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T H E V E G L I T E R A R Y MAGAZINE winter 2017

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poetry

I tend to lie a lot

Olivia Maccioni

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Evergreens

Alison Henderson

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!!!

Emma Ciereszyński

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lemongrass

Emma Ciereszyński

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¡Socorro!

Sean Sokolov

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Mars

Gia Grillo

19

Bus Ride

Selena Mae

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Love handles

Selena Mae

23

12.13.97

Adam Eldred

25

The Streak

Max Binks-Collier

29

Kundalini Strand

MW Jaeggle

31

Death in Vivid Violet

Madison Duenkler

32

A Picture to Explain Everything

Alexia Avina

37

Butterflies

Alexia Avina

39

Emily Szpiro

9

Selena Mae

24

Annie Boisvert

26

Chloe Grant

34

prose

Stranding Genetics The Kid Finds the Rot TIED art

Kane, Darby & the Nyepi Crew on Planet Earth

Mikaela Kautzky

Front Cover

Harpa Hexagons

Marie Labrosse

Inside Cover

Wing

Alexia Avina

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Two Nymphs

Jim Ross

8

Viennese Abyss

Marie Labrosse

11

Buddy Takes His Last Breath in Alex’s Arms

Jim Ross

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Rain in Comboyne with the Cameron-Turners Kids

Mikaela Kautzky

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The Day We Met Ellen

Mikaela Kautzky

20

Fiona and Lila

Zaidie Cooper

22

Cloud Gate

Ariel Pickett

28

First Morning in Raglan

Mikaela Kautzky

30

Untitled

Eléa Regembal

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Break Up in Bangkok

Mikaela Kautzky

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the veg literary magazine winter 2017 vol. 13 #2

The Veg Literary Magazine is funded by the Arts Undergraduate Society (AUS) of McGill University. The content of this publication does not necessarily represent the views of the AUS or McGill University. internet veg.magazine@gmail.com twitter.com/veg_mag facebook.com/thevegmagazine thevegmagazine.tumblr.com printing by

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Spring Reader, The nights are becoming bluer and bluer as March turns to April turns to May. We cast this net in your direction, blindly and perhaps foolishly, in some hope to be smarter or feel safer in your palms. We see in this world a growing seepage of confusion, of hate, and perhaps in its wake, of productive words. Inside our issue, you will find containers. Vials, capsules, pearly envelopes and deep twin basins pushing saltwater pools back and forth. In these words + images we editors found something special and powerful, a tiny hint at the world around us, or perhaps just something profoundly sticky. If your tomatoes have all gone soft, yet remain neither sour nor sweet, and if you might wash them off slowly beside us, we might be cleaner and softer too. In parallel and without physical touch, artworks born again on these pages might unite us all in a moment of recognition. Abreast in different cities, neighborhoods, experiences, let us and all our other readers look you in the eye and, in the best way we know how, stand beside you and support you. Emily M. + The Veg Editorial Team.

The Editors Zoe Quinn Shaw Maia Klee Emily Hoppe Alex Keys Sam Kessler Emily Mernin Joe Mulholland Mark Weissfelner

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Alexia Avina Wing black and white 35mm film

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I tend to lie a lot Both in terms of laying my body on surfaces I find relatively appealing and in terms of telling people things that aren’t true. But one time I didn’t lie. And that time I told you that I served Barbara Walters a gazpacho when the sun was bleeding too early for an evening late last July.

5 Olivia Maccioni

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Evergreens I stood naked in the shallow water, my feet rooted beneath the stones. Gold ribbons of light chased the sun across the lake towards the Orford Mountains. I was six, and Katie was four. She sat on shore next to the wild mint and quietly contemplated the ribbons too. Tiny stalactites hung from her bright red hair; dried clay clung to her freckled skin. Mom sat on the stone wall behind her and crossed her arms as if to guard her long shadow against the setting sun. She always wore her black bathing suit but never came into the water. The industrial moan of the highway gave way to an impish plea beneath my feet. I squatted down to listen, and burrowed my hands into the lakebed to liberate it, the soft clay between my fingers was familiar, the stuff of mud pies. I painted my body with the muddy stew; from my thighs to my stomach, towards my shoulders and up to my neck. Its deep earthy stench rolled over my chin and into my nostrils. Good enough to eat, I thought. “Don’t!” Mom regained her balance from a stubborn stone.

