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M O NTA GE t h e ar t a n d l i t e r a r y j o u r n a l

2017

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VOLUME 36

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M O N TAGE t h e a r t a n d l i t e r a r y journal

VOLUME 36

2017


MONTAGE

Montage is the annual student-produced art and literary journal of Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut. SUBMISSIONS

Submissions to Montage are free and open to all Quinnipiac students enrolled at the time of the journal's publication. Submissions were accepted in the categories of poetry, prose, visual arts and photography. Submissions were reviewed blindly by the Montage panels. COLOPHON

The fonts used throughout this publication are Helvetica and Courier New. 750 copies of this journal were printed by Tyco Printing in April of 2017 in New Haven, Connecticut.

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STAFF CO-EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Kyle Liang

CO-EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Kristen Riello PROSE PANEL

Stephen Krom VISUAL ARTS PANEL

Erin Kane Matthew Mattson Hector Ogando Christina Popik Jessica Wahl JOURNAL DESIGN

Kristen Riello HISTOLOGICAL STAINS

Rob Cottrell ADVISOR

Staff

Lila Carney

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DEAR READERS,

Letters from the Editors

You may be wondering what you’re holding in your hands. As the Co-Editor-in-Chief of Montage for the past year, I can start by telling you what you aren’t holding. You aren’t holding a random collection of poems or a cute book of photography. You aren’t holding a journal or magazine thrown together by a couple college students with a mild passion for art and literature. And you certainly aren’t holding a laughable compilation of fancy words and iPhone pictures.

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You are holding the product of months spent building a community around art and literature. You are holding months of collecting and reviewing submissions and weeks of designing and arranging. You are holding my bloodshot eyes, the echoes of raised voices over what pieces to keep and what pieces to leave out, and the smiles we all wore when we realized that we finally finished something worth sharing. Montage may be the title of our journal, but we represent more than a series of pages displaying artistic and literary talent here at the university. Montage is the hub of creative expression at Quinnipiac. It is the home for all those who are aspiring, emerging, or established in writing and the arts. We are a place for students who are unlearning who they once were in order to better understand who they are becoming—and our doors extend beyond those who study English or design to those who stay awake at two in the morning writing about their cheating exes or those who beg their roommates to stand outside in the snow for what they believe will be a cool shot. And luckily for us, this journal shows all of that.


If this is your first time reading Montage, then I hope that as you finish reading each section and peel back each page to flip to the next, that you imagine yourself not only shedding preconceived notions about our student body, but also unraveling the poetry, prose, photography and art in order to see the writers and artists who graciously gave us their knotted pasts and twisted perceptions of the present. Allow yourself to dissect every line, befriend each character, and harvest as many images as your eyes can harvest. Empty yourself of what you thought about Quinnipiac and let our words and images pour into that space until you are filled with creativity, then let that creativity transcend inspiration. Give us your attention and we will give you our stories, our beating thoughts, and our art. Thank you, and enjoy the 36th volume of Montage. Sincerely, Kyle Liang

CO-EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

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DEAR READERS, Thank you for picking up the 2017 issue of Montage. This journal is more than simply the art and writing of the year. It represents the hard work of the talented students and members of Montage. It also represents the journey Kyle and I went on during our time as co-editors. I was introduced to Kyle at a concert. He immediately forgot my name and shook my hand several times. I remember him as wearing his track uniform. If he actually was or not, I’ll have to ask him. After finding out we were going to be co-editors of an art and literary journal, I was optimistic but also unsure. Could a runner be a poet? Could a poet be a runner? Little did I know, a runner could be much more than just a runner, and even more than a poet.

Letters from the Editors

As Kyle and I got to know each other, there was a sense of reciprocated inspiration. We bonded over our love of typewriters, and from there, the new typewriter-themed brand of Montage was born. I brought that theme into this journal by choosing the body font Courier New. It represents the start of our whirlwind time as co-editors.

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Kyle and I, along with the members of the panels, poured hours and hours into every detail of this journal and over the many submissions, deciding we had to be stricter with our selected pieces otherwise we would’ve had a dictionary-sized journal. Many cups of coffee, on and off-topic conversations, and hard decisions were made hovering over the pages laid out in front of us.


Our dedication to making this journal and organization as impactful and as representative as possible can be seen throughout the chosen pieces and the order of the pieces.

It is unbelievable to me how many talented writers, poets, and artists are hidden away at this school. I feel as though we have only scratched the surface with this journal, and that there are many more art and literary geniuses at this school. I have learned through my time as co-editor that not everyone is willing to share their craft. And that’s alright. But it’s the ones who are brave enough to submit their work, to put their heart and soul out there to be judged― it’s those individuals who make Montage possible each year. It’s those individuals who inspire me to be a better leader, artist, designer― the ones who pushed me to create a unique and beautiful design to be the background of their work. But it’s the readers and the people who support the art and literary community here on campus who really make this possible. So again, thank you for picking up this journal. It represents more than just art and writing, it represents a journey. Whether you’re here to see your own piece, to appreciate others’ work, or are unsure of what lies within these pages, you have a home in this journal. We’re all separate pieces that form a whole, a montage. Sincerely,

Kristen Riello

CO-EDITOR-IN-CHIEF 9


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The histological stains used for the cover, dividers, and various other pages throughout the journal are images from human tissue that have been processed in a lab. Fixed, embedded, sectioned, and stained with dyes in order for cell components to be visible and then observed under a microscope. These cross sections were taken from different areas and organs of the human body including skin, lungs, heart, bone, and liver and are displayed throughout this journal in order to illustrate the transparency, conviction, and provocativeness that Montage represents. Through this journal we wish to reveal the aesthetic that lives in all of us. Our aim is to make the artistic nature and the unapologetic humanness of the Quinnipiac community visible and accessible to a wider audience.

Histological Stains

HISTOLOGICAL STAINS

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Table of Contents

i. COLLECTED PARTS

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STARLIGHT Joseph Powell - Poetry

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RETROSPECT Ben Lanza - Photography

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A SUMMER WALK Aimee Trottier - Poetry

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CAROUSEL Madi Hayes - Photography

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UNTRUTH THE DARE Kelly Collins - Prose

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NICARAGUAN SUNSET Sarah Doiron - Photography

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PALE FLOWERS Jennifer Rondinelli - Photography

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HANGING Madison Fraitag - Photography

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LOST AT SEA Drew Johnson - Poetry

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TIGHT KNOT Erin Kane - Photography


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THE SPRING AFTER John Acker - Poetry

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PETRICHOR Jessica Wahl - Photography

ii. DRINKING WHISKEY IN PUBLIC 36

ONE DRUNK IN A THREE-PIECE Alexi Mangili - Prose

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THE TIME YOU LOST YOUR ROSE Nicole Burke - Photography

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HORIZONTAL GREY Matthew Mattson - Photography

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untitled Carly Timpson - Poetry

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I'M OUTSIDE Tristan Smith - Photography

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CORNERS Rosie Persiani - Poetry

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SHADOWS Elizabeth Freeman - Photography

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YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND Jane McNoble - Prose

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BRICK WALL Hannah Wolfson - Photography 13


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untitled Hector Ogando - Illustration

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VASE WITH TWELVE SUNFLOWERS Kelsey Fisher - Poetry

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A PEEK OF NATURE Caitlin Cryan - Photography

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DEAR (EX) LOVER Kyle Liang - Poetry

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EXPIRING Kristen Riello - Photography

Table of Contents

iii. GRANDMA IS HIDING UNDERGROUND

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NOTES TO SELF Nhung An - Poetry

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NIGHT CYCLE Richie Petrosino - Photography

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RED HARING Stephen Krom - Poetry

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RESISTANCE Wesley Clapp - Photography

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untitled Gizela Zaqueu - Photography

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untitled Gizela Zaqueu - Photography


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HOW TO HACK YOUR EX-BOYFRIEND’S GMAIL TO GET INTO HIS FACEBOOK ACCOUNT Trisana Spence - Prose Winner of the Wilder Fiction Prize

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MISSING PERSONS Suzanne DeWitt - Poetry

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A PLACE TO READ Sophia Alfieri - Photography

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TOPPLED STRAWBERRY NEEDS LEMON-AID Zara Kahn - Painting

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SOLVITUR AMBULANDO Erin LeDrew - Painting

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THE RISE AND FALL OF KINGS AND QUEENS Stephen Krom - Prose

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TURNAROUND Samantha Bashaw - Photography

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MY GODFATHER DOESN’T WEAR ALL BLACK Marissa Landino - Poetry Winner of the Donald Hall Poetry Prize

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IDEA Kirsten Koedding - Photography

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BE THE LIGHT Filosmar Cordeiro - Photography

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WHO WE ARE

107 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 15


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i. collected parts 17


Starlight

Joseph Powell It has been said that you only truly die Once your name is last spoken Only when the last memory has faded Will you follow in its place You die a million times before that In individual's minds When will be the last time your mother Says your name? The last time your brother Remembers your smile? The final moment your children Recall your embrace? When will your lover Last remember the taste of your lips? Or the color of your eyes? Or the sound of your voice?

