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The Feminist Magazine of The University of Oregon

THE SIREN

The Love Issue


“You have to yourself befo love me or loving.�


learn to love ore you can accept my -Audre Lorde


from the editor For a while, my life has been dominated by the feeling of love. I paint my nails pink and red and purple, doodle hearts all over my notes, blush deeply and often like I’ve just had my first kiss all over again. I’ve gained deeper appreciation for the incredible amount of work and growth that I see around me. I cherish the moments of friendship I’ve shared with others. And I value myself more as well. When I came up with the Love Issue, I had it in my mind that everybody would be as happy as I am and write optimistically about the topic and would cover the love that comes from our families, friends, our animal best friends, self-love and the strength we find within ourselves. Since the Love Issue is printed during the winter, expressions of the various types of love found in the world would be a reminder to keep our heads up during a difficult time of the year where seasonal depression can happen to us. I guess in my naïveté I forgot that love can also hurt. That the phrase “love is pain” exists for a reason, and many of the contributors in this issue open up about their heartbreak in the poems, playlists, and other prose sent to us. There is a tenderness in the words and art that evokes sympathy in these moments of weakness. But we are strong, and life moves on, and it’s not wise to dwell on the love that once was because I believe love will find us again. This is also a reminder that love doesn’t exist only in romantic relationships. Love can be found in the purrs of kittens, our parent’s laughter at our not-so-funny jokes, our friendships that are based on respect and the memes they send. Love is passion for hobbies, an appreciation of ourselves and our bodies, a fondness for the foods, sights, and sounds of our culture. We are capable of giving and receiving of so much love. We all deserve it. Con amor,

Amy Garay-Azucena Siren Editor-In-Chief


contributors

Winter 2018 The Siren is published by the UO Women’s Center. We are the only student-led feminist publication on campus. It is our mission to cover contemporary feminist issues and act as an outlet for the creative and intellectual development of people of all genders.

Ashley Lindstedt Kaya Noteboom Makaal W. Brenna Fox Gabby Fahim Allison Barr Bianca Sandoval Alejandra Antonio-Trejo Audrey Welk Marley Myles Gail Karuna-Vetter Carson Scott Morgan James Meghan Jacinto Alexandra Dalton Aliana Allen-Maloney Kiva Hanson RIG Veronica Blackwell Lexy Courneya Alejandra Miranda Editor-in-Chief Amy Garay-Azucena Content Editor Mia Vicino Art Director Brooke Harman UO Women’s Center Oregon Web Press


painting by Ashley Lindstedt


table of contents Dear Hair

p. 8

A Thousand Words

p. 9

Our Love

p. 11

Collages

p. 13

A Visual Essay on Heartbreak

p. 15

this isn’t about you but it is

p. 21

Mi Hogar

p. 23

you can’t have me

p. 27

Mexico, querdio y Lindo

p. 30

Soñadora valiente

p. 32

Feminist Agenda

p.34

The Art of Self-Loving

p.36

Wannabe Peach

p.40

(cracks)

p.41

Your Mania

p.42

Playlist & Film Review

p.48

My Love

p.56

A Common Thread

p.58

Love Letter to my Stretch Marks

p.60

45


illustration by Kaya Noteboom


Dear hair, I’m sorry I flattened and straightened you To make others smile. Dear body, sorry. I saw nothing but false flaws. You deserve better. Dear self, I’m sorry. Sorry it took this long to Completely love you.

written by Makaal W.

№8


A Thousand Words anonymous

i thumb through pictures relics of the relationship that nearly broke me in two these pictures worth a thousand words all (only) the good ones these pictures say a lot about bare breasts and liquid honey running down your thighs they say it in smiles for the camera eyes wide with hope and bravery arms positioned in tender embrace they are silent to the less photogenic truths the way that love sometimes falls fast belligerent sometimes feels heavy collapsed under its own weight

they don’t shout broken mirrors on bedroom floor they don’t speak all the names you spit at me like shrapnel they don’t confess your threats to destroy yourself die by your own hands if i walked away from you they don’t dare whisper the bruises you left me with the cockeyed story spilled from your lips they don’t tell tale of the door, barricaded by your body keeping me buried in reproach


they don’t spill your relapse secrets or the seething insecurity that drove you to unhinged depths of deception prying through years of my history as if they were yours

they leave out the part about how it wasn’t enough how you called this wildfire love how it burned everything it touched

these pictures are schizophrenic capturing the most beautiful alluring moments of the worst time of my life if i look at them long enough squint my eyes the damage gets blurry they are not a lie not exactly they are the half truths we told ourselves to stay the part of you and i that hoped that tried that gave it our all