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“It smells like it tastes good!” I yelled across the water. I reached down under the water for some lipstick and blush. I needed a mask. I plastered my eyes and ears and yellow hair. When my armour was thick enough, I waddled onto shore to beach-harden like an oyster. A shallow moat around my body dyed the white sand grey. A wild zephyr whispered to the soles of my feet. I inhaled it and tasted the stale heat from that tiny desert. But, my arms began to itch under my dusty shell. I tightened my body and clenched my fists. I endured it as long as I could.

7

Unbearable! I leapt into the air like a captured marlin, landed on hot coals and danced the Hopak. I clawed at my thighs and howled with delight to the evergreens. Katie studied me with her swampy-green eyes. “Alright Alison, it’s time to go in,” Mom hoisted herself off her perch. I darted back into the water like a basilisk lizard and gyrated beneath the surface to watch my freedom settle on the lakebed.

Alison Henderson

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Jim Ross Two Nymphs digital

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Stranding His mother, who left him when he was too young to recall her face clearly, was a great whale of a woman. He described her like this not to be vengeful, nor to ridicule the fat that she so diligently forged like armour, but rather because the only thing he could distinctly remember about her was the feeling he had when she held him. He said: the blue whale has arteries so large a child can swim through them, and this was the feeing he had when she held him in her great, billowy width. It was a pleasant feeling – it was why he held May like this, in his arms. “You remind me of still water,” he said, and May lay there wondering if this meant she was transparent or reflective. She tried to think of what an undisturbed body of water looked like, but her mind – which was always anchored by a sense of pragmatism – failed to conjure such an image. Water was never still anyway, she reasoned. “She never let anyone take photos of her after she got married. The only photo I found was of her in university, back when she was skinnier than you.” The small photo, which was cheaply framed and positioned near his bed, was indeed of his mother, though she was younger in the photo than he believed. She stood permanently unmoved with her hand shielding the sun, preserved in a blue summer dress that clung to a small, lithe body. Her face was obscured by a shadow, but had it not been, he would have seen that the shape of her lips and the colour of her eyes were the same as his. “Where’s your mother now?” May asked. Something frustrated and weary came to his voice. “Does it matter where she goes?” “I guess not. I wouldn’t know.” No, May wouldn’t know. May didn’t know where mothers went at all. To her, mothers were like whales. She knew they were out there somewhere, existing, but she had never seen one. Not hers, at least. In reality, mothers are not like whales. This is an absurd thought, for we know much more about whales than we do mothers. We know how many bones are in the average whale, how they digest their food, how they make their melancholy songs echo through oceans. We do not, however, know why mothers will die for children and leave them too, sometimes at once. This seems counterintuitive to everything we know. May would never be a mother, and so she never figured out where mothers went. Sometimes she thought that perhaps she’d found her, but people always think they see incredible things in the sea when all the water offers is driftwood. He talked more, his mouth close to her ear. Men often talked to May like this, as if her bed were a confessional. In the diaphanous folds of the pale blue sheets,

9

>>>

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May listened to him with the devout, expressionless face of a priest, passing none of God’s judgement and showing none of his mercy. And yet, as he spoke, she thought of nothing but water. Not still water, but moving, and she was moving through it, swimming in arteries filled with the sea. She imagined a woman in a blue dress and saw the dress expand and engulf the slender frame, and May reached out to her. When he whispered in her ear that his father only stopped screaming at his mother when she became a whale, May opened her eyes and said: “Water can never be still.” He stopped talking and offended silence ensued. “Water in a glass is still.” But I am a body of water, May thought. We know this about our anatomy. The two said nothing, and May felt something desperate and dying within her want to cling to this boy. She felt a fervent need to send him adrift, too. “Stay if you want,” she finally said. “You can go.” May closes her eyes, which are grey, devoid of colour, touched by a prophetic light. She is the age that one feels for a long time. Like the flash of silver fins in deep, deep water, she remembers something about the way her mother sang. May hears it through oceans.