Poetry

You are not just your name Or even your voice You are a collection of bits Thrust together under pressure and heat You are the love in your heart You are the kindness in your soul You are the sparkle in your eye When you are truly happy

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You are a diamond Made of pure stardust Sent from the stars To sparkle and shine You are so much more than your collected parts You are priceless Made from starlight


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Photography

Retrospect Ben Lanza


A Summer Walk Aimee Trottier

My feet stomp on the wet pavement as the force of walking downhill pulls my body fighting for control while the leash squeezes my hand, my arm leading me with each jerk and tug and pant as Norman chokes on the thick summer air, his slobber hitting the steaming pavement that is already wet from the summer rain that still continues to drip from the thick green leaves of the trees shadowing us from the protruding sun, and thank god for that shade because my shoulders are stiff,

Poetry

the skin feeling stretched tighter than ever

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from the weeks spent drowning in the never-ending summer.


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Photography

Carousel Madi Hayes


Untruth the Dare

Prose

Kelly Collins

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“Truth,” Kat’s reticent response slips out of her mouth quite quickly and freely; she does not hesitate. She pulls her tanned legs in closer to her shivering body, hugging her knees into her chest as she lets out a coy laugh. Her teeth chatter uncontrollably. Bruce drums on the decaying, wooden deck. An annoying monotone hum rings from his vocal cords as he contemplates what to ask Kat. Bruce has had a crush on Kat since the third grade. Kat has no idea. They are my two best friends. We do everything together. She mindlessly flirts back and subconsciously leads him on. It definitely doesn’t help that I have a boyfriend now. Vernon and I have been dating for almost two years now and whenever the four of us hangout, it almost feels like we’re going on double date. A breeze from the ocean cools the night air, sending a chill down my spine. I stretch my legs out in front of me, attempting to warm my already numb toes in the abating fire. Sitting silently, I watch while Vernon pokes at the burning, orange wood. Little drops of rain begin to fall from the vast darkness of the night. A small line of tiny black ants trails across the deck, single file. I watch intently as they move in unison, wondering what it must be like to be so small and insignificant. Sparks fly in the air, not much like the ones that caught my attention when Vern and I first started dating, but the kind that burn you if the wind is blowing in the wrong direction. I wonder if the pea-sized sparks from the fire or drops of rain would accidently kill any of those tiny, marching ants. “Is it true that you went to third base with


Pat Harding in eighth grade?” Bruce finally asks. Bruce has been jealous of every guy Kat’s ever been with. Kat looks at me, as if I were supposed to answer for her. I shrug my shoulders and smirk, as if to say, “Go head.” She shifts her gaze towards the fire, her clear blue eyes looking at nothing directly, shifting in her red and yellow striped fold-up chair. “Well what do you mean third base? I haven’t used football language to explain my sex life since high school.” “First of all, it’s baseball not football, and second of all, you know exactly what I mean,” Bruce pushes back his sleeves; his muted flannel is worn with grease and dirt. He leans in slowly, antagonizing Kat. “Did you, Katherine Hayden go down on Pa--” “Ok, yes,” Kat interrupts before Bruce can go on. “Yes I went to third base with Pat Harding in eighth grade. Happy?” She looks Bruce dead in the eyes. The flames reflecting off of his widening irises make him look almost cartoon-like. “Yes, very,” he laughs, sitting back in his half-rotted, soggy beach chair. “OK Kat, now you go. Who do you chose?” “I choose…” Kat scans the three of us; Bruce, Vernon, and I look back at her, the crackling of the fire sporadically filling the elongated, void of silence. “Vern.” “Alright, hit me with it. What’s the best you got Kat?” “You didn’t even answer! Truth or dare?” “Right,” Vernon laughs (seemingly at his own ignorance) as he throws back a shot of whiskey. “Dare.” He slams down the bottle, precipitation dripping down his hand. I laugh quietly and smile; I’m so lucky that Vern gets along so well with Kat and Bruce. Kat turns her attention towards me, her long 23


blonde hair matted and straw-like from the salty water; she tucks a strand behind her decorated ear. “Don’t kill me, but he asked for it.” She faces Vernon and clears her throat intentionally. “I dare you to skinny dip in the ocean.” Great. There goes my calm and peaceful night by the fire. I look over at Vernon who is already standing up and beginning to undress. “Please don’t.” I pull on Vern’s sleeve and give him the sit-your-ass-back-down-or-else look. He notices what I am doing and looks away immediately (as usual) and continues to unlace his shoes and take off his socks. “Fuck you, Kat,” I respond jokingly and yet somewhat serious. Now I have to get up from my well adjusted, warm beach chair and stand in the cold wet sand on the windy salty beach while my boyfriend streaks through the ocean. “You know it’s been drizzling for like the past 15 minutes now, it’s probably going to start pouring as soon as we get down to the beach.” I’m so content with going nowhere right now. “Come on Liv, don’t be such a fun sucker. You suck fun out of everything,” Vern replies like a child. I roll my eyes at him and wrap the halfdamp towel that’s hanging on the back of my chair around my shoulders. I look over at Bruce and Kat who are already up and standing next to Vern. A cigarette hangs from Kat’s lips as she searches the ground for her lighter. Bruce grabs the cigarette from her mouth and holds it over the fire as she continues to struggle looking for her lighter. Bruce takes a drag, “let’s go, bro,” he says as he looks at Vern. “Really Kat?” I say, hoisting myself out of my chair and onto my two feet. I glare at her. Kat stops looking for her lighter and takes back her smoke from Bruce, taking a drag and exhaling while she shrugs, “sorry!” She grabs Bruce by the 24


arm and starts heading towards the water. I start shoving all my shit into my pockets; will I really need a full pack of cigarettes, lip balm, water, and my phone just to stand in the cold for 15 minutes? Probably not, but I bring it all anyway. I’m always the last one ready, attempting to strategically plan the next part of my night. “Should we put this fire out before we go?” I yell to my three best friends who are already yards in front of me. “Just leave it! The rain will put it out eventually!” Bruce yells back at me. I slide into my faded sandals and start walking somewhat quickly— a half-assed attempt at catching up with everyone. They’re almost to the dunes; I’m almost to the end of the driveway. As soon as I make it to the top of the dunes, I can see the moon shining through the clouds, creating an iridescent glow across the water. The wind picks up, whipping my hair in every direction. I pull my hood up, trying to tame my hair. Kat, Bruce, and Vern are at the edge of the water now. I crouch down low, huddling under a towel that is probably making me more cold than comfortable. I squint into the darkness as I try to watch the three of them from the top of the dunes. They look like little ants marching across the horizon. One breaks off. Of course, it’s Vern. A long, low rumble vibrates beneath me; a bright beam of lightning strikes over me. It begins to rain heavier. Now I’m even more irritated and even more freezing than I was before. “Vern! Kat!” I scream from the top of the dunes, “let’s go! This is getting dangerous. Let’s not be stupid!” I pause and listen intently for a response, but all I can hear is the rain and approaching thunder. I scream louder, repeating myself, thinking they probably just didn’t hear me. A flash of lightning blinds me. I hear Kat 25


Prose

shriek and it echoes through my body. I cover my eyes with my now soaked hands, where is Vern? I’m squinting through the downpour. I can see Kat and Bruce running into the water. A tiny black ant bobs up and down in the dark sea. My vision is worsens; my heart rate quickens; my head throbs. I start sprinting towards the ocean. The rain pounds against my face, weighing down my hair and clothes. I’ve never run so fast in my life. He’s still so far away. I learned once that when an ant dies the others carry him onward. The water floods my mind. I’m running. My sandals are long gone. I don’t even feel the numbing temperature of the water as it encompasses my body. I fight against the chaotic ebb and flow of the waves, moving deeper in. They hoist his body into the air and onto the shore. I run to him and fall to my knees. My body is coated in layers of wet sand. I hold his head in my lap. His face is pure white and his lips are blue. My limbs are convulsing, my body, shaking with fear and anger and love and longing. My jaw quivers as my tears begin to overflow. My hands tremble as I try to grasp what is happening. His body is still. My rain falls and splashes and scatters like ants across his porcelain face.

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Photography

Nicaraguan Sunset Sarah Doiron

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Photography

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Pale Flowers Jennifer Rondinelli


Photography

Hanging Madison Fraitag

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Lost at Sea

Drew Johnson Toes drowning in sand as I push off to sea, My wooden cocoon’s fate decided by waves, Tossing oars overboard, now the sea’s slave I look to the sky as winds cut through me. A reminder that I am merely meat. My mind is oppressed and it won’t behave, My heart a survivor, beaten concave, Leaving me to question my will to be.

Poetry

Peeking over the waves, I see your sand. Stirring a hurricane in my heart, You’ve made a sailor a beggar for land, A love mangled, slaughtered, right from the start. I lie in my boat, perhaps my coffin, Leaving time and your tide to reel me back in.

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Photography

Tight Knot Erin Kane


The Spring After John Acker

The sweat of spring grew thick upon my palms as I reached the cut of the yard. I knew the cost of what was to come. Brambles sat gross and cross like a thick and sharp pile of knots that bent and groaned from the dust of the pollen that lived within their gaps. Berries, swollen and red, clung on like blood clots. They throbbed under the weight of my hungry gaze‫ـ‬ I tore away a piece, and felt the warm thick juice surface and pool in the cracks of my skin. The seeds tucked themselves inside my mouth like small and grainy grit. I snuck the rest inside the house and drowned them alive in cream and sugar; their form submerged under the white and cloudy murk.

