’s folds, “I’m loving this moment, it’s so pleasant with you”, That’s what I always tell them out of the blue.

 Ginevra Lapi


Interview with Michael Landolfa

What are the differences between romantic love and friendly love? Romantic love is about male and female finding each other, partners. Of course it can be homosexual, but it’s in the direction of physical relationships, with intimate psychological and emotional aspects. There’s emotions, there’s sending valentines, there’s kissing, but the whole reason for love anyway, is to get the two sexes together to reproduce. That’s romantic love, and the emotional part of it probably came from the love that parents have for their babies. Friendly love is not really love; it’s not love in the same sense. In friendly love, whether it’s between two males or a male and a female, the purpose is for social benefit. For example, forming a cooperation or a team. Humans need to work together in order to get things done; by ourselves we’re pretty helpless. That’s what friendships are for, and they can be strong, but it’s not the same.

Do You believe in love at first sight? I believe in strong attraction at first sight. And strong attraction can quickly become love. But that also depends on how we define love; is it possible be in love if you’ve never spoken to the person? I believe that romantic love can be unrequited, and you can have a very strong attraction for someone, without knowing or even talking to the person.


Molecule of Oxytocin. Sometimes refered to as the «hormone of love». It plays a role in social bonding and sexual reproduction. (Image source: PolyPeptide Group)

Do You believe in soulmates, or that ‘the one’ exists for everyone? Absolutely not... that’s a clear answer isn’t it? Because we do the best that we can in the situation that we’re in. So if our social environment is very limiting, for example if you’re in prison, the availability of people is very different.


Is there any advice You’d give for finding love and for making love work? I think it’s probably the same advice for having a good life in general. Try new things, be outgoing, be accepting, be open-minded. It takes a fairly high degree of self-confidence and self-esteem to find love, to get yourself out there. Not to sound like the IB learner profile, but you have to be willing to take risks. Think about a shy boy who really likes a girl; he needs to be able to take that jump, to take a risk and approach her. And self-love is not only required to find a partner, but it’s required to do almost anything in life. How can you succeed in your ambitions if you don’t have self-confidence and self-love?

Thank You. (Guest Editor: Tessa Mair)


Ode to My Passport

My passport came into my life And gave me flight Like the wings of a falcon With the wings of a dove

Freedom Freedom to adventure Freedom to experiment Freedom Citizen of the World

Traveling about Like a research scientist Meddling in many cultures Like Christopher exploring the world


It began with excitement and fear Trepidation! It continues with satisfaction Jubilation!

Biggest discovery We are alike! We love, cherish, yearn, remember, forget, hunger, thirst, wonder We are different, Beautifully different It’s only skin deep I’ve seen as we smile, as we weep

Ode to my passport Ode to my Land Free to travel with it in my Hand.

Theresa Koesterer


Concerning Love.

Photograph by Leo Horiuchi

I truly believe that the concept that currently is known under the name of “love”, in its romantic sense, does not exist. The current thought of a higher feeling, that involves profound affection from both sides and refined emotions. There are multilateral issues with the way “love” is seen now. Love does not exist. True love is a powerful feeling that is more of an immature and sincere instinct. It is important to say that instincts are never refined or elegant – true love is coarse, simplistic, pure. It is not less worthy however.


Romanticism and gallantry don't come from sincere love; these concepts were created to fit the image that doesn't exist. It imitates the lure. The illusion is easily broken by the routine: romanticism cannot survive in harsh conditions of reality. A massive drapery covering the window and not letting the observer behold the view. The crudity of the true love has been a long time a weakness, a sin, a delinquency.

This statement can be easily fortified by observing any triangular relation in which: a is looked up to, admired by c, a acts gallant and romantic towards c, b has true feelings for c, but acts awkward and foolish b was rejected by c,

This example can be followed easily through many life situations and many can recognize experiencing this triangle on one or another vertex.

True love and romanticism can be paralleled to life imitating art. Romanticism is graceful, however unreal. Romanticism implies elegant gestures and poetic words which are not possible if one truly loves. True love is real – it comes as it is, in its true, simplistic form and for this reason it is dismissed as a weakness. Love as an emotion that underlines self-sacrifice and putting the lover's needs and desires over your own. It usually gives the beloved person almost full power over the admirer, drives the admirer to act thoughtlessly, shyly, mindlessly, strangely in general. True 19

love is loss of control and almost-pathetic behavior of an individual that desperately seeks the admirer's attention. True love has nothing in common with romanticism. True love can be though of love of mothers; they bear their child's rudeness, ignorance and cruelty, without ever stopping loving them. Mother will protect her child regardless how evil their acts can be and how much shame they bring to her. True love is loyalty – loyalty of a dog. Forgiving all, and sacrificing yourself for the loved one. Love is loss of control, obsession and devotion. The characteristics of love have similarity to the symptoms of a fever – it is why love in literature is often compared to a disease.