Emily Szpiro

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Marie Labrosse Viennese Abyss digital

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!!! Young women bathed in battery acid — smothered in ethanol, we tumble downwar ds and make the night our friend. Hips swing in purgatory between rosy eyes and flurries of feet,

knowing hands grip and twist and glide and stretch the spine to get faces to glow, Rise impulse—we yield to the exultation

Emma Ciereszyński

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lemongrass Fille de citronnelle—her
 glacier hips, striations streaking across and down,
 flushed fingertips ghosting gently over them. Pale moths land
 on thighs. Snarly hair dissolves
 into thick honey as sunshine
 kisses,
 caresses
 it.
 Her skin sweats sugar, but lemongrass girl melts on your tongue like salt.

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Emma Ciereszyński

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Jim Ross Buddy takes his last breaths in Alex’s arms digital

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¡SOCORRO! Inspired by the poem of the same name by Nicanor Parra 1. I don’t know how I wound up here. A friend of mine found my address and wrote to me, speaking of the story which he had recently composed for a contest held by the literary magazine of the university at which he was on exchange. It was easy, he told me, I sat down by the window, an open window, and looked out over the city and watched as it flew over the rooftops and the balconies and landed in the inkwell of my pen. When I finished reading the letter I folded it back up in the envelope and put it in the stack of papers on the corner of my kitchen table, hoping to forget about it. 2. There was a day last summer I went to a Tesco and got a ham and swiss sandwich with pickles, mustard, and buttered whole grain bread and a few beers and I sat in the park till it was dark and I ate and I drank and I read a book of Nicanor Parra poems, but mostly I watched the students of the university walk by in two’s or three’s or on their own. And I was running and happy and content, though I thought myself the antithesis of it at the time.

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3. I got a phone call from her last night. I remember fidgeting with my hat in my right hand. I asked her if the book I had sent her in the mail had arrived yet and she told me yes and she had read it. He’s still alive you know, I said, the poet. He must be more than a hundred, she said. Yes, I said, he’s a hundred and two. I wonder what he’s up to now, she said. Still writing I hope. Probably nothing good at his age, she said. No, I said, probably nothing good. 4. I stumbled into a bar, on some unnamed, or unknown street off Corso Buenos Aires, chasing after a phosphorescent butterfly. I ended up talking to a boy (or maybe a man?) of 22. He frequented the brothels of the city and quoted the love poems of Pablo Neruda. I did not understand, as I did not speak Spanish at the time.

>>>

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5. In my dreams the girl wears a white t-shirt and black wool pants and a smile, though whenever she thinks no one is looking this is not the case. I dream of her often, she who drove me wild with joy, and I dream of her mostly in the arms of others, though sometimes in my own. I hear she has grown out her hair but when I catch glimpses of her at night it is still short as it was when we knew each other. A few weeks ago I picked up a piece of paper with a fragment of a poem off the ground, something like: “I had not considered the merits of prayer, until/while at the corner of Dupont and Ossington /I realized there would come a time/when I would hold her no longer”. I quickly threw it away but my nose had already started to bleed and I tilted my head back because someone told me to do that once, but the blood ran down the back of my throat and I coughed, staining my shirt. 6. I got a phone call from her last night. We talked for a while but then the phone died and I walked to a Bell telephone booth off that path in parc Jean Mance, with its strange yellow light in the snow, drawing me in like a moth. I called her back, but she did not answer. I put the phone down and suddenly I tripped, tumbling into the snow. 7. I have not developed the photographs I took of her the summer of 2015. There was a full canister and I told myself I would get around to developing it. My relationship to film has never been a fruitful one. I sat in the garden of my parents’ house contemplating it. Years later it occurred to me that I don’t know what happened to the garden. 8. I looked around me and found that the landscape changed completely. I can imagine it in the 40’s I said. It must have been just the same, when this was the quarter of the Jews and the Italians and the factory workers, just the same, I said, and you nodded, uninterested. 9. I can never get my tenses right, or at least consistent. I look out over the city. My mouth and nose are bleeding.