№ 10


Our Love written by Gabby Fahim

I woke up this morning saddened by your absence. I didn’t wake up to your eyelashes brushing my cheeks, or your soft lips gently kissing my forehead. On my way to class, I saw three different dogs I would have usually pointed out to you. I passed our favorite place to eat and the tree where we had our first kiss. I’m usually so scared to display public displays of affection. You’re so comfortable in your own skin and you openly embrace your lesbian identity with such boldness. I admire your pride. I let go of your hand when we pass large groups of people, fearful that they will invalidate or judge our love. Sometimes, we hide our interlocked hands in the deep pockets of one of your coats. Through this, I find comfort, feeling your fingers stroking my hand in order to soothe me when we are in public. I pass the Bijou, where we watch independent films that we never seem to understand. Regardless, we go all the time because the popcorn is fantastic (I always end up finishing it). My favorite thing about our movie dates is the ambience. We snuggle up against each other, and whisper soft “I love yous” throughout the whole movie. I love the darkness of the theatre and the sense of anonymity within the room. Sometimes I find myself struggling to pay attention to the film’s plot because the reflection of the moving screen hitting your face enchants me.


I love our friendship. Strangers often assume we are just friends, or even sisters. You hate the fact that people think we are sisters. You hate it even more when I go along with it. I find it humorous. Regardless of what others may assume, we know what we have, and it is very real. You remind me what love is every day. My last relationship made me forget. You helped me remember. You restored my hope for love. You enhanced my perception of what love should look like, and how it should play out.

special occasion. My favorite part about our dates was your reaction when I would ask you to dinner or a movie. You’d smile so widely and genuinely, as if I’d just asked for your hand in marriage. Your enthusiasm for life and curiosity about the world created a sense of easiness and security within my constantly buzzing brain of turmoil. You kept me grounded. Life got in the way of our love. Our love never got in the way of our lives.

When we broke up, I broke down. My hands were shaking, my body started aching and my head began spinning. I watched you walk away with the love I’d been waiting for my whole life. That night, I resented you. I resented your fluttery eyelashes and your sweet voice because they became a mere illusion in my mind. I wanted your comfort, your soft “I love yous” and your passionate goodbye kisses. I wanted to text you and ask if we could go to dinner at the fondue place. I wanted to see you in that gray sweater dress that I love. The restaurant’s dim lighting always complimented your makeup so well. I never wear makeup, or dress up in general. Regardless, you dressed up for me on almost every single date, treating each one as a

№ 12


collages by Brenna Fox

â„– 14


A Visual Essay of Heartbreak photographed by Allison Barr


â„– 16


this isn’t about you but it is written by Bianca Sandoval

I dreamt about you I remember the lines of your face perfectly In it, you embraced me tight And I felt whole again What a tragedy What a delusion I gave my tears My blood My time For whispered words that weren’t mine to keep In my dream, You were the perfect man The man that touched my face so tender Like it was made of glass I was made of glass I was made of everything you wanted me to be I cut my hair I cut my body

Until it made you stay I cut my laugh I cut my voice I cut my pride It never made a difference Dark circles form under my eyes As you sleep with her She watches you in the moonlight Like I did Will she be the next to cut herself away? Pieces and shavings of my myself on the floor I pick it up And mend myself without you I always was without you


illustration by Marley Miles @missmarley_art

â„– 22


Mi hogar escrito por Alejandra Antonio-Trejo Extraño los gritos por la mañana Mi perro ladrando Eso es música para mis oídos El olor de la comida que mi mamá cocina Hasta los chiles asados en el sartén La comida auténtica La música mexicana por la mañana Aunque sé que era un signo para limpiar Y bailar con mi mamá cuando escuchaba su canción favorita La tele prendida Novelas, noticias, música Los colores brillantes de mi casa Quién iba a saber que todo esto iba a extrañar Pero uno no lo sabe hasta que ya no lo tiene Mi hogar es donde está mi familia.


