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Astra Papachristodoulou: The methodology of Astropolis

As guest-editor this month, I was fortunate to have published a small selection of stunning, future-facing poems from Astropolis (Haverthorn Press, 2018) by Astra Papachristodoulou earlier this month. I also asked Astra if she would write a small piece on Astropolis, which she has kindly done.

The methodology of Astropolis  Continue reading “Astra Papachristodoulou: The methodology of Astropolis”

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JL Bogenschneider: The End Of The Post-, Post-Industrial Age

The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 1The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 2The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 3The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 4The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 5The End Of The Post–, Postindustrial 6

JL Bogenschneider has had work featured in a number of print and online journals, including 404 Ink, minor literature[s], Vol. 1 Brooklyn, Necessary Fiction, PANK and Ambit. @bourgnetstogner

Ash and Stardust ix: Recalibrate

Ash and Stardust, a monthly column by energy worker and artist/writer DHIYANAH HASSAN explores the intersections of tarot with healing and creativity. You can read the rest of the series here.

While our Northern and Southern hemispheres exchange weather, monsoon rains pour its threats and blessings on the equator. Toasty lands find relief with aid from migrating clouds, storm winds push the haze in and out, rising mud ring in flowers along the roadsides like celebration, bursts of heat and humidity break any rhythm we might try to tame with reason – the combination is calming, chaotic, and languid. Our eyes are sleepy from rain then watchful for floods and typhoons while our trees and shorelines swell with volume. Sometimes an irrational anxiety stirs our body, coaxing us to consider our roles with each other in unexpected ways. Other times a cloud inside us wrings itself dry, releasing its burdens and we find ourselves drained from feeling it all.

Rain drumming against awnings, earth, and windows bring old lullabies back to the heart.

As seasons change, so do our daily habits, our bodies adapting and compromising with us. Temperatures shake up circadian rhythms, stunting or catalyzing growth within the myriads of topographies making up our bodily beings, emotional terrains, and mental health. Our pendulum of awareness may swing from one side to the other with frightening intensity. We breathe to find our center, then we keep breathing – devoting ourselves to Earth’s gravitational pull to keep us steady.

We were made to feel our seasons, our weathers, personally.

Continue reading “Ash and Stardust ix: Recalibrate”

DNA by Johannah Rodgers

On desktop browsing the below hyperlinks are functional (if you are on a mobile device you can amble over to [here] for functional hyperlinks).

Continue reading “DNA by Johannah Rodgers”

Gov’t Queries by Katherine DeCoste

During the purplest midnight the time comes to repurpose and scavenge the deepest recesses of the pancreas, sugar-processor and liquefier, mushy and shapeless, which is the least necessary of every twinkling lump of flesh under the round belly. This is major surgery.

A procedure is in order, to be followed precisely.

First, wetness settles: stretch in it, breathe it and swell up, an oversalted fish. Water is made up of many parts and layers: the sunlight, the twilight, and the midnight. The operation must be completed in the dim part where dust particles are zooplankton and speak with urgency to each visitor. Dust spins through air, little animals through water. Dust is silent, but the ocean buzzes and they wiggle their weak legs, incapable of standing.

Second, the endemic, veined skin is stickily plastered onto the inner red eyelids. Bodies are simple, paper-maiche collections of wallpaper. Outside, floral patterns. Inside, the abdominal organs all run together—root around until you find the one you’re removing. It’s easiest with closed eyes.

Third, the sea grows weary of pressing and pressure fades but darkness doesn’t.
Fourthly, the patient will grow distressed as you sever their energy-delivery-system. Explain it like this: I had the bends once and an angel appeared. She glowed brightly in the midnight zone. Said, “we’ve carbonated your bloodstream and these are not simple growing pains. There are impassable meters between you and the heavenly sphere spinning.” Around my finger she tied a white ribbon glowing green in her eerie radioactivity—it read, “eat me.”

Finally they will need to be sustained somehow—choke down sugared green Jell-O and butterscotch pudding cups. Only foods that wobble and can only be partially-chewed are acceptable. The fluorescent lights never fully go off in the hall. Force jittery insulin into their veins.

 


Author photo

Katherine DeCoste is a writer and undergraduate English student in Edmonton, Alberta. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Sybil Journal, Rag Queen Periodical, Structural Damage, and others. She likes to write about anxiety, dissociation, and decay. You can find her @katydecoste on Twitter and Instagram.

About the banner image: The operating room orderly, a 1-W, Voluntary Service worker, wheels a patient from the elevator to the operating room. VS workers in the Mennonite Hospital at La Junta, Colo., contribute much through their sacrificial service.