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10. Really, I don’t know what happened. 11. According to someone named Octavio Paz, the Poet Roberto Caeiro, as opposed to the Man Fernando Pessoa, believed that all things did nothing more than exist, and we have no right to ask them to do anything more than that. If this is the case save me once and for all, for I cannot save myself 12. At the end of December, I found myself walking for hours in no direction. I waited for the Place to materialize but it didn’t, as it never does. I think if it had been me lying in a Chilean hospital in 1973, I would have pleaded with the doctors, saying let me live, or shoot me in the back of the neck, and let me die.

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Sean Sokolov

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Mikaela Kautzky Rain in Comboyne with the Cameron-Turners’ Kids Pentax k1000

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Mars You went there, you said, on a trip with your father. A world like a British beach. Not terrible. Not wonderful. Rocky. Uncomfortable. The grit of the sand too great. You stayed though the food was bad. Did your father agree? Sitting across from you in the only restaurant as the whirlwind outside scooped the red sand threw it into a red sky and remained indifferent. Your meal indifferent.

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When you came back there were banners, parades. They all asked you about the trip. You joked about the food. Your father’s only comment about how strange it was to see Phobos so low in the sky hanging like swollen fruit. He wanted to reach up and take it in his hand. The reporters didn’t understand. How could they?

Gia Grillo

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Mikaela Kautzky The Day We Met Ellen Pentax k1000

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Bus Ride I jumped from bed to bed but the only gold coins I collected dripped down my chin, into my pockets and into the bus driver’s hand like, “please, man... I’ve been everywhere tonight... I’m just trying to find my way home, you see and I’ve been clicking my heels but the souls just keep falling out of ‘em. My guard dogs have turned on me and I’m being walked to the edge wearing a barbed wire collar that feels a lot like his hands, but man, I gave in— you must’ve heard I always give in. liquid courage the cowardly lion is trying to hide under a bridge I burned down years ago. It’s hidden inside the coffin beside all of the ‘no’s’ that I let die, ‘cause demanding I not be entered would be to deny that I was born with skin made of enter signs.”

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Selena Mae

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Zaidie Cooper Fiona and Lila digital

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Love handles I feel good today In a constantly on the verge of puking way Love is sickness Love is honey— You can never really get it off your fingers, Your counter tops, Your tummy I feel strange today The world is working in waves Indigo skyline hidden under December grey Everybody is speaking in codeThey know

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Love is poetry: Sometimes you get stuck Sometimes it spews out of you like A hose with a finger over the hole Sharp and cold Love is letting go and screaming Only to realize it was only a two-foot drop Into a cotton-candy room Hot air balloons with messages written on top Crop tops and Love handles everything

Selena Mae

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Genetics The couple beside me are hanging out with their friend who is holding a newborn baby. I want to tell them that I just had a breakup and the baby made me happy but that would be a lie. When I got off stage from reading a poem about her to a crowded room on our second date, she laughed and smiled and said: “that was bold.” I wish I was bold but really, that was a warning song. I was shining my headlights in her eyes so she’d know I was coming, know I’d already arrived and know that when I get settled in it takes a ghost to get me out. Last night she told me “it’s a shame because I see glimpses of the real you through your anxiety and they are really, really cool” I said…. fuck! Ouch! You’re asking something of me that I’ve prayed for every breakdown sunrise for my entire life, every window I’ve ever looked out of has been fogged with a promise that I will do better… I will do anything just please, god, let me be better. Let me be better. Saying my problem is just anxiety, that my personhood should be able to show through, is like looking outside into the eye of a hurricane and saying—it looks like it’s crying for me. My father told me: “I have loved three women in my life and I married two of them.” I thought, damn, as if the anxiety and hairy toes you gave me weren’t bad enough.