Fotografias viejas escrito por Alejandra Antonio-Trejo Me encuentras mirando fotos De mi niñez y de la tuya Quizás te enojas porque me llevo mis favoritas Pero solo lo hago porque te extraño Los momentos inesperados Son memorias que nunca quiero olvidar Esas fotos representan Cuando la vida era más fácil Cuando mi trabajo era disfrutar mi niñez Me fascina mirar que cada año que pasa Me veo más como tú Mamá

№ 24


“I draw a lot of female nude forms, and I’ve been asking myself why I do this, and why the act feels good - almost therapeutic. I realized that drawing forms and shapes and bodies that I, too, inhabit is a form of reclamation and celebration of my body as a woman, and of others who inhabit these forms too. Living in a society that polices women’s bodies and constantly tells us that we don’t have rights to our bodies, it begins to feel like your body is no longer yours and maybe never even was to begin with.


paintings by Ashley Lindstedt

I realized my work is a process and labor of love - self love, love of women as strong and magically resilient humans, and finding community in this.�

â„– 26


you can’t have me written by Audrey Welk

i saw a picture of him with another girl this morning. stupid snapchat—i can delete him from the app, from my life, but he still manages to seep through his friends’ stories and land on my phone for my tired eyes to see. i can remember when my blue eyes were the only thing he wanted to look at. but he didn’t see them, not the way i had thought he had, he would, he wanted to. he didn’t want to. he once chose a song for me: “green eyes” by coldplay. it stumped me, at the time, how easy it is for some people to mistake the ocean for rolling hills and forests of emerald. i thought it would hurt, this picture, the only clear vision, of brown-red hair that could only belong to another girl.


so, i did the first thing i could think of that might turn off the pain: i stomped on my heart, the way you would a balloon that just won’t pop under pressure. and still, my heart said, “no, love. he is nothing, and that’s all he should ever be to you.” now, i know things don’t work that way. it’s not that easy. i’m smarter now. i know, well, i guess a needle would do the trick. i could very well let my heart burst and pour out all over the concrete floor. but i don’t think i want to hurt from this anymore. my heart has had enough. i miss what we were, though for only two months. it felt like an eternity to a young, naïve girl. i miss the way we had loved. we were in love, were we not? i have one more thing to say, and this i can say honestly: i don’t want to be her. what i wanted was to be me with him. and those, why, those are two completely different things.

№ 28


MĂŠxico, lindo y querido


photographed by Alejandra Miranda


SoĂąadora valiente written by Alejandra Miranda Para mi madre querida. Gracias por ser mi inspiraciĂłn. Te amo y aprecio.


They wanted to SILENCE her.

Querían CALLARLA.

They wanted to KILL her.

Querían MATARLA.

No. No, no mientras había dolor.

No, not while there was pain.

No, no mientras había vida.

No, not while there was life.

No, no mientras el abuso constante de un “hombre” poco “hombre.” No, not while the constant abuse from a “man,” “little man.” No, no mientras había aliento. No, not while there was breath. Inmarcesible. Unfading. Fuerte. Strong. Con todo. With everything. Sin nada. With nothing. Indocumentada. Undocumented. Sin familia. With no family. Abusada. Abused.

Para mí.

Sin nada. Con todo.

Para un futuro mejor.

For me. For a better future.

Soñadora valiente.

Brave dreamer.

Sí. Sí, sí mientras había vida. Sí, sí mientras había aliento.

Yes, yes while there was life. Yes, yes while there was breath.

Por una voz.

For a voice.

Por una vida.

For a life.

Por una esperanza.

For hope.