Poem

The ones I left within the yard began to rot and melt, they smelled of sweet death. The ground below began to swell and all I saw was you, and then the grass engulfed me whole, my feet and soul were stained with green and red once more.

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Photography

Petrichor Jessica Wahl


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ii. drinking whiskey in public

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One Drunk in a Three-Piece Alexi Mangili

Prose

He’s leaning there, smartly dressed in a three-piece suit and tie, as if he is not nervous about having lost his job or that he is more than tipsy. You can see his shaking fingers gripping the business section of the newspaper in front of him and the whiskey bottle peeking out of the pocket of his empty briefcase. People move around him without even glancing at the wrinkled clothes and bloodshot eyes. He can’t be the only drunk on the station platform, even if he appears better dressed than most. You peer around the waiting area. There are possibly four more in the vicinity though you’re not sure the two teenagers count since they might be only high. The gray smoke from whatever is pinched between their teeth drifts lazily in the dead air. Luckily, the humidity is low so the suit that the man’s wearing must not be too uncomfortable or sweaty. He shifts and sags more comfortably against the cement beam, drawing your attention again. The florescent lights do not flatter him. Actually, the lights don’t even flatter you; they stain you a sickening yellow. He is like a ghost. You briefly worry that he might be sick rather than drunk and then remember that there is probably little difference for him right now. He turns a page of his newspaper and you glimpse the deepening crevices of his face. Most of them are from disapproving the casework of unfortunate underlings or being stubborn about the little things in life like his parking space in the company garage. Age may have increased the number of lines, but only frowns will form canyons of that shape. You don’t believe that he is ancient,

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merely nearing fifty-five with the genes for hair loss. What is left of his hair floats like a paperthin halo of gray. It reminds you of those stained glass windows in your church that depict saints doing Godly works. You know that if you could see the top of his head, you would find a shiny bald spot the size of a tennis ball like one of the monks. Yet you know that he is not a monk, and if he had ever been religious, he must have given up worshipping when it conflicted with his work schedule. You know that he must have been a manager of a firm. Not a well-known firm, hence the overdressed and now wrinkled state. He overdressed to compensate for the firm’s lack of prominence and give himself the needed confidence booster or make himself feel more important. He would strut like he was the boss through the building, ordering people not even working under him to do mundane things such as fixing the coffeemaker when he knew perfectly well that they had a maintenance worker hired to do just that. The real boss wouldn’t like his too important attitude or his tall, portly stature, being a shorter man himself. He would only allow the older man to work there due to his results because you know he had to have produced something to afford a solid watch of that size. Now with the appearance of a new promising and significantly younger recruit, his boss had taken the once overconfident man aside to explain that he was being let go. You could hear his response. “I’m as old as the firm itself! Older than you! I have seniority! I hold the business together! You need me!” You know that his too loud protests would only help his boss decide that it was time for him to go. He would tell him to empty his briefcase and check himself out. The older man would leave without taking a thing on his desk. 37


Prose

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All his awards meant nothing now, or maybe they meant too much. His hands were unable to touch the remnants of his success, the memories more bitter than sweet. He didn’t have any pictures of his family pinned to the corkboard, having never married as evident by the ring-free hands. He may have been married once, but the wife must have smartened up and left when he never paid her any attention apart from showing her off at office dinner parties. Swept up in young romance, they had never thought work would come between them. She had watched with narrowed eyes as his love fled to the firm. She tried everything from confrontation to pointed silence, but he didn’t even notice that she had left until a week later when he received the divorce decree in the mail. And wasn’t that humiliating? Having to pay his own lawyers to defend him and help settle the whole thing? Because you know that he would never go to a different firm other than the one he has always worked for. He got to keep the apartment, although she took most of the furniture including their king sized mattress. You know that he would not have had the time to refurbish or he would have thought that it wasn’t worth the effort and probably would have bought a full mattress to simply have some place to sleep and recharge before going to work again. Being laid-off meant that he would be spending more time in that empty apartment. He must wish that he had spent more time redecorating. But the worst humiliation was that he had to take the train because they kept the company car, a BMW from the ‘80s. He loved that car. He thought the two-seater implied both prestige and class, when you know that most of the population saw it as old and outdated. His eyes flickered anxiously from the newspaper to the train announcements to the exits, never once resting on a fellow


passenger. Fundamentally different from the way his fellow pedestrians purposely have not looked at him. Their gazes are diverted to politely pretend ignorance to his suffering while his avoidance echoes in both contempt and selfalienation. You wonder if the self-alienation is a reaction to the man’s self-pity as well. Stopping by the liquor store on the walk here to cope with these feelings after thirty years sober is a no brainer. You can recognize a long time drinker and he isn’t one. Too shaky from nerves rather than alcoholism. He wouldn’t drink on the job and let his judgment be impaired. Now you sip your coffee as he goes and sits on a wooden bench, waiting for the train to probably take him back to his bland apartment so that he can continue to get drunk and break down in the privacy of the truly alone. He can’t have many friends if he is already by himself and drinking whiskey in public. His friends would be all work related and they were more tolerated acquaintances than people to count on in times of crisis. He saw their cringing faces when he turned their way. He imagined that it was due to fear rather than disgust. You can’t tell if the man will recover from this disappointment. He’s taking the change too hard. Maybe you should give him the address to that broker friend of yours. Instead, you watch as the man stands, wavering for a moment before grabbing his light briefcase and staggering toward the arriving train. You briefly hope that he’s getting on the right one before taking another swig of coffee.

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Photography

The Time You Lost Your Rose Nicole Burke

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Photography

Horizontal Grey Matthew Mattson

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untitled

Carly Timpson

Poetry

You've got troubles in your mind, And pain coursing through your veins. Anxiety is the beat of your heart, And fear is the power in your brain. Life tests you with one thing after the other, But I've got a hand for you to hold And you've got a heart that makes me want to sing. I'll dance around and stomp on the demons That creep in your shadow. I'll hold you tight So the pain can trickle out of your eyes. I'll have you laughing so loud You'll scare off anyone trying to make you sad. I'll kiss your least favorite spots And you'll feel your heart exploding To make room for all my love. I'll love you until your very last breath And pray that it's not a sigh of relief.

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Photography

I'm Outside Tristan Smith


Corners

Rosie Persiani

Poetry

We were quiet As we glared at each other Across the room, Our eyes harsh; I tapped my fingers Against my thighs Trying to recreate the patterns You left on my neck. I couldn’t achieve The same sensation You left me with— But I think I got Pretty damn close; You ran your hands Through your hair And exhaled heavily, Opening your mouth To say instead, “I think this is the part Where I say It’s not you It’s me”

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Photography

Shadows Elizabeth Freeman


Your New Best Friend

Prose

Jane McNoble

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“The stupid thing about sleeping,” Hannah Henderson blearily thought as she slammed down on her alarm clock, “is you never want to fall asleep at night nor wake up again in the morning.” Even with this shining revelation Hannah had made, it still took her a full ten minutes and a second alarm on her phone to coerce her out of her cocoon of warmth. She felt victorious for a brief moment, only for her to immediately trip and fall on her unfinished pile of homework. As she lay with her faced pressed against her carpet, Hannah wondered if someone or something was laughing at the practical joke that was her life because she definitely did not find it funny. After she peeled herself off the floor, Hannah sullenly shuffled through her empty house to reach the bathroom. She didn’t turn on the light until the mirror was out of view because Hannah thought that no one should be subjected to her monstrous face that early in the morning. When she completed her morning routine, she knew it was time to face her, well, face. However, as Hannah closed her medicine cabinet to see her reflection, things became extremely weird. Instead of seeing the horrifying image of her dull, frizzy brown hair paired with buckteeth and a nose that honestly reminded her of Squidward from Spongebob Squarepants, there was nothing there. It wasn’t like the mirror was somehow broken because Hannah could clearly see her salmon colored bathroom walls and the reflection of her Frozen towel hanging on the rack telling her to “og ti teL!” but there


was no Hannah. As Hannah waved her arms in front of the empty reflection, she felt despair creeping in. Could she really be so horrible at everything that she couldn’t even look in a mirror correctly? She got so upset that she tried to hit the mirror, but as her hand made contact with its cool, smooth surface, the world felt as though it flipped. The sensation was so disorienting that she had to shut her eyes to readjust. As she opened them, all she could say in her state of shock was, “Who knew that I would go completely mental on a Tuesday?” Hannah looked around the room that greatly resembled her bathroom in utter amazement. Everything was eerily similar except for one thing: the room had been completely flipped. The toilet was now sitting innocently to her right like it was completely normal for it to have moved from her left side where it was just moments ago. When she glanced down, Hannah saw that the handles of the faucet on her marble sink were swapped. She stared in horror at the red and blue dots indicating the “hot” and “cold” handles that decided that today would be a good day to give Hannah the ole switcheroo. It was then that an inkling of an idea came to her mind, but it was so crazy that Hannah almost dismissed it immediately. However, she felt compelled to prove herself wrong, so with shaking hands she reached for the drawer that she knew contained her toothpaste. She reached in and dug through all the moisturizers and hair products to find her prize. When she finally got the tube in her hands and looked at it in all of its minty glory, she had to grab onto the edge of the sink to prevent her knees from giving out from under her. Everything about the tube was the same, from the color and brand to the little crack in the cap from 47