Selena Mae

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12.13.97 is your rotting mouth breeding lilacs? do you still shake with desire? is there any way i could see you laugh a flash of lightning? when we die do we come un strapped in time? or are you timestrapped? (Where do they go? Do they stay and watch us grow? I tried to reach an old friend. I’m not sure if he’s still with me.) are you sick of holdinghands and sleeping with sad-old people? anyway happy birthday there’s two spaces and i’m not sure which is filled and which is empty but I hope you’re in the filled    one.

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Adam Eldred

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The Kid Finds The Rot “Hey guys?” the Kid said, appearing from between two dumpsters. Two of the boys looked up from their game. The Tall­-Skinny one was still staring at the dirt board, trying to make any move. “Will you come look at something? I just found it and, well, I’m... not sure what it is. Thought one of you might know.” Something about the Kid’s fidgeting caught their curiosity. They shuffled to their feet and dropped their sticks, all except the Fat one with the snot-­ crusted nose, who carefully laid his on his milk crate. Tall­-Skinny smudged the board when he walked over it. They wove between the dumpsters, ducked under the tarps, walked carefully on the broken lumber. They all had to pause for a second when Fat’s leather jacket snagged on a nail in a post he was trying to squeeze by. The dirt gave way to crunching gravel as they made it to the outer ring of loose litter and half empty trash cans. “It’s in that one.” The Kid pointed to a metal can. The Third boy scraped the lid off and four heads peered over the rim. Tall-­Skinny took a step to the side to let the setting sun shine in better. The buzzing of flies rang in their ears. “What is that?” Fat breathed.
 “Well it’s dead now,” said the Third.
 “You think it was alive at some point?” Tall-­Skinny asked. “Must’ve been, to smell this bad,” the Third answered.
 “It doesn’t smell that bad,” The Kid ventured quietly.
 “That’s ‘cause you’re not tall enough to get a face-­full of this smell,” Tall­Skinny said, stepping back and turning away.
 “How do you think it got in there?” asked Fat, also stepping back.
 “Probably crawled in there to die,” the Third said, unable to look away from the can. “You’re still assuming that thing was alive at some point,” Tall­-Skinny said. “Well what else do you think it is, fruit?” the Third snapped, looking finally away to glare at the other boy.
 “Well no, it’s just—” Tall­-Skinny started.
 “I don’t like it,” a small voice said. The three looked at the Kid.
 “Me neither,” said Fat. “Don’t like looking at it or smelling it or thinking about it. We should just go.”
 “Wait!” the Kid squeaked in protest, despite none of the boys moving. “I­- I think we should bury it. Or something.”
 The boys all looked from the can to the Kid.
 “Just so. I don’t know. So no one else sees it?” the Kid continued, shrugging a bit. “Yeah,” the Third said. “Yeah, no one needs to. Good idea.”


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The Third and the Kid walked back to the lumber pile and found some broken off planks to dig with. They went back to the can where Tall­-Skinny and Fat were talking and avoiding looking in the trash can. No one had thought of putting the lid back on. The Kid found a softish piece of ground where there was less gravel and he and the Third began to scrape at the earth. “This is probably deep enough,” said the Kid, after a foot or so.
 “No,” said the Third, jamming his board through a stray root. “Not yet.”
 They dug another six inches before Tall­-Skinny offered to help. He took the kid’s spot. Fat wanted to help too, so he took over for Tall­-Skinny. The Third wanted to keep his board a bit longer. “Alright.” The Third stood. No one wanted to touch the thing so Tall-­Skinny and Fat dragged the can over, leaving a long scar on the ground behind them. Fat’s leather jacket strained across his back as he worked; there must have been something heavy in the bottom of the can. They pulled their shirts up over their noses and carefully tipped the can and shook it out into the hole, along with a candy bar wrapper and a little shoe. The Kid kicked the shoe away but the wrapper had a corner tucked under the thing, so that stayed. Fat knocked the can out of the way so all three older boys could use the planks to shove the dirt back into the hole, packing it down as they went. The Kid stood watching, swatting at the flies that were attempting to crawl into his ears and scraping gravel together with his toes. When it was done, all four boys stood around for a moment, squinting in the red-­orange sun. “Well,” the Third said. “This ain’t a funeral.” The three taller boys shrugged and turned away as they inspected the dirt that had seeped into their hands. The Kid nudged the small pile of rocks onto the overturned dirt, stepping on it as he hurried to catch up. The buzzing of the flies faded as they retreated, but the smell of rot clung to their soft spots: their clothes, the inside of their noses.