Feminist Agenda: A Collective Practice of Love written by Social Sciences Feminist Network Research Interest Group/The RIG/Feminist Agenda The Feminist Agenda is a fem- come from overlapping and shiftinist centered research inter- ing friend groups, but have beest group (RIG) turned every- come our own specific collectivity. day collective practice of love. The magic of technology sustains I came to the RIG as I first be- us as we practice love through gan seriously investing time in our What’s App chat. The chat the scholarly pursuit of feminist began on March 13, 2017. “Dan knowledge and knowledge of Fielding created group ‘Rig.’” feminisms. Certainly, I had landed It’s unclear from our first mesin a space that cultivated a femi- sages why we even created the nist research ethic. The RIG soon group other than to just joke turned into something more than a around and ask questions and talk shared research interest for me, it about upcoming events. It’s bebecame a safe haven in an academ- come something more than that. ic world that does not prioritize feminist ideology or perspective. The group chat has played the role of child care scheduling, social In the RIG love is something we planning, advice for each other as do. We perform love for one an- teachers and graduate students, other. Not performance as in fake; bearing witness to emotional performance as in thoughtful, trauma, and offering support in purposeful, deliberate acts of care crisis. The chat is a place that that stem from a sense of mutu- we offer a genuine sharing of love al belonging and mutual depen- for one another on a daily basis. dency and mutual concern. We


Names of the chat (not an exhaustive list): Rig Feminist Agenda Good Morning Andi Brow Chicka Brow Wow Miss You Larissa Monochrome No Pants Dance Party Love You Funeral Potatoes Collective Love Practice

Our collective research and writing is part of our Feminist Agenda, but it is also a freely given labor of passion and love that stretches far beyond. We came together over these shared interests, to research and write; but in this group, I feel like we truly share struggles and solutions. We actually show up for each other. We grow in such unexpected ways together. We practice love collectively. We connect lovingly through group messages, we share pain and joy together, and we hold each other when any sensation reaches peak intensity.

â„– 34


The Art of Self Loving What does it mean to love yourself? Is it a selfish act, evidence you are self-absorbed? Or does it reflect selfcare, working toward personal development and actualization? I’m of the opinion that loving oneself is an act of profound self-respect, and is, in a very real sense, an essential part of living a healthy life. So why is it such a struggle for so many of us to take basic care of ourselves? I believe the answer lies in a misplaced sense of responsibility.

self-care in these instances, but your outcomes might feel equally dire.

Many human beings need touch and sexual expression. These things may look different to different people, but the underlying needs are the same. Maybe your need for touch is met when you hold a friend’s hand or play sports. Receiving touch requires interacting with another person, but sex does not. Whether or not it is your preference, your need for sexual There is profound wisdom in the talk expression can be met all by yourself. you get at the start of a plane flight. The attendant reminds passengers Some traditions frown on masturbathat if the oxygen masks deploy tion, seeing it as “abuse” or “perduring the flight, they must be sure to version.” You may have heard some secure their own mask before turning confusing things about masturbation to help others. This is clearly neces- that imply it is somehow dangerous. sary when the issue is having enough Don’t worry; it’s not! If you come oxygen to breathe! If you don’t take from a very conservative spiritual care of yourself first, you’ll pass out path, your beliefs may prevent you before you can help anyone else. But from exploring yourself sexually. Forthe advice holds true even when it tunately, loving yourself can include isn’t a life-or-death situation. When many behaviors that are not overtly we practice self-love, we ensure that sexual in nature. For example, taking our own needs are met before we look a hot bath or soaking in a hot tub can to meet the needs of others. You may be a form of self-love. Scheduling a not literally pass out if you don’t do professional massage can meet your


need for human touch without any sexual pressure. Self-massage, for example hugging yourself or rubbing scented oil into your own hands, can also be pleasant and soothing without being sexual. But there are so many other ways to love yourself! Meeting your own needs requires some effort. You’ll need to pay attention to things like meals, exercise, and even drinking water. By choosing to care for your body’s needs, you are practicing self-love. Knowing what you like and what you don’t like, what we refer to as having “good boundaries,” is another way of caring for yourself. If you take the time to really understand what you want from engaging with others before you spend time with them, you will be less likely to find yourself saying “yes” when you want to say “no.” Active consent is behavior that looks for the “oh, yeah!” in every encounter. If only one of you is “oh, yeah!” then there is no consent. Everything that is not “oh, yeah!” is “no,” even if someone ends up disappointed, and even if that someone is you. Respecting your own boundaries and the boundaries of others is one of the very best ways to show love for yourself.

by Gail Karuna-Vetter

So get out there and start practicing some self-loving!