Prose

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when Hannah stepped on it last week. Everything was the same, except the writing, which was a mirror image of what it was before. That is to say, it was completely backwards. “There is no possible way I can be in my mirror. I can’t handle being crazy on top of everything else that’s wrong with me.” Hannah said, gripping the edge of the sink until her knuckles turned white. Yet everything in front her just served as further proof and the most obvious detail was the Hannah-less mirror that sat stubbornly in front of her and portrayed a towel that she could now clearly read, “Let it go!” It was then that Hannah decided she had enough, and she collapsed into a heap onto the hard, tile floor. As she laid there with her mind racing faster than a jackrabbit, Hannah registered another sound coming from outside the bathroom. Someone else was in this reflection house and if Hannah’s estimations were correct, they were in her room. She decided that she needed to sneak up on them before they could get her. So, Hannah tried to creep quietly back to her room, but she couldn’t avoid all the squeaky floorboards like she usually did. Despite this, the sounds from Hannah’s room did not cease, so it seemed that she still had the element of surprise. Though it seemed the universe had other plans because as Hannah entered the room she was the one who was shell shocked. The girl in the room had her face, her hair, her everything. As the girl turned to face Hannah, the only difference she could detect was the shirt, but that was solely because the phrase “I don’t want to taco about it” with the teary eyed cartoon taco was displayed backwards on hers. They stood there staring for what felt like an eternity, but in reality could not have been that long. Then,


the doppelgänger broke the silent staring contest. “Oh, it's you. Look, I don’t know what you're doing here, but I don’t want to see you right now. I quit.” Hannah 2.0 said morosely. “Quit?” Hannah echoed. She had too many questions bubbling in her mind, so she focused on the most confusing one first. It was baffling to see herself talk and move from an outside perspective. It was like having an identical twin. “Yeah, quit. You know, I have worked as a reflection for more people than you can even comprehend, but none of them have said even half of the terrible things you said to me. A reflection can only take so much verbal abuse.“ The more Hannah 2.0 spoke, the more emotional she became. “It’s either about the hair or the stomach or the nose. God, you criticize your nose more than anyone I have ever known. What’s a Squidward anyway?!” The reflection heaved a shaky sigh. “And those aren’t even the comments that hurt the most. Useless, unwanted, unneeded…” Hannah 2.0 trailed off and swiped angrily at the tears that were falling despite her best efforts to stop them. Hannah was suddenly sidelined by an onslaught of crushing guilt and her mind flashed back to all the times she had stood in front of her reflection and nitpicked every little thing that was wrong with her own appearance. "Hannah. I’m sorry. I didn’t realize that I was directing all those comments at another person. I would not have said anything otherwise. Please don’t quit. I need you.” The whole thing sounded horribly impersonal and Hannah 2.0 only scoffed at her words. “Don’t give me that. You don’t need me. You can barely stand to look at me on a good day. What’s 49


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the point of a reflection if you don’t even look at it?” Hannah was stunned. She never could have imagined someone who paid so much attention to the things she says or does. She didn’t know how to make this better, but she knew that she couldn’t leave her reflection in this horrible emotional state. It wouldn’t be right. “There isn’t anything wrong with you. I know for a fact that you are doing your job the best you can given the circumstances. The problem here is with me. This is not like the times before where I’m just telling us how ugly we are. I think there’s something actually wrong with me. I’ve lost interest in everything and I always feel empty.” Hannah never told anyone about this, but something about Hannah 2.0 made it feel like she was only talking to herself. “I really do need you. How else am I supposed to see when I get a bad zit?” The reflection chuckled at that. “But seriously, I truly am sorry. I never meant to hurt you in that way. I don’t want to hurt anyone else.” The reflection peered at her with understanding eyes, but she seemed frustrated. “You still don’t understand. I don’t want you to hurt you either. If your best friend was your reflection, would you be as mean to her as you are to me?” Hannah 2.0 asked. “…No” “Then I got news for you pal. You are talking to your new best friend. You. Or is it me? Oh whatever, you get what I am saying.” The reflection laughed. Hannah cracked a smile. “Does this mean you’re coming back?” asked Hannah The reflection smirked, “Yeah, it does. I can’t give up that easily. All the other reflections would


make fun of me.” Hannah felt something in that moment and it took her a moment to identify it. It was pride. She was proud that she was able to fix one part of her life and this feeling made her want to do more. She wanted to feel happy with herself again. “I promise that once I get out of here, I will talk to someone and get some help. I want to be positive and I want to love myself.” She hugged her doppelgänger, which was disconcerting to say the least. Once they pulled apart, it was like the reality of this whole situation came back to Hannah full force. “So…. How do I get out of here?” Hannah 2.0 just winked. Hannah Henderson woke up to her alarm clock blaring at top volume. Once she slammed down on the button, Hannah got out of her bed and went to go disable her second alarm, making sure to step over the unfinished homework haphazardly lying on the floor. Then she made her way to the bathroom. She turned on the light and completed her morning routine. When she was done, Hannah looked into the mirror and she smiled at her reflection. The reflection smiled back. Unbeknownst to Hannah, in the top left hand corner of the mirror sat a three small letters drawn by a dirty finger on a smooth mirror. “FFB”

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Photography

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Brick Wall Hannah Wolfson


Illustration

Hector Ogando

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Vase with Twelve Sunflowers Kelsey Fisher

Across the table sits a weary man, slouching over the bland surface. His fists pressed up onto his cheeks. Disheartened by the figure before him. The yellow vase, with the yellow sunflowers, sitting upon the yellow table, all up against the muted teal wall. It's all so dull to him. The sickly petals are drained as the stems droop over the edges. He wills them to stand tall, and yet they remain, unmoved by his feeble desires. He wishes for more color. More to capture his eyes. So they can dart around. He wishes for vibrancy to bounce off every surface like a rubber ball.

Poetry

But instead he gazes at the yellow vase, with the yellow sunflowers, sitting upon the yellow table, all up against the muted teal wall.

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Photography

A Peek of Nature Caitlin Cryan


Dear (Ex) Lover Kyle Liang

Remember the last time we saw each other? You were running your fingers along my back before reaching your nails past my skin. You continued to dig until you arrived at my spinal nerves, at which point you wrapped each one around your pointer like a receptionist with a telephone wire. You drew on them until they snapped out the same way a plug abandons a socket the moment you try to stretch it.

Poetry

And like the socket, my flesh laid loose

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and open. After you finished, you threw me off of you


and went home to weave a bed of spinal threads so that when I laid my head, I felt nothing— no touch, no pain, only the thought of you sleeping with everything I needed to feel again. The next morning I went downstairs to wash the part of us we left on the sheets. Then I went back up to lay on my shivering bed and thought about how the water will fill with you and me, soaking every inch of cloth before the rinse cycle begins, and how I wished the candle fell onto the carpet that night, swallowing the both of us in its anxious spreading

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so that maybe then I wouldn’t have been the only one turning to ash. But instead I’m left reliving the light from the tiny flame, splashing across your face as air fingered the slots of my back too wide to mend

Poetry

themselves.

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Photography

Expiring Kristen Riello

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P

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P

iii. grandma is hiding underground

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Notes to Self Nhung An

A hundred percent Asian. How much percent gay? The French colonized Vietnam so now we use the Latin alphabet and roam on ancient French style streets. Thanks; but no, thanks. I once burned all the flannels I owned because they might make people think I was gay. Is that homophobia or self-hatred? Look at my bag of tomatoes! Mom holds up her plastic grocery bag to the camera while yelling into the phone. Fifteen for less than a dollar! You can’t do that in your America! Every word in the Vietnamese language has only one syllable. “Chào” means hi in Vietnamese and sounds like the Portuguese’s “tchau” or the Italian’s “ciao.” Why didn’t the French make us say “bonjour”? My favorite cousin visited Paris once. It smelled like piss and looked exactly like Hanoi. Underwhelming. I had sex with that Yale girl again today and really felt the existence of hell. I’m not religious. Is that homophobia or self-hatred?

Poetry

The Vietnamese eraser is “gôm” because the French eraser is “gomme.”

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I have the most unique last name. An. It comes from the first king of Vietnam. Am I the original Vietnamese even with my


grandmother’s Chinese gene? I love you, she said exactly a week and three days before she hopped onto some random guy’s dick. Oh, I thought we weren’t exclusive? Is that love? The first king of Vietnam got the country trapped in more than a thousand years of slavery. My family still thinks I’m straight. “Boogers” in Vietnamese is “cứt mũi,” which is literally translated into “nose’s poop.” English has no sense of humor. Sometimes I pity her for loving me and hate myself for loving her. Is that homophobia or self-hatred? I used to mix up the word “tentacles” and “testicles” when I was a freshman in college. That poor little octopus. Congratulation! Mom always sends me a sticker with this word on Facebook because she thinks it means “I love you, dream about me” in English. I have decided not to correct her. How did they manage to hide grandma when China and Vietnam were clashing? Underground, dear. My fingers still smell like her vagina. How much soap do I need to get it off? I have a date soon.