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Annie Boisvert

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Ariel Pickett Cloud Gate digital

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The Streak A pearl —an opalescent speck of roe?— pricked the night-time city sky as brilliant as when two airplanes collide. It hung, then sunk, with the graceful inevitability of cause into consequence leaving a streak like a stretchmark on a stomach swelling to evacuate or a scratch mark from a claw hungry to eviscerate. Slowly, it clenched into closeness, widened into glare —slow bloom of a white phosphorous dahlia?— like the awed eyes, glimmering with cold flame of distant firework, comet, military flare.

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Max Binks-Collier

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Mikaela Kautzky First Morning in Raglan Pentax k1000

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Kundalini Strand I found a strand of your hair on me today. Reading, I rested you upon my shirt. You curled into my chest like a snake, the soft rattle in the sand, the sage. I knew as a boy that this hair would belong to you, when I felt its shape press matter— memory’s mint.

I liken these strands of you to the crescent flight of the deer, the plumage of the goldfinch, reedgrass caressed in autumn light,

all this, so that when you run towards me I bend in the river sedge—this time, I am prepared for your elevation, the coiled snake at the base of my spine.

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MW Jaeggle

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Death in Vivid Violet I was too young to understand death. I drew crude crayon pictures of your headstone in vibrant colours. Under the grass green line, scattered with outrageous orange flowers, there was a body composed of five wax strokes–– a circle for a head, with crisscross eyes, and a smile.

Madison Duenkler

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ElĂŠa Regembal Untitled digital

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TIED The sail of the yellow sunfish flapped uselessly in the wind. Whipping at the side of the boat and sometimes hitting Audrey in the face, it thrashed like the injured bird she once caught and detained under false pretentions of goodwill until it finally escaped one day when her mom left the kitchen window open. She had always maintained that domesticating birds was inhumane after that. How much time did she have before the sail ripped free and floated into the sky, abandoning her, just like the bird did? Audrey had made a New Year’s resolution to move to an exotic, tropical place. She felt that she looked the most attractive when sporting a resilient tan and she thought her friends back home might think it a sophisticated, mature decision. Truth be told, she had never learned how to tie her shoes. Barbados’s tropical climate permitted her to wear sandals all year long. While she crouched despondently in the hull of the little sailing boat, she could only think of two instances when the small oversight in her social education had caused her any inconvenience. One time in middle school, her best friend Bethany gave her a pink and green friendship bracelet with those little plastic beads that spelled her name woven into it. Too embarrassed to admit that she couldn’t tie it on herself and ask someone to help her, she shoved it into the back of her nightstand drawer and forgot about it. Bethany and Audrey grew apart in high school and Audrey always wondered if it was because Bethany had been irreparably wounded by the offense. The other time was during the final game of her college hockey league, when Audrey had biked the 40 minutes to the rink from her apartment only to realize that she had forgotten her special-order Velcro strap skates. The rink rented standard hockey gear but instead Audrey faked a bout of illness and was excused from playing. As the star player, she felt it more appropriate to forfeit the game to their rivals than reveal her private shame. But this was different. Audrey had rented the sailboat on an adventurous whim and unexpectedly, the rigging to the main sail snapped, leaving her stranded and being carried farther and farther out to sea every second by the current. “This must be natural selection,” she chuckled to herself. The sail whacked against her again, a little slap of discipline for the rug rat with the untied laces. Most people didn’t know things. She looked back at the shore of speckled beachgoers. One of those folks has an English degree and has never read Shake-