Sex Educator at As You Like It; The Pleasure Shop.

№ 36


photographed by Carson Scott

â„– 38


Wannabe Peach written by Morgan James

Apricots The ugly cousin to the peach Peaches plumped with nectared juices Perfectly round and covered with soft skin Often a term of endearment I want to be a peach Yet I find myself an apricot A wannabe peach A fine fruit on its own But not a first thought A secondary to its neighbor An unsure peach I am Apprehensive of the space I inhabit Anxious to the awaiting world Awkward in appearance NaĂŻve when compared to my worldly brother But that does not make my flesh any less sweet that does not make my insides any less lovely I am a wannabe peach But a content apricot


(cracks)

written by Mehgan Jacinto Do not hide from the truth People will use your sweetness, your heart of gold, for their own selfish use. This will hurt, but wounds heal. You will learn who to give your delicate heart to. They will cherish it, and sew up the cracks. Do not hide from the truth love will hurt, but light will prevail too.

â„– 42


Your Mania

written by Alexandra Dalton The way I feel for you can only be described as mania. It holds me so tightly I can’t breathe, but I feel so secure in its grasp I don’t even question it. This love is a train going full speed with no direction and no intention of slowing down, plowing over every frivolous thing in its path. It is a dangerous cocktail of sedatives and sweet talk, followed by a spiritual slumber I never asked for, but that makes my risen state appear inferior. I vibrate with anticipation of your next

validation of me, silently praying the previous wasn’t your last. Because to live without your obsession is to wander back into a time where I did not see the garden growing within me. A time where I saw a lonely fat girl and not a complex grown woman, and I’d rather be blind than live without your vision of me. Your mania is one I can no longer live without because a passionless life is one I now associate only with torture.


art by Aliana Allen-Maloney

â„– 44


A Lovely Predicament Named Katie written by Alexandra Dalton There is a woman in my bed. She smells like lavender and she told me I’m beautiful and she is locking eyes with me the same way you did when you first asked to kiss me in your stairwell. She laughs at my jokes but I’m curious if you’d even chuckle. You’d probably give me a confused stare followed by an eclipsing silence. The woman in my bed tells me she’s never been with someone like me, and how much she’s been anticipating the day her fantasies come into fruition. It reminds me of the first time you made me orgasm with your hands, and how it felt like my whole life had been leading to that illuminating experience. She shuffles her weight so that she is nearly touching me. My heartbeat accelerates far past a healthy pace, but for all the wrong reasons. Although I am no longer confined by your grasp, I feel more chained to you than I did in the many months preceding our parting. I know if her soft lips even graze my own it will all be over. I will have turned away from all of our future plans with beautiful puppy children and luxurious vacations. The dilemma that faces me, if acted upon, would trudge through all those dreams as if it were a mere block in my path and not my whole future.


I lean in and kiss the stranger. And I feel everything…the last time I stared deeply into your hazel eyes, the way you cried when I broke your heart, the biting words you slung at me afterward, every embrace and every tear. I finally feel freedom, and I cling to every moment of the relief flooding over me. It’s over. We’re over. The woman gets out of my bed to freshen up and I retreat back into the safety of my pillows, awaiting the moment we touch again and I can sneak another glimpse of us.