Maybe I should apply for an asylum permanent visa 63


since Vietnam will condemn me when I come out anyway. But do I really want to stay in the U.S.? Yale has a gay Asian community, masquerade balls, naked parties, and organized orgies. What? Congratulation! That same sticker again. I have slowly unlearned her smell, her voice, her car, and her birthday. Maybe. Speak up! Mom yells into the phone, again. I miss living in that chaotic, deafening city. Silver Camry. November 26. Fuck. Fun fact: there are 7.5 million people in the city of Hanoi. Vietnam is built upon wars; you must learn basic military skills at the age of 16. I know how to hold a rifle but they were never loaded; we were kids. When you’re older, red envelopes no longer carry money; they carry condoms. The sound of helicopters’ blades cutting the wind in movies still startles my mother. She often pretends like she didn’t expect a bomb. Congratulation!

Poetry

I love you too, mom, of course I’ll dream about you.

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Photography

Night Cycle Richie Petrosino


Red Haring

Stephen Krom

Poetry

Brush strokes stoke the fires of riots as more microphones are traded in for hand grenades, and other ways of making gruesome people Pollocks. The world needs more pairs of soft hands kept smooth through use of primary colors. This white-walled, brainwashed place has me with fists raised behind the blank face of one of your multi-colored stick men after shattering a mirror out of fear and watching my webbed reflection get elected. Behind my eyes, the color leaks, bleeds, and I begin to see kaleidoscopically. I was told that the brain secretes the mind by a pink Floyd Mayweather-ing the dark side of pop-culture. I just pop a few blues, collar up, and watch white collar criminals, spew hate into the heart of this colored country and call it “news.� What would you do if you knew that there were graffiti vandals spraying hate over the red, white and blue in Melbourne? Red fire, white pride and blue tears wept by chalk outlines of dead artists. Your pictures litter our city streets while we bring forth the lamb of reason and season it perfectly before the pyre. And the light betrays our innocence in our tube socks and ray bans. It takes two drops of spray tan to see a sepia utopia, but I know that you bled red, not rainbows.

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Photography

Resistance Wesley Clapp

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Photography

Gizela Zaqueu

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Photography

Gizela Zaqueu


How To Hack Your Ex-Boyfriend’s Gmail To Get into His Facebook Account Trisana Spence

Prose

Winner of the Wilder Fiction Prize

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First, you must spy on his profile through one of your non-significant ex-boyfriend’s pages, who has no knowledge that you’ve already hacked his shit. You then lurk on the ex-boyfriend’s page which you wish to hack for several months. You must be careful not to like anything. You do not want to draw unwanted attention to yourself. After months of watching, you decide you should give it a go. Through your prior searches you obtain the email address that he uses for the account. You go to the main login page on Facebook. You enter the email address and attempt to guess the password. You type in all the old passwords that he used to use when you dated him for 4 years. As you suspect, they won’t work. Yet, by the grace of God, you will be prompted to a new page, a page you’ve never seen. This page will tell you that if you’ve forgotten your Facebook login then you can use your Gmail account. You smile. You then head over to Gmail where you proceed to type in the username, however the password will still be a problem. You then click the section that says you have forgotten the password, and it will ask you to enter the number that you want to send your recovery code to. Lucky for you, his account will be linked to an old phone number; a number you know now belongs to some Spanish guy named Javier because you called it last week. You type in that


old phone number. You don’t want any steps tracing back to you, so you make a Text-Free account, from which you text Javier in hopes that he will provide you with the code. You must connect your Text-Free account to an email address. You make a new one. For the email, you name it something unpredictable like Rabish.Singhal@yahoo.com with a password that reads “Cheaters101”. No one will ever guess that you’re Rabish because the name is strange and Indian, and Indians are always hacking shit. Your ex will never be able to guess the password because he is a cheater and cheaters have a hard time identifying themselves. Your email account will work. You then send a text to Javier saying “hey, I know this is strange but I use to have this number and I need to get the code so I can take it off of my email account”. Javier will take more than 24 hours to respond to you. You become scared because you think your plan has failed. Then, after 26 hours, you realize that Javier is with the shits. Javier will send you the code. Once you are provided with the code, you are prompted to create a new password. You do that, “Cheaters101”. Once you are inside his email account, you find all of his personal shit. You see all the jobs he has applied to and even spend time reading his resume. You laugh uncontrollably knowing that his life is still fucked up. You then go through his attachments where you find pictures of his new baby, his Jr. For a moment you become sad. Then you snap out of it and plaster a non-forced smile on your face because his baby is ugly. You then realize that you’ve spent way too much time on his Gmail page and get to the fun stuff, his Facebook. You log onto his account using his 71


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Gmail information. It works and your heart drops. You run out of your room and scream loudly at the top of your lungs “I did it, I fucking did it!" Your roommates will rush out of their rooms to interrogate you about what is going on. When you tell them, they are proud of you. They pat you on the back and ask if you can work on hacking their exes’ pages next week. You agree. You run back into your room and close the door because you have some digging to do. After three hours, you have read every single message in his Facebook inbox from top to bottom, but there is only one thread that matters to you. The messages with his girlfriend. After reading their messages, you have her social security number, state ID picture, pictures of her baby, her nudes, and a whole bunch of other personal information, the perfect starter pack to ruin her life. Although you do not intend on ruining her life, you will remember that one time last year when she tried to say that you lied about going to his family reunion. That with the combination of their messages and their son will make you bitter enough to up the ante. You send all of the documents that you’ve collected to your computer. You realize it isn’t valuable if no one knows that you have it, so you make your presence known. You text him from the text free number and say, “Guess what?” He will then reply by saying “what? And who’s this?” You reply to his text with a smirk on your face and, like a kidnapper who has stolen a baby, you say, “I have your bitch's nudes!” You continue, “I’m trying to decide if I should post them on your Facebook page today or Friday”. You ask him what he thinks, but his answer will not matter. He’ll become mad and say


that you’re lying. He calls your bluff so you send him one of her nudes out of a collection of many. You go back and forth, tell him how ugly his son is and that karma is a bitch. You forget for a brief moment that you dated him when you were younger and that he’s an official Crip straight from the heart of Crooklyn who doesn’t use the letter B and slashes out the letters “O” and “D”. He responds to you by saying that he better not find out who you are because he’ll run up in your house and shoot up your family. You won’t be scared by his threats or hood behavior because he can’t find you, right? You continue back and forth for a few more minutes and then he stops responding. You think he’s done entertaining you until you get a message on your personal phone. “TRISANA! BITCH, I KNOW IT'S YOU, YOU LEFT YOUR LOCATION ON DUMBASS. I KNOW YOU GO TO SCHOOL IN HAMDEN.” You panic for a few seconds but then you calm down. You remember that he’s broke, still looking for a job and has no car. His girlfriend is equally broke and neither him, his girl nor his baby has a pot to piss in. This will give you confidence because you know that he won’t make good on his promise to shoot up your family. You think about denying that it's you, but realize that you have the nudes which means you have the upper hand. You respond to him with anger saying, “fuck you nigga” as if it is his fault that you left your location on. He doesn’t respond for another hour and then randomly writes, “damn sana (the nickname he gave you), out of everyone I wouldn’t expect for you to do this to me.” He wants you to be sincere, respond with the opposite emotion. “Fuck you, you deserve this, should’ve never lied 73


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about the baby bitch.” He won’t respond. The next day while walking to class, expect a call from his girl. She first threatens to press charges. You respond by telling her that you don’t give a fuck about charges because you’ve been working at the same law firm for 4 years and they love you. Needless to say, you have attorneys on deck. She then realizes that you are the boss in this situation and that she better come correct. She will plead. “Please don’t post my nudes. I have a baby now and I don’t want to be all over the Internet.” Tell her that the problem isn’t her, it’s him. Also, tell her that she should watch the company she keeps and that it’s his fault she’s in this predicament. She will say that she knows he’s a liar but that she has no proof. She will ask you to call him with her on the phone. Agree. She calls you and you call him. Unbeknownst to him, she is on the phone. The conversation will be great. He will apologize for all the hurt he has caused you and admit that he has been lying about you to his girlfriend. You will bring up the family reunion that you attended and he’ll admit that he invited you there. Everything that he has lied about, you will bring up, and he’ll subtly admit to it without even knowing that he is digging a hole for himself. You cry because you have finally proved to his girlfriend that he has been the one leading you on for years. Once the conversation is almost over, you tell him that he can have his Gmail back because you got the closure you needed. You provide him with the information and then end the conversation. You hang up the phone. His girlfriend texts you the words “thank you, for allowing the truth to finally come out.” You


respond meanly by saying, “bitch, you should’ve listened to me when I was trying to tell your dumbass this shit the first time.” Tell her to stop texting your phone now. Tell her that you have her address and if she does anything else to irritate you, you’ll have to choose between coming to her doorstep and beating her ass, or releasing her nudes. After the day’s events, sit down by yourself. Grasp what has happened. Self-reflect and ask yourself why you chose to do such a thing. You won’t say it out loud, but in your heart you will know that you only did it to hurt him as much as he hurt you. After those thoughts, continue your day as if nothing happened. Later that night he texts you saying he has one last question. “Go ahead, ask,” you say. “Why did you do it?” Instead of telling him the real reason, you say, “Because I can nigga, now get the fuck off my phone”. Two Weeks Later Things have died down. He doesn’t text you anymore. You check his Facebook page through your non-significant ex-boyfriend’s page and see that he hasn’t posted anything. You smile. By another miracle you will get a random message from your phone. The message states, “Gmail Verification Code”. You remember that you changed the number to your own. You laugh. You realize that you still have access to his Gmail account, meaning you still have access to his Facebook. You put your phone away because it is not time to hack his page again. You walk into class and take your test.