The New Atomist: A Selection from the Catalogue Raisonné of Anton Aubinov by Joshua Rothes

 

“In the end, I would like it to be said that I have been a silent conversationalist with the world, a patient interlocutor devoid of names and arguments, seeking and at odds with, always, the atomic.” — Anton Aubinov, 1998

For a while, he graced a footnote in a biography of Clyfford Still1, removed in subsequent editions, purged as too obscure, adding no value to the lay reader. He is heavily rumored to have been the young artist called a “pissant” by Barnett Newman in a story attached to but never actually recounted by Betty Parsons. He may or may not have been able to do hands.

The late painter Anton Aubinov remained near-hidden throughout his career, subsumed into the greater wave of late American abstraction. His lone New York exhibition, at a here-today-gone-tomorrow space in Chelsea in 1952, was thrown together to capitalize on the recent fame of Mark Rothko, who had displayed, for the first time, his multiforms the year before. As the story of Aubinov’s opening goes, the drywall on which his works were mounted had been improperly adhered to the concrete casing, and the collapse of one wall was the subject of much of the subsequent press. So it went, so frequently. Continue reading “The New Atomist: A Selection from the Catalogue Raisonné of Anton Aubinov by Joshua Rothes”

Some Body by Florence Lenaers

Some years ago I wrote a draft on my left arm. An inarticulate tale. Scarry. A slasher script. Part-listless, part-restless. Preverbal. The script looked—and still looks—like tally marks. The kind of marks used to count ever since upper-paleolithic days. Tally marks to count days, for example. The days of a sentence.

Have you ever thought of your body as a prison cell? [Y/N] Continue reading “Some Body by Florence Lenaers”

Spectator Sport by Marta Zawieja

My mother tells me I need a haircut because even she understands that, in this day and age, she can no longer instruct me kindly how many rolls from my stomach I have to lose before I am finally pretty. Continue reading “Spectator Sport by Marta Zawieja”

Reality/Fantasy by Michèle Fry

Continue reading “Reality/Fantasy by Michèle Fry”

Ash and Stardust vi: Mars and Saturn walk into a teahouse and are ambushed by the Moon with Neptune cackling on the roof

Ash and Stardust, a monthly column by artist and writer DHIYANAH HASSAN, explores the intersections of tarot with healing and creativity. These are personal essays and articles sharing experiences of growth as someone who has recently found a deep connection to tarot. You can read the rest of the pieces here.

As a Scorp Sun with Cap rising, this Mars Retrograde plus Capricorn full moon has been at the forefront of my headspace. It’s proving to be a groundbreaking combination for energetic upgrades. Nevermind that since Neptune stationed retrograde, I’ve spent most of my night-time hours getting deeper into dream work. Maybe I’ll write more about that one day – I’m mostly reeling from how absolutely sublime and affirming these experiences are and although I do feel like sharing about them, I still tip-toe around the language for it, hesitant for now. Mostly I’m just allowing things to unfold while my body nags me to both get some work done and to take time off so it can fully catch up with everything.

This Mars Rx reminds me a lot of the Knights cards in reverse, particularly the Knight of Wands. A warrior in reverse is a warrior that performs best in the shadows – observing, strategizing, recharging. Forced into action, this warrior might catalyze chaos via misunderstandings, accidents, or battles with no victory in sight – but not all chaos is unnecessary and a warrior can hold this knowledge well in their body when they’re able to get out of their own way. One way to override self-sabotaging habits is through intention setting and gratitude journaling.

Continue reading “Ash and Stardust vi: Mars and Saturn walk into a teahouse and are ambushed by the Moon with Neptune cackling on the roof”

Footnote to silence

By Fredric Nord

Zero is the only numeral with the ability to remain itself in solitude. Zero is defined by the ability to not change. All other numerals are relative to each other and depend on each other for existence. They always change and change together. Without each other, stripped of cohabitation, they have no meaning or personality. That’s why all numerals in solitude equals zero. The total amount of numerals aren’t gazillions but one and a half, generously measured. Continue reading “Footnote to silence”

Ash and Stardust v: The World Turned Upside Down

Ash and Stardust, a monthly column by artist and writer DHIYANAH HASSAN, explores the intersections of tarot with healing and creativity. These are personal essays and articles sharing experiences of growth as someone who has recently found a deep connection to tarot. You can read the rest of the pieces here.
In the past month, I saw my childhood dream of having a conventionally successful art career – this dream that kept me alive through overwhelming traumas – die off. I made the decision to orphan myself from the biological family because they still couldn’t respect my boundaries. This country I’m in saw its first ever government change in the recent elections and despite the hope sizzling in the air, I still felt like it was trying to kick me out. Hope tends to follow change, it’s true, but so does apprehension.