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speare. One of those folks wears a choker everyday as a fashion statement without knowing its ties to prostitution, lesbianism and BDSM. One of those folks uses the dessert spoon for their soup, every single time. But not one of those folks is going to die at sea today because they don’t know how to tie a knot. ————————— How did she get back again? Audrey couldn’t remember. Did she swim? Did her husband tie the knot? No. No. She wasn’t married then. She must have gotten back somehow because she couldn’t hear the flapping sail now. Where was she now? Audrey came out of her reverie and her eyes slowly regained focus. She was looking at a pair of white, untied sneakers partially hidden by a pair of purple, swollen ankles planted firmly on a glossy, tiled floor. “Oh honey! Let me help you!”, a young and distraught southern drawl pierced from behind her. Audrey straightened up quickly before the nurse could get to her. Her face had been between her knees for some time she supposed because the blood from her head rushed suddenly downward, causing her to slump with dizziness in her chair and consequently alarming the southern drawl even more. Her eyes focused again after another minute and she recognized the room vaguely but not the simpering nurse in front of her. “I was… I think I was … just trying to tie my shoes”, Audrey rasped, her voice sounding altered somehow than it had been on the boat just then, but still distinctively hers. “Oh you silly, Mrs. Greer, you never wear those old things anymore. We got you a new blue pair, remember? With the Velcro?” The nurse shuffled the white sneakers out of sight and began to strap the Velcro monstrosities to Audrey’s feet. “No! I learned! I learned how to tie them after... after that one time… that time I… well dammit I can’t remember now but I know that I know!” Audrey bellowed at the nurse while trying to swat her hands away. “Look here Mrs. Greer,” the southern drawl snapped testily, “every day I come in here and everyday I find you sittin’ and fumblin’ with your damned laces. I really haven’t the time to go through instructing you about bunny loops every other afternoon. So you’ll either let me put on the blue ones or you won’t have lunch with the other residents, you understand?” “Bitch.” Audrey hissed with a smirk. Southern drawl was a sassy nurse who

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didn’t put up with any crap from the old dementia-ridden biddies like herself. She respected that and she would wear the blue ones to lunch. ————————— Audrey had had a husband and a bird once. Both were gone now. She’d lived in Barbados and sailed a boat. She’d met folks who didn’t know things and folks that taught her things but she couldn’t remember their names or the things they knew and didn’t know. Sometimes Audrey thought she played hockey, but she wasn’t ever sure and the reveries didn’t last long enough to be certain of anything, really. But what Audrey did know, was that the blue pair wasn’t so bad if she couldn’t remember why she hated Velcro anyhow.

Chloe Grant

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A Picture to Explain Everything ‘; `., It was so windy yesterday that she brought the leaves inside to sit with her on the couch all of them hovering slow & extended towards the floor, weightlessly coaxing the blue thread on her thigh to drip further.

Alexia Avina

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Mikaela Kautzky Break Up in Bangkok Pentax k1000

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Butterflies The last time the butterflies went free I was too, gazing at him cloaked in white his half-smile opened my chest entirely. ————————— This time more stoic amidst the gentle breaking inside of me the flora in my gut disagree in sharp bursts with the extent of the warmth around me the colors within & without.

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desire: to bloom back into a body unaware of itself that summer, when I raced along the ivy laden wall bare feet pattering against bare dirt, I became a raging comet startling the monarchs in & out of their rest, a source of gravity unable to balance pleasure with fear, invincibility with the tiring of wings. Now I am still, more skilled at offering up my pain to silence. ————————— Olivier remarks that the children look like little caterpillars, I ask if that makes us butterflies. He doesn’t seem to understand how much I need him to say yes.

Alexia Avina

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Winter 2017  
Winter 2017  
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