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Missing Persons Suzanne DeWitt

Poetry

before you get lost (or lose yourself) be sure to fill your life with people who remember the little things about you how you like your coffee how you dislike paperback books how you avoid cracks on the sidewalk be with someone who has memorized the rhythm of your skin can trace the faint lines and creases whipping past one another like rush hour traffic knows the exact coordinates of the freckle on your upper left thigh make sure of this so that if you ever go missing or shatter into a thousand unspoken words or forget who you are somewhere along the way not a single precious piece will be missing

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Photography

A Place to Read Sophia Alfieri


Painting

Toppled Strawberry Needs Lemon-aid Zara Kahn

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Painting

Solvitur Ambulando Erin LeDrew

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The Rise and Fall of Kings and Queens

Prose

Stephen Krom

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She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you on the first day of high school when you stepped onto the bus. She flashes the same smile, the same recognition. It reassured you that you make an impression. You had that in middle school, but that was to be expected. There were only five boys in your entire grade; it was a private school, and you were the new kid from public school. You were foreign, unknown, exotic. It wouldn’t be the same, seeing old friends when you went back to your town’s high school. It wasn’t the same, but there was something in the way she looked at you that comforted you. You were coming home. Maybe that’s why the smile meant so much. You were six when you met the man with the broken watch. It was your second week of second grade and everybody was quiet. Your mom had come to get you instead of having you come home on the bus. And while she was ushering you through the hallways, a teacher had run up to tell her that the second tower had fallen. You had asked what that meant. On the way home, a pickup truck ran a red light and hit your mom’s car. Your mom swore and got out of the car and a few moments later ran to your window and told you to stay in the car. She then crossed the street to the pharmacy to find a phone while yelling, “Someone call for an ambulance!” You strained your neck to steal a look at the other driver, but you could only see the top of his head. Unbuckling your seat belt and opening your door, you hopped out of the car and jogged over to the driver’s side window. Inside was a


scatterscape of shattered glass. The man amongst the mosaic was mumbling something over and over through slightly parted lips. Each time, crimson saliva would bubble up in the corners of his mouth. You remember being horrified. “Hey, are you okay?” You reached up, unlocked his door, opened it, and the man tumbled out. He laid with half his face pressed to the pavement. A fresh stream of blood trickled from both of his nostrils. “Somebody’s getting help,” you said to him “don’t worry.” The man’s right eye searched for you and finally focused. His right arm shook violently as he struggled to push himself up. You tried to help him. “It’s OK. Help is on the way.” The man gurgled something, coughed, and spit a red splatter across the road. “I tried, but I couldn’t.” His voice was faint. “I tried.” He fumbled with the watch on his left wrist. His left arm hung limp at his side. “Help me.” You tugged at the strap and managed to slide the watch over his soaked hand. “Good. Good.” He nodded. When you tried to hand it to him, he grabbed your hand. “Take it. Keep it. You are the king now.” He stared at you through swelling eyelids. A drop of blood welled in the corner of his left eye. “I’m so sorry. I tried.” Your mom had come running and screaming your name as the man’s head slumped into his chest. You didn’t tell her about the watch. The watch was glass faced and encased by dark bronze. Inside the glass was a thin stone. Around the edges were carved Roman numerals. There was a small dial above the twelve. In the middle (where the hands would be) was an inscription: “Virtutem Regis”. The band was well-treated leather. It must have been refurbished multiple times, but the stone was ancient. On the back of the watch “AGAIN” was hastily scratched. 81


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You would examine the watch for hours when you were younger, wondering what the man had meant. You always wore the watch. One night, when you were a bit older, you tested a budding theory. You pushed the dial and said “again” and it was the morning before and you were waking up to your neighbor peel out of his gravel driveway. You squinted your eyes in disbelief and breathed in and out, slowly, whispering “OK. OK. Okay.” You thought back to the dinner the night before. Again. There you were across from your father who was commenting on how the chicken looked a little pink. In high school, you really started experimenting: Seeing how far back you could go and if you could go further. You started seeing what you could change. You started to learn the guidelines, the boundaries. One time you tried to change a shot on goal during a lacrosse game and got so disoriented that you tripped. It took five tries to get it right. Your grades started to drastically improve and teachers would say how happy they were that you were applying yourself. Your mom told you how proud she was when you got your SAT scores back and that maybe you should start thinking about Ivy League Schools. You told her not to worry about that. They would be too expensive and time wouldn’t change that. Instead you went to a local university to be closer to home and things you may have to change. She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus. She flashes the same smile, the same recognition that reassured you that you make an impression. You smile back and draw her into a hug. “How have you been?” She says that things are alright and how long it’s been, as if you don’t know, as if she hasn’t always been in the back of your mind. “Well it’s great to see you! Come inside. It’s


cold as fuck out here. I’ll get you a drink.” You laugh, take shots, play pong. Her eyes meet yours a couple times and a different sort of look is exchanged. She smiles a different kind of smile. But it’s been too long to be too familiar. Everyone else at the party seems to fall away, to blur, and you’re left with just her in focus. You both reminisce about high school about teachers and dances and relationships that happened and relationships that could have happened. The night ends and you walk her to her car. She pauses and shivers. It’s two in the morning and now it’s even colder. You’ve grown up since high school, but you worry that you haven’t grown up enough. The same feeling that kept you from telling her then stops you from telling her now. She hugs you and whispers, “I had a really great time tonight. Thanks for the invite.” “Thank you for coming.” You both let go. “It was so nice to see you. I missed you.” She smiles that same, different smile. “You missed me?” Someone yells your name from the bonfire. You turn and when you look back to her, she’s getting in her car. She tells you to text her and says again that she had a great time. She pulls out of your driveway and you watch her tail lights disappear. You shiver. Again. She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus. “How have you been?” She tells you that things are alright. “Well, come inside.” You wrap your arm around her and direct her toward the door. She turns her head to you and gives you a shy look of confusion. Shit. Again. She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus. “How have you been?” She tells you that things are alright. You gesture to the door. “Let’s go inside. Why is it so cold?” 83


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Your best friend sees you open the door for her and follow her in. He comes over to you both and winks at you. He gives her an awkward drunk high five. “Hey, I didn’t know you were coming. It’s great to see you!” You ask her what she wants to drink and she asks what beer you have. You love that. You tell her the selection and she chooses the stout. You love that too. Throughout the night, you laugh and talk about the golden days of North Branford High. You dance to the top forty and hold the table for four games of pong. She has you take a selfie of you two with her kissing your cheek. She captions it “Pong King and Queen”. You kiss her by her car and she tells you that she wishes that you did it eight years ago. “I can’t believe how long it’s been.” She tells you to text her tomorrow and someone around the bonfire calls your name. She leans in and kisses you. “Text me when you get home.” You watch her pull out of your driveway and stand there. You don’t even notice how cold it is. You text her the next day and she comes over. The next month you go to her house and her mom can’t believe how “grown up” you look. She falls asleep in your arms and you don’t want to wake her up, so you watch half a season of Sherlock. You see movies together every Tuesday because movies are five dollars on Tuesday. A month later you invite her to dinner with your parents. Your mom hugs her like it’s high school again. You drive back to your house and she climbs on top of you when you sit down and ask what movie she wants to watch. Again. You travel around the country, searching for good food that summer. That winter, you go to her parent’s house for Christmas and build the Millennium Falcon out of Legos with her youngest brother. Next Christmas, she flies her parents out to your apartment in Seattle. She said that life


is too short to waste time being “correct” in a relationship. She says that she is happiest when you are together and that she knew how you wanted to move to the West Coast, so she did too. You tell her that you love her. She smiles a smile that you’ve never seen before. It freezes time. Again. In a year, she starts getting headaches. Two months later she gets sick. A month after that, she’s gets sicker. She stays home from work more and more. She stops going to work altogether. She’s gone to the doctor and has been given medicine. A few days later, she passes out, reaching for a can of soup in the cabinet. You tell her that you think you both should consider moving back home so she can go to her doctor. A month later, she’s holding you while you cry. You hate yourself for being so selfish, but you can’t stop. She kisses the top of your head and you love her for being so strong. Her doctor says that she doesn’t know what’s wrong. It isn’t cancer. It isn’t anything. Her doctor tells you and her parents, “It seems as though she is just running out of time.” You ask what the fuck that means and her mom cries into her dad’s shoulder. Eighty-Three days later, she dies in a coma after fainting again and falling down her stairs at home. You were downstairs when it happened. You were going to take her to your weekly movie. Instead, you sat on the bench next to her in the ambulance, squeezing her hand and whispering into her ear that the movie didn’t even look that good and got bad reviews. You don’t go to her funeral. Instead, you scroll through the photos you have of her, trying to remember the countless happy moments you both shared. You finally land on the picture from that party so long ago. You think of what the man had told you after the car accident. If you are the king, she is your queen. Again. 85


Prose

She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus. You hug her mom at her funeral. Again. She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus. She flashes the same smile. You travel to Asia with her because she says that she’s always wanted to go to Japan. When she tells you that you can’t afford it, you say, “Who needs savings? Not me. Not when I have you to spend them on.” She smiles. You feel her hand loosen in yours and you hear her flatline. Again. She steps out of the car and you pull her into your arms. Again. She steps out of the car and gives you the same look she gave you when you stepped onto the bus.