These were the background noises weighing down on me for the past two weeks, as I worked through illness to meet deadlines, rummaging resources in search of plant-based remedies that could help alleviate all the gross ways stress had affected my body. I was thick in the overwhelm and it felt both familiar and foreign at the same time.

fullmoonscorpiotides_forAshandStardust.gif
GIF snapshot of ocean waves, taken a day before the full moon

Continue reading “Ash and Stardust v: The World Turned Upside Down”

The End by C.C. O’Hanlon

This is the end.

I’m going to miss these few weeks I’ve spent as a guest editor for BHP. Thanks to everybody who submitted their works around my loosely framed theme of Place: Movement / Escape / Exploration / Architecture. With few exceptions, they were exactly what I’d hoped for.

Thanks to everybody who read them. My immediate predecessors, Florence Lenaers and Amee Nassrene Broumand, had broadened BHP‘s readership significantly and I’m happy (and relieved) that I managed to add to its growth.

I’m also happy to have maintained a similarly rich diversity of contributors. Old, white males – like me – were few.

Thank you, Miggy Angel, for allowing me to be part of this. I’ve had a blast.

I’ll let myself out.

Ash and Stardust iv: The Care in Chaos

Ash and Stardust, a monthly column by artist and writer DHIYANAH HASSAN, explores the intersections of tarot with healing and creativity. These are personal essays and articles sharing experiences of growth as someone who has recently found a deep connection to tarot. You can read the rest of the pieces here.

“To be strong does not mean to sprout muscles and flex. It means meeting one’s own numinosity without fleeing, actively living with the wild nature in one’s own way. It means to be able to learn, to be able to stand what we know. It means to stand and live.” – from Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Last year I designed a spread that was meant, according to my earlier notes, for days when you’re “intellectually and emotionally fucked up.” I named it the Chaos Spread. Here’s how you use it:

Continue reading “Ash and Stardust iv: The Care in Chaos”

Three Fragments On The Portative Organ* by Eva Ferry

Fragment I
The story of a screech: it rose as the last bus of the evening crossed the borders of the city to the motorway. All seventeen of us on the top deck turned our heads. Oh yes, it was perfunctory (because on a double-decker you cannot really see what’s going on behind you on the road, even less so in the dark), but the gesture had already captivated me – the meaning, the intention. By the time all heads were turned, it was clear that we had all misjudged the nature of the screech (pitch dropping, frequency decreasing as it unwrapped). This could never come from a human throat, but rather from the strained brakes of a vehicle. Continue reading “Three Fragments On The Portative Organ* by Eva Ferry”

Phrygians In The Rigging by Caroline Stockford

“I seek a place that can never be destroyed, one that is pure, and that fadeth not away, and is laid up in heaven, and safe there, to be given, at the time appointed, to them that seek it with all their heart.”
– John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress

Our pilgrimage almost came to an end under the wheels of a 10-ton truck on the D650 from Istanbul to Eskişehir, on a summer night made darker by no highway illumination and no towns for miles around. The four-lane highway was flanked on one side by dry,  empty country and on the other by two-hundred-feet-tall black crags, out of which the silhouettes of pine trees leered, high up. Continue reading “Phrygians In The Rigging by Caroline Stockford”

A Believing Place by Nina Foushee

For months before going to Alaska, I thought about how six hours of daylight would feel. In California, I’d lay in bed and imagine the darkness as a hand closing around my throat. Continue reading “A Believing Place by Nina Foushee”

whatitoka (doorway) by Kathleen McLeod

Crying on the threshold, waiting to step into light, waiting to step into a history of pain. I am at the doorway now. The process of healing hollows me out, a tree preparing to become a waka. Sailing back in time into an ocean of grief and love, back to where I began, back to where we first landed. Continue reading “whatitoka (doorway) by Kathleen McLeod”

L.A. Lust by Yanina Spizzirri

This city, this big sprawling dream of a city, mighty and misunderstood Los Angeles, is often defined in terms of tired cliches and sweeping generalizations. Soul-less and a-historical L.A., they say. A city where nobody walks, they lie. A far-reaching enigma going on for miles and miles, they all nod and agree, baffled. Continue reading “L.A. Lust by Yanina Spizzirri”

Who’d Pick A Fight With Lee Marvin? by David Dragon

Douglas, Arizona, is a border town.

I pull up outside the Gadsden Hotel around 10.15am after driving down State Highway 191 from an overnight stay in Willcox. The road follows the line of the Dragoon Mountains, where, in the 1860s, the Chiricahua Apache leader Cochise took refuge with two hundred of his people and for ten years waged a guerrilla war against the US army Continue reading “Who’d Pick A Fight With Lee Marvin? by David Dragon”

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