From the psychological point of Darwinism, the likeness of sickness and strong affection explains why people view true love as a weakness and why they despise it. If evolution requires survival, love is a direct obstacle to it. Real life is crude and vulgar in comparison to art – it is in this way that romanticism “rules” over true love. It is more pleasurable to indulge into dreams than become a marionette under the cruelty love. This is the reason behind heart breaks; expectation does not meet reality, simply because these illusions cannot be reproduced in real life. Those illusions are aroused and fed on art – people worthy of pity truly believe in the possibility of such romance. The common unhappiness with the relations that those people have, derives from the certainty that “love” will find them, that the chance either has not come yet or was missed. Films, literature, media often pose “love” as something natural, generally clear, extremely poetic and mostly effortless. Love is not effortless – in fact, love is sacrifice, many times ugly with its crudity and simpleness, and stumping one's pride. Love is pain, loyalty, devotion, sacrifice, forgiveness, fixation, consumption, recklessness, temerity. It is not poetic or elevated. But at that, true love isn't charmless. Anonymous 20

Counterfactual History What if rash Romeo had lost his nerve? Abandoned hope upon learning her name, Too cripplingly risk-conscious for fate’s game, Whose end was written on the wall. “Preserve

Convention, play it safe,” he might have thought, Making his eyes unsee—careful reserve Applied with pains to prudently preserve Two lives, let each plod on; if underwrought,

Redeemed enough for deftly thwarting Someone’s cruel mockery which, ruthless, sought To shrink them to a faded image taught As Textbook Tragedy, by aborting

Lives mid-laugh, mid-murmured candor... You would approve, I’m sure, purporting That since they lost it all by consorting, Romeo should have stayed a bachelor.

What of that Roman who courted a queen? You’d surely scorn imperial grandeur— But since Mark also chose to pander To his heart, you would twice-damn his keen, 21

Rather extravagant self-destruction. You dream of ideals, from what I’ve seen; Your eyes cancel the void between This broken world and your inspired construction—

You are a boy of reason, conviction; I know you’d give Antony the notion To recant, doubt, flout his raw emotion --you lack patience for frivolous fiction,

Which is all you have ever seen in love. “Mark should have prioritized jurisdiction; Duty should have required a restriction On his passion”—you would have had him shove

His feelings for Cleopatra away Beneath imposing shadows of Gov, Law, Equality, causes far above The fickle cycles of day-to-day

Sentimental folly. Here’s the kicker; Had Helen not led Paris’ eye astray… “A war averted! Case closed!” You’d convey Your point with an eloquent flourish, no snicker --You’re too dignified for that—but perhaps


Some sass, a clever quip far quicker Than any dissenter, and much slicker, Smoothly prompting their absolute collapse. As you did mine.

You know how those bittersweet stories end, But dismissed ours before it could begin. You think great thoughts and miss the point…I tend Dreams that, undone by distance, cannot win.

I thought to beat the clock, but overstepped. Our hands lay side by side, but never touched. Your eyes were kind, but they shifted too much. I wear a smile and claim I’m not bereft; If only it were true I’m glad I left.

You’re young, proud, and I set the bar too high; Our paths? Skew from the start, because I tried Too hard.

Nipped at the bud, denied our chance to fall— My dear, I grieve for both of us, and you don’t grieve at all.

Sophie Culpepper


Interview with Jos Koevoet.

How have your friendships changed since you were younger?

They have grown deeper. More interesting I would say. I think my best friendships were forged when I was in university, because of the time (I spend with my friends). I lived in a student house and we spent lots of time together. It was the first time to be away from our family so I think those friendships were definitely stronger and deeper than the friendships before that time. I think I also changed a lot as a person during that time.

What do you have in common with your wife? What are differences? How do they contribute in your relationship?

Well, my wife comes from Indonesia, which has a very different culture than the Dutch culture or western European culture so we have a lot of differences. Oh where should I start?? To Ossi who passes by: “Ossi, how are we different?” Ossi: “Well, we certainly look different for a start!” I think that compared to Indonesian culture where the group is very important and the family is very important, there are tons of differences. However, sometimes I am surprised how well we get along, how I fit in the Indonesian culture and Ossi 24

fits in the Dutch culture. I like the social feel of Indonesia, the friendliness, the harmless jokes. I also like the Dutch sarcasm and irony, which the Indonesians don’t have at all by the way. The fact that we both have a relationship with God also helps us to connect with each other and binds us together. It helps us to enjoy life and get over differences, forgive and be grateful for what you have in each other. When somebody does you wrong and you recognize that it is also the other way around, then you eventually realize how much you are forgiven and it is also easier to forgive others and move on.