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Photography

Turnaround Samantha Bashaw

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My Godfather Doesn’t Wear All Black Marissa Landino

Winner of the Donald Hall Poetry Prize all the time. He doesn’t even like it, just the black jelly beans that taste like licorice and we don’t all have connections to the mafia but I’m not helping my case here when I tell you my great grandfather’s speakeasy was the best damn one in New Haven. I don’t know why Italian women are just as hairy as their male counterparts but I do know that if she tells you she doesn’t have a thick mustache she’s lying. It’s not my fault we talk with our hands but maybe it is just an evolutionary adaptation from having to dodge and swat backhanded serves to the face from our short-tempered mothers.

Poetry

We don’t all have cousins named Vinny, Salvatore, and Tony, because if we did it would make it impossible to address anybody at Sunday dinners much like this one.

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The olive oil and balsamic hits the table like the final piece of a puzzle and I tuck the loose piece of hair


back behind my ear as my grandfather finishes his story that I’ve heard every Christmas since before I could even talk back, yet I still wonder how he and Pasquale didn’t get caught stealing those apples from the orchard next to their farm and how the taste of warm unpasteurized goat’s milk tasted as good as zia Marianne’s cappuccino. My grandfather looks up at me from his glass of Chianti thrice refilled so far and I see myself in his eyes but really, I mean I see myself in the reflection of his eyes and I catch myself shaking my head back and forth before cracking a smile as he raises his hands to motion towards his un-shoveled driveway that houses his snow-covered ’97 Nissan Frontier and that Ford they only manufactured for a year. Taking another sip, he scans the room filled with his children and their children before grabbing the serving spoon that only comes out of the cabinet in December and on the day Jesus was resurrected. He digs the holy spoon into the bowl of spaghetti and says, We fled that Tuscan sun for this, but it was damn worth it.

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Photography

Idea Kirsten Koedding

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Photography

Be the Light Filosmar Cordeiro


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who we are

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JOHN ACKER is an aspiring writer and poet whose work has remained relatively secretive for a majority of his writing career. This is the first major publication his work has appeared in. He started posting samples of his writing on Tumblr in 2012 and since has amassed over 35,000 followers. His literary voice has often been described as "cliche and overly romantic, but in the best way possible." His themes typically center around love, isolation, hard alcohol, sex, loss, and anything else typically overdone. He is currently in the process of completing and publishing a collection of poems. He also loves dogs.

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SOPHIA ALFIERI is a freshman Media Studies major and an Advertising and Sports Studies minor. She loves to read and write, drawing inspiration from her favorite things and her personal experiences. Sophia also enjoys photography and taking pictures of her strangely photogenic dog. She is in the 3+1 Communications program and is looking forward to graduating in 2020 and going on to (hopefully) work in New York City.

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NHUNG AN is a 19-year-old English and Journalism major from Hanoi, Vietnam. She wants to eventually become a professor or a journalist or the next president of Vietnam. She has been writing in Vietnamese her whole life and in English for the past six years. Much of Nhung’s writing is about being a woman of two countries and sometimes her pieces can be subtly or extremely gay. Nhung’s life would not be complete without her mother’s war stories, her beta fish named Sushi, and other gay women in her life.

Bios

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SAMANTHA BASHAW is a freshman Journalism major and English minor from the upper right hand corner of New York that people basically call Canada. Although she hails from a place that adores maple syrup, cold weather, and hockey season, Sam prefers to stick to chocolate, mild fall days, and professional football. She aspires to visit all seven continents and to forever write about and photograph the thing she loves most: people.

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NICOLE BURKE is from North Branford, Connecticut. She is a senior, graphic designer, artist, and she sometimes even takes nice photos. She loves to read, binge-watch Netflix, and play with dogs but she absolutely hates writing bios.

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WESLEY CLAPP is an aspiring filmmaker from New Hampshire whose interests include linguistics, binge-watching, and visual storytelling. He currently has a YouTube channel, Wesley Clapp Presents, and occasionally writes or directs for Q30's live entertainment show Quinnipiac Tonight.

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KELLY COLLINS, born and raised in Bergen County,

New Jersey, is an Advertising and Integrated Communications major and a minor in English with a creative writing track. As she is in her third year, she is excited to graduate in the fall of 2017. She is a writer, an artist, a designer, a volunteer; she is a storyteller.

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FILOSMAR CORDIERO JR, also known as Swagdingo,

is obsessed with existentialism, transcendentalism, and expressionism. His creations makes you question who you are, and what intrinsic value you represent in the beautiful chaos that is the universe. His work breeds a curiosity so profound it makes Socrates proud. He lives his life by 3 simple guidelines: Question everything you know, spread the light, and don't let others steal your inner peace.

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CAITLIN CRYAN is a sophomore, a photographer and a creative mind. You might have seen her work featured in The Chronicle, or might recognize her as the girl who is always running random events for Chartwells as their Marketing Intern. Caitlin is wicked proud to be from Central Massachusetts. She loves being an Advertising and Integrated Communications major and looks forward to persuading you to buy things you don’t really need in the future.

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SUZANNE DEWITT does not know if she is a sophomore or junior, where she wants to end up in life, or even when her real birthday is (she was adopted from China), but she does know she is a lover of puns, poetry, and raw honey. When she is not busy pursuing a degree in Behavioral Neuroscience, Suzanne resides in Newton, Massachusetts with her mother and younger sister. She hopes to one day publish something worthy of being plagiarized.

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SARAH DOIRON is a senior Journalism major from the tiniest state in the nation. She is the Editor-inChief of The Quinnipiac Chronicle, the university's student-run newspaper. Sarah loves to write and express herself in creative ways, especially by wearing fuzzy socks during all four seasons.

Bios

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KELSEY FISHER is a freshman English major aspiring to be an elementary school teacher. She is a Connecticut native that writes whatever odd lines come to mind. Her favorite works are short stories and poems, and she dabbles in art whenever she gets the chance. She can proudly rap all of Hamilton and enjoys long car-ride jam sessions that leave her without a voice.

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MADISON FRAITAG is a sophomore Film, Television and Media major who enjoys writing, drawing, painting and taking pictures of nature. Madison spends most of her time working as the Arts & Life Editor of The Chronicle, eating mozzarella cheese in all forms, and watching The Office.

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ELIZABETH FREEMAN is a sophomore Physical Therapy major with a double minor in Psychology and Entrepreneurship. She has always been interested in photography, although she has recently gotten even more into it after taking a photography course which forced her to get out of her comfort zone when taking pictures. Whenever she's not swamped with homework and tests to study for, she can be found either with her nose in a book or listening to her favorite artists on Spotify.

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MADI HAYES is an aspiring photographer and a lover of all creative endeavors. The majority of her work is inspired by culture and people of the world, in hopes it will embolden others to explore new places. Her work has been displayed in the Nancy Victor Gallery in London, England and can’t seem to let it go. She hopes to study abroad anywhere and everywhere next spring but can’t promise that she will come back. In addition to taking outlandish photographs, she is an avid comedy fan and part of Q30's QU Tonight.

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DREW JOHNSON: Journalism major whose skills crossover into other genres of writing. Lover of documentaries, history, video games, and thrilling shows such as The Walking Dead. Huge Boston sports fanatic. Opponent of both major political parties, Big Pharma, and The War on Drugs. Wants to use writing to enact social and political change. Huge rock n’ roll fan who listens to Led Zeppelin, Cage the Elephant, The Doors, The Black Keys, The Who, The Arcs, Bob Dylan, The Shelters. Friends in Massachusetts call him ‘Doob’ while fiends at QU refer to him as ‘Droogies.’

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ERIN KANE is a Psychology major, photographer, and avoids having to write whenever possible. She aspires to be a photographer for National Geographic or Sports Illustrated. She is a concert enthusiast and also wants to be a concert photographer. She is from Higganum, Connecticut and sometimes believes she was born in the wrong generation. She looks forward to the next year taking photos and making memories with The Chronicle, Montage, and members of the QU community.

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ZARA KHAN is a science student by day and artist by night. She takes pleasure in painting nature but also enjoys doodling in the margins of her notebook during three hour lectures. Zara was recognized for her artistic endeavors during her high school senior year by the General Assembly of the State of Connecticut. She resides in her cookie-cutter home in Hamden, as she studies away to pursue her dreams of becoming a psychology professor. Her artwork can be found in the Fall 2016 issue of the Arbor Vitae magazine or on QU's Facebook page.

Bios

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KIRSTEN KOEDDING is a freshman Film, Television, and Media Arts major who loves to write everything except pieces about herself (like this bio). She is a short story writer, poet, and screenwriter who delves in the realm of video production, cinematography, and editing. Her work has appeared in Montage’s zines and she looks forward to seeing her latest piece appear in this year's issue. Her work has appeared in multiple QU Tonight skits. Being in the 3+1 Communications program, she will graduate with her master’s in 2020.