GIVE ME BACK MY OLD T-SHIRT: A BREAK-UP PLAYLIST written by Mia Vicino 10 songs to help you survive the many stages of heartbreak — from grief to regret to fury to bitterness to pretend acceptance to actual acceptance to THRIVING YET AGAIN. New York - St. Vincent Summer In The City - Regina Spektor Better Than That - Cyberbully Mom Club Fine Without You - Best Coast You’re Not The One - Sky Ferreira Patches - Jawbreaker Reunion Harvard - Diet Cig Hard Feelings/Loveless - Lorde Better Off Without You - Summer Camp So What - P!nk


Film Reveiw written by Mia Vicino

COLUMBUS (USA, 2017, dir. Kogonada) Columbus brilliantly captures the subtle moments of day-to-day life, but somehow this film is anything but mundane. There were many different themes crammed in (architecture, family, career goals, nurture, loneliness, the fear of moving, etc.) and they all flowed together beautifully, in part thanks to the skillful composition of each and every shot. Out of all these themes, the one that sticks out the most is passion. Casey (Haley Lu Richardson) is a 20-year-old girl who is wildly passionate about architecture. She takes architecture tours of her hometown, Columbus, & attends lectures & studies despite not being enrolled in college & is so eager to share her love of this medium that she does so with a 30-something Korean stranger, Jin (John Cho), whose ailing father happens to be a renowned architecture professor. This leads to a relationship built on passion, something Casey has in spades yet Jin lacks. Passion is my favorite word and passionate is my favorite trait. Watching someone talk about their passion, seeing their body language become more animated, hearing their words quicken and come out disorganized yet coherent is part of what makes human life so beguiling. Left in the hands of a less talented writer, Casey’s passion for architecture could’ve easily caused her to become an embodiment of the manic pixie dream girl trope. However, she is given so much respect and agency and screen time, as well as a compelling character arc, that one could argue that she is actually the protagonist, despite what the IMDb synopsis implies. Lastly, Columbus is also the debut (!!) film of Korean writer-director Kogonada, so please support it if you can -- diverse voices in film are increasingly vital!

â„– 48


photographed by Aliana Allen-Maloney

â„– 50


photographed by Aliana Allen-Maloney

photographed by Aliana Allen-Maloney


photographed by Veronica Blackwell

â„– 54


My Love

Anonymous

You came into my life with all your fur and little grey stripes pink nose and whiskers out right. My Love, my partner, my little white knight there to console me when things weren’t right. When silent tears slid down my cheeks you were there with a purr and a comforting greet. You were always at my side for the good, the bad, the lonely and the sad, My Love, you were the most amazing creature I will ever have. And then, It was your turn to cry and when I looked into your knowing eyes i knew, i unselfishly had to say goodbye. My heart was shattered into a constellation of pieces, My Love for you never ceases. A decade of pure, innocent love you gave me It was You, My Love, that saved Me.


Love

Anonymous

I never thought I would be a parent. The thought of another being’s life completely depending on me was horrific. My world was madness and chaos, a never-ending stream of uncertainty. Danger waited in every breath I took, every corner I turned…my mind lost inside itself for what seemed like an eternity. When I found out I was pregnant I burst into tears and ran out of the strange smelling room. It reminded me of vodka, but I knew it was rubbing alcohol. The white square building, full of white coated individ-

uals loomed in front of me as I stood in the street, fear enveloping me like a dark fog, the rain soaking me to the bone. Someone told me how wonderful it would be, they spoke of a magical type of love only granted between a parent and child. I scoffed, they didn’t know me. I had heard the word love plenty of times, but it was rarely accompanied by anything pleasant. I sat in bed, the back seat of a broken down car. It was a step up from where I’d been, but shit, where would I put the baby rocker?

Some days I reminisce about the old times. I look at the world, so many people, so many walks of life, and I wonder how it is we end up where we do. They were right you know…that love, it’s indescribable, unsurmountable, and incomparable. His name is Aiden, and he’s almost six years old. We’ve been through it, my little guy and me. From hell and back we’ve traveled. What is love? It’s his smiling blue eyes, it’s pain, and sorrow, and joy and, hope. It’s someone worth fighting for. Love encompasses all the good and bad life has to offer, and true love never dies. My love is my son, and I’ll be there for him until the end of time.