Do you love teaching and if yes why?

Yes, I really do. I think it’s fun and intense, I like to be with young people and my days (and years!) go incredibly quickly. It’s fun to work with young people. Teaching is something I can do with my heart. You know what they say: Once you find a career that you love, you will never have to work a day in your life. I’m grateful I found work to do that I love! I would hate to work for a company that produces plastic boxes and make a living that way. Then what’s the outcome of my work? That people have plastic boxes? I don’t value that at all. This is different! I help students understand things they never knew before (and will forget soon after, I know). Not just me but as a team we at ISF help students learn, they develop, we witness that and we do that together, which I find fascinating.


Do you think sex is appropriate before marriage? Have society's views on this changed since you were younger? Have your views changed?

I believe sex is something very special, to enjoy with someone special in a committed relationship. It’s meant to be a celebration of that special relationship. For me that special relationship is marriage and I love it! How society sees sex has surely changed over time. I think that nowadays our society emphasizes sex more and there’s more exposure to sex via media. When I was younger the sexual aspect of love was a bit less in-your-face I think. On the other hand, when I grew up in Holland sex wasn’t a taboo at all and ‘public displays of affection’ were rather public at our school in fact! Personally I think that our societies need more of the empathic aspects of love: the brotherly, sisterly, friendship-kind of love, because that’s what you need to build a society on. I see the emphasis on the sex aspect of love, but you can’t build a society on sex alone. What we need as a global society now is that we empathize with and care for each other. We need to encourage and stimulate this in schools and in our communities!

Thank You.


‘’The silence often of pure innocence persuades when speaking fails’’

-Shakespeare Winter’s Tale Act II, Scene 2

Untitled by Elena Ivanaj. Acrylic and silver leaf on masonite.



Book Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone

In the book ‘’Daughter of Smoke and Bone’’ by Laini Taylor it starts with a strange girl named Karou. She lives in Prague and collects teeth for the only family she has known. I liked this book very much because just little details like teeth play such a vital part in the book. As the story continues towards the mysterious angel, Karou doesn’t understand why there is something strange between them. When the angel comes into the story it makes it very interesting because he adds a mystery to Karou's already strange and mysterious life . The mystery in this book is very well written. For example, the tattoos on Karou's hands are another vital key to the mystery of who she is. Little hints come their way in this book without you knowing, which I believe is very well done and adds intrigue to the book. This is why it did not take me long to read. Let’s not forget other characters in the book. Karou's friend adds great humor that adds a kind of spark to the story. This has to be one of the best books I have read. It has an ending that makes you want to grab the next book and see what is going to happen. This type of book grabs you and doesn’t let go until you are done the whole trilogy. There is pain, vengeance, love, humor and mystery to this book which definitely was a worthwhile read. If I had a choice to add this trilogy to my bookshelf I definitely would.

Sintia Lemos 29

I remember when we first Thinking how it could have been So many questions waiting to be answered And my love growing like a cancer

My friends tell me I should let go Bet they ain't know nothing 'bout love This feeling's all I know So please don't go

Spring is here Stay with me Under the cherry tree

Stay with me And never leave Tell me how you feel

I need you to love me we can be the best you've ever seen Just give me the “once upon a time



I've always dreamed�

Don' know how to tell you what I feel So scared to tell you what I feel Francesca Cetta 30

Un Sorriso

Photograph by Leo Horiuchi

“Sorriso” è l’unica parola opportuna per descrivere la ragione per cui ho perso la testa per te; il tuo sorriso dolce ed amorevole Anonimo


Прикосновение                             Легко, еле заметно                        Как ветра дуновение                     Не игнорируй, тщетно.                 

Постигновение                              Наступит аккуратно,                      И в убеждение                               Перерастёт прохладно.           

Возникновение                             Как по началу скрытно,                 Но через мгновение                      Пристанет любопытно,                  

И наслаждение                          Поглотит безвозвратно, Как сновидение Придёт неаккуратно

Sevastyan Chernigov


Interview with John Pitonzo.

Do you think being friends with your spouse is an important part of marriage?

Yes, because I think if the relationship begins with a friendship, which I believe it does, when you meet someone and you have a lot of fun with them, that’s kind of the basis for a friendship and so continuing this always finding new things to do and to keep the relationship exciting helps a lot. It is important in a marriage to be friends, because it isn’t always easy and if you’re friends you can tell each other everything so not just the fun stuff but being able to share everything.

How has your marriage changed during your life and after having children?