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STEPHEN KROM is the super senior sent to save us all. He was raised on well water, but now drinks rum exclusively. Critics have said that his work is “good.” Stephen is okay with good. He has now consecutively placed second in both the Donald Hall Poetry Prize and The Wilder Fiction Prize here at the University. Stephen lives in Wallingford with his four best friends, where every Tuesday and Wednesday, everyone can go to the movies for five dollars.

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MARISSA LANDINO grew up in the humble town of Wallingford, Connecticut; however, if we are speaking the official language of Quinnipiac (“Jersey-speak”) then she hails from New Haven County, best-known for its sexy waterfront views and highly sought-after nightlife. When she is not listening to Beyoncé, she can be found passing time in local coffee shops. Her favorite past-times include people-watching and procrastinating. She hopes to be reincarnated as an English major.

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BEN LANZA is an emerging photographer who has an eye for the scene. One expert who is familiar with his work is quoted as saying, “I love the way he can make time stop with a photo and take the entire world in. The way he can create a memory captures the essence of why one lives.” In addition to photography, Ben enjoys running for long periods of time, swimming in cold water, and going to the dentist.

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ERIN LEDREW is a painter and portrait artist from Charlestown, New Hampshire. She got her start in first grade winning first place in the esteemed coloring contest held by her local grocery store. She has been experimenting with different mediums and subject matters ever since. She is set to graduate in 2019 with a degree in Sociology and a double minor in Spanish and Economics.

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KYLE LIANG is a poet, playwright, and fake-ass two-faced bitch according to his haters. Readers and critics have described his writing as “simply timeless” and “so Asian.” In addition to Montage, Kyle’s work has appeared in Theories of Her, Spillwords Press, and Cold Creek Review. His play Field of Trees was produced on The Barrow Group’s stage in New York City for the 2017 New Play Festival. Kyle currently lives in Wallingford, Connecticut with his four dogs, Alex, Brendan, Stephen and Jordan, and he will be graduating Physician Assistant school in 2019.

Bios

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ALEXI MANGILI is a writer of fiction and nonfiction (lab reports totally count). Montage will be the first literary journal to accept Alexi’s writing and hopefully not the last. From a small town in the smallest state, Alexi writes short stories that perpetually revolve around the constructs of gender in a self-absorbed attempt to destroy the gender binary (and not kill the grammar in the process). As an English and Biology double major and graduating senior, Alexi is continuously confused as to which subject will become a career even as the possibility of unemployment looms ahead.

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MATTHEW MATTSON is a senior Marketing major and an aspiring photographer who has spent the last four years taking photos in his free time. His dream is to become a background dancer for Lady Gaga. Matt’s work is typically displayed in most trash cans at the Quinnipiac U campus.

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JANE MCNOBLE is just an average student who enjoys writing short stories and poetry. Her ultimate procrastination skills are shining through as she rushes to finish this author biography an hour before it is due. She hopes that her lack of writing credentials serves as motivation for aspiring writers who may be hesitant to put themselves out there. If a procrastinator without a background in writing can do it, anyone can. Jane currently lives in Breezy Point, New York and will be graduating with a Health Science Studies degree in 2020.

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HECTOR OGANDO will be receiving a receipt soon for his BA in Game Design. Sent by God to bless everyone with his presence [pause for eye roll] "don't be a hater" {Hectors response to your unnecessary hate}. He is embarking on a new journey to get a job. In his free time he likes to stay in a dark room watching TV because he is not a people person <Don't ask him why> If you see him around don't approach unless you have meal plan 'cause he's always hungry.

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ROSIE PERSIANI is a sophomore whose writing is comically-spun from her own life experiences. Shel Silverstein was an early inspiration for Rosie, especially his poem, Where The Sidewalk Ends. She currently enjoys slightly less sidewalk-centered poets, like Rupi Kaur, R. H. Sin, and Tyler Knott Gregson. Rosie won an honorable mention in the 2017 Donald Hall Poetry Prize Competition.

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RICHIE PETROSINO is a freshman Interactive Digital Design major. Though he studies design, his number one hobby is photography. He uses his design and compositional skills when shooting photographs, creating a unique style. In all his work he attempts to find an emotion and bring that emotion forward with the composition. Photos which use simple elementsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; but convey big emotionsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; are his favorites, and what he attempts to create with every click. His work can also be found in The Quinnipiac Chronicle as a photographer.

Bios

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JOSEPH POWELL is a freshmen Game Design and Theater double major originally from the small rural town of Charlton, Massachusetts, otherwise known as “cow town”. Joseph Powell is a poet, actor, and professional procrastinator. His writing has been described as nothing by anybody because this is the first time anyone has read his work and the first time his work has appeared in anything. He is also an actor, appearing in the play Sloth Season on the Barrow Group’s stage in New York City for this year's New Play Festival.

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KRISTEN RIELLO is a senior Interactive Digital

Design major from Hamden, Connecticut. Her favorite forms of art are oil painting, print design, and photography. She has a love for 80s movies, pugs, windbreakers, card games, and has been known to steal a really great pen from a restaurant while paying the check. PAGE 59

JENNIFER RONDINELLI is a freshman Biomedical Sciences major and Psychology minor from Milford, Connecticut with a passion for photography and poetry. In addition to writing and photography, she enjoys sketching and making small designs in Photoshop for fun. Some of these designs she puts on RedBubble in hopes to begin paying back her student loans. You can always approach her to talk about music, video games, Marvel and DC characters, or Harry Potter.

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TRISANA SPENCE emigrated from Jamaica to the

United States at the age of six. At fourteen, she discovered a love for writing, bought a few journals and began writing daily. At 17, her writing began to thrive after writing a few short stories and poems about her exes and their hoes. Readers and critics describe Trisana’s work as “uncensored”, and “laugh-out-loud funny”. Trisana has claimed publicly that she will stop acting crazy and hacking accounts when she falls in love…

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TRISTAN SMITH is an aspiring writer and artist. He writes stories and pieces meant to display emotion to an unsuspecting audience. He takes pictures to showcase the feeling of a specific place. Tristan is currently a freshman and is he’s looking to gain a more refined edge to his artistic prowess within Quinnipiac's teachings.

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CARLY TIMPSON is a poet, writer of numerous ridiculous ramblings, and a dog lover. She is from the small coastal town of Narragansett, Rhode Island, where she lives with her parents and three siblings. Carly high jumps and throws the hammer for Quinnipiac University as well as The United States Deaf Track and Field Team. She is a sophomore studying English literature and plans to teach high school English when she graduates from the MAT program in 2019.

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Bios

AIMEE TROTTIER is a sophomore English major receiving her masters in Education. She is from Franklin, Massachusetts where she works at a bagel shop. Aimee started at Quinnipiac as a Psychology major but decided to switch to English this past fall. She took an intro poetry class and is now in an advanced poetry class. Aimee is fairly new to writing poetry, and this is her first time sharing her work. Her poems have been described as “pleasant but unexpectedly gripping.”

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JESSICA WAHL is a senior Interactive Digital Design major, English minor, and is proud to call the coastal town of Beverly, Massachusetts her home. She loves roller coasters, seeing movies multiple times in theatres, and cute plants. PAGE 33

HANNAH WOLFSON, born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, is a senior Sociology major with a passion for photography. Her desire to travel found her using photography to capture culture, beauty, and meaning in unique places.

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GIZELA ZAQUEU is a Political Science senior. Hailing from Westchester, New York. New York City serves as her backyard to fuel her creativity. She's had an on and off relationship with photography, but has realized how important of a role it has played in her life the past few years. Catch her making clapbacks to her friends at the radio station or speaking on the theory of intersectionality feminism.

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS We want to thank Rob Cottrell for allowing us to use his histological stains which transformed our approach to this year’s issue.

We want to thank Matthew Mattson, Hector Ogando, Emma Robertson, and Tristan Smith for being our Open Mic visual arts features this past year.

We want to thank Stephen Krom, Comic Sans, Ryan Ansel, Salvatore Siciliano, Gabriella Galvez and Angelique Donati, Alex Doherty, The Barnacle, and Jason Schoellkopf for being our featured Open Mic readers and performers this past year. We want to thank Jason Koo for developing countless poets and creative writers, many of them can be seen throughout this journal. We want to to Ken Cormier for his continued support and, in many ways, generation of the art and literary community on campus.

We want to thank John Acker for taking on the role of Poetry Editor and Madison Fraitag for taking on the role of Content Editor for next year.

We want to thank Erin Kane and Christina Popik for being our next Co-Editors-in-Chief. This year wouldn’t have been nearly as successful without you and we know that you will help Montage continue to grow after we leave.

Finally, we want to thank all of our members. You have helped us create a home for writers and artists here on campus, and for that, we can’t thank you enough.

Acknowledgments

We want to thank Lila Carney for her endless brilliant ideas, her comfort and support, and for keeping us sane when we had several crises over the cover design.

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Profile for Montage at Quinnipiac University

Montage 2017 Journal  

Check out the 2017 edition of Montage, the art and literary journal.

Montage 2017 Journal  

Check out the 2017 edition of Montage, the art and literary journal.

Profile for qumontage
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