№ 56


A Common Thread writings on love

written by Amy Garay-Azucena

Un sillón para mi mamá (or A Chair for My Mother) Vera Williams

A tender kid’s book about a small family who lost everything in a fire – and a little girl’s determination to help out her mother and grandmother save up to buy a new comfy chair to make their home feel like home again.

This Is How You Lose Her – Junot Diaz

This collection of short stories by Dominican writer Diaz explores romantic relationships and infidelity. Yunior, the link between all the short stories, struggles to understand how to establish lasting, fulfilling relationships while overcoming his cultural Dominican ‘training’ that sees women as secondary characters. The collection of stories also touches on other kinds of love – maternal and brotherly, like in “The Pura Principle,” and the strains of immigrants in a new country trying to adapt to a new home, while missing the familiarity of their true homes as seen in “Invierno.”

Lucky Boy – Shanthi Sekaran

When an affluent Indian couple in Berkeley struggle to conceive a child, they try to adopt a child that has been placed in foster care after his mother is detained by immigration officials. They find themselves in a legal fight to keep the little boy they have fallen in love with, while realizing that that at any moment they may lose their case and thus lose the boy. Soli, the young undocumented biological mother of the boy, finds herself in immigrant detention where she suffers abuse and isolation, but keeps herself sane by thinking of her reunion with her son. It’s a story of two mothers bound by their love for the little boy.


Like Water for Chocolate – Laura Esquivel

Tita is the youngest daughter of Mama Elena, whose forbids Tita to ever marry. Despite this strict rule, Tita falls in love and the passion between her and her lover, Pedro, only grows despite the many thorns that try to come between them. It uses food as a major theme and power of Tita’s, whose emotions seep into the food she prepares and creates a sense of magical realism in the book. She and the rest of her family defy the patriarchal expectations of women during the Mexican Revolution, in which this book is set.

This Bridge Called My Back – Cherrie Moraga and Gloria Anzaldúa

A feminist anthology of the experiences of women of color that discusses intersectionality and challenges white feminism. The anthology includes perspectives of race, class, sexuality, and feminism from several contributors of different backgrounds. It touches on the struggles Women of Color face in the U.S. and globally. ww

And the Mountains Echoed – Khaled Hosseini

Love and pain are primary themes in Hosseini’s collection of interlinked stories. It begins with the tear-jerking separation of siblings and follows them throughout the book to their heartbreaking reunion. It touches on the taboo of closeted LGBTQ+ love in 1970s Afghanistan. It touches on jealousy and guilt that drives people to do terrible things to the people they love, and the redemption they go through to try to reconcile.

№ 58


A love letter to my stretch marks written by Kiva Hanson Hello little lines You’ve been here for a while I’m sorry I’ve never said anything nice to you And I’m tired of hating you A little boy saw you while I was playing He thought you were the most amazing things in the world Lightning strikes across my stomach Storms rolling across my skin I have always kept you hidden Kept you a secret Because you were a sign of imperfection A sign of unwanted growth You’re here because I have grown and changed I am better I am wiser I am different than I used to be You, little stretch marks Little purple lines stretching across my thighs You are the only proof I hold with me that I Am no longer the same

I let your storms ravage my skin, my mind I have learned you are not in control of me You are my storm My energy, my change, my growth I am the storm you are made from So I refuse to hate you I refuse to hide you I refuse to do anything but celebrate you Flaunt you Because you are wind and rain and pain Lots and lots of pain That has been overcome That I have learned to love I love you little purple lines Rising and climbing across my body Because storms are beautiful And you are the signs of my storm


cash or credit

written by Lexy Courneya

to him replying with i love you is like paying with credit when he only accepts cash. he demands tangible compensation. he desires golden dollars– shiny girls whom he can touch and feel and use. he wants to hold their faces in his greedy palms and say with covetous eyes you are mine.

â„– 60


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The Love Issue  

Artwork by Ashley Lindstedt featuring nude illustrations have been censored by the Editor to abide with rules for publication by Issuu. We d...

The Love Issue  

Artwork by Ashley Lindstedt featuring nude illustrations have been censored by the Editor to abide with rules for publication by Issuu. We d...

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