First of all we fell in love at first sight both of us. I didn’t know she fell in love with me she didn’t tell me until later, but it’s changed over time, because there was very little responsibility in the beginning and then the responsibilities grew and Mariana came along and our whole focus was on her. I think most people who have children, they’re putting so much focus on the children and less focus on each other so then all of a sudden fast forward the kid leaves and you’re standing there looking at each other: “Oh hi what’s your name?” and you have to get to know each other again and my wife and I realized, we were picking olives one day, we were having a laugh in the olive garden, “Oh this is the first time we’ve actually had fun like this since Mari is gone” and she said “Oh yeah right, to be honest I was kind of worried what would it be like without Mari” and I said: “Well yeah it’s okay it’s cool, because now we are rediscovering ourselves again.


What are your thoughts on divorce in general?

My thoughts have changed about this over the years. I have never been divorced but I’ve had lots of breakups. I’ve been dumped a lot by women, probably more than I actually dumped them, so I’ve been through breakups. So whether you’re married or whether you are with someone I think some people you just can’t stay with forever and it is unrealistic to think that you would stay partners with someone forever, especially if you’re not getting along.

Is there a difference between being in love and loving someone?

I think there is a difference between being in love and loving someone. We love a lot of people. Being in love is manifested a bit differently than loving, but I think you can do both. I think that being in love is not a constant. Sometimes you’re more in love than other times. I think being in love is in some aspects more complete. I think it is very physical with regards to the other person. I don’t think it’s superficial, because it is so physical. I think it is all about the other person. I think sometimes we love others also because of what they give to us. Being in love is also very intimate and I would say selfless, because it’s is all about the other person, because you are crazy about everything of the other person. When you’re really crazy about everything of the other person: their voice, their eyes, and their smell then that’s being in love.

Thank You.



Today I try to be in the now Whilst my monkey mind wanders to then. Imagining how it would be for the ones who left, to see the beautiful new me... The caterpillar, almost a butterfly... But I return to the present and realise... If they didn’t fully love the old me Do they truly deserve to see me fly...

Catherine McPhilemy


Photograph by Leo Horiuchi


I'm sitting here, writing a poem for you, With no inspiration, nothing to do

Sitting here, thinking about those famous poets, the ones that make sense Because what i'm writing now, would get me two cents

I look to the right, as you walk through the door I was trying to stop, but now I just like you more

I know this is cringy, I know this is bad But you're the only thing I think about, in my head you're trapped

My heads all over, I can't put it to rest. Now I'm just thinking about those moments, the ones with which I'm obsessed

You're just too sweet, with you I just feel so secure It's the way I feel, this I assure But I have to try to hide it, I have to be mature

You're a part of me, but to you that doesn't matter at all It wasn't planned like this, I didn't want to fall


Falling I did, into a deep dark hole. It leads to nowhere, nowhere at all.

When you talk to me everything upsetting goes away All I want is for you to understand it's better to stay

Stay with me, this way I can stop the hunt But you look so happy, like life's the way you want

I don't want to push you, by no means of And it's in this moment I realize nothing feels worse than unrequited love

Now I could go on and on, about my life's grand problem, but I need to get back to this poem. So I can go back home.

But just wait for the next one, don't worry it's about these feelings in me Just know you're absolutely perfect, as perfect as you can be.

Until next time, Anonymous XOXO


Be You. give in to yourself given in and don't come back

you will never be the best never absolute never the greatest

you can be you it is more than the fittest, the smartest, the fastest, the most glorious

no one can tame you no one can overcome you you are you

become the you of your best moments become the you of your daydreams

everyday be more never stop desire more

obsess with who you are forget who you could be forgive who you couldn't be


love yourself enough to break bones to leave speechless to make them cry of your kindness

your strength is you your passions your pains your honors your failures

distinctive alone you you you

accept you be afraid of you be cruel to you be honest to you

give in to you and never come back



Do you see me?

Fragment of ‘’A Couple’’ Tullio Lombardo c. 1490/1495

An island in myself, amidst a crowd, Only I, hear sirens screaming out loud, Youthful, perhaps a bit, to feel this way, More than simply a question for a day, Plans well laid, intense emotions not ignore, There, standing still, rocked to my core, Frozen on a cliff, afraid to fall, Will you ever see me? Love me at all?

Giulia Bartolotta


List of Editors. Giuditta Parri

Prose Editor

Isabella Lovalvo

Prose Editor

Zoe Genschel

Poetry Editor

Rebecca Grundmann

Interviews Editor

Margarita Reznichenko

Dramatic Writing Editor

Sintia Lemos

Book Review Editor

Grace Ihle

Art Editor

Mrs. Allen

Supreme Editor

Kind Thanks to all the contributors, editors, and especially to Mrs. Allen, without whom, none of this would be possible. Cover Art: Lovable by Sofia Volpe, Acrylic on masonite panel 42

The Sphinx Issue n. 1  
The Sphinx Issue n. 1  

ISF Literary and Visual Arts Magazine