ISSUE 9 is OUT

Issue 9 – Fall/Winter 2013. Buy our latest issue, by clicking HERE. Contributors: FICTION: Luke Wiget, Ralph Lombreglia, Elena Megalos, Greg Sanders, Jason Napoli Brooks, and Jade Shames NONFICTION: Martha Mcphee and Miles Fuller POETRY: Honor Moore, Ishion Hutchinson, Peg Boyers and more. . . . ART: Paco Pomet, Anthony Micallef, Ian Francis, and Hye Jin Chung INTERVIEWS: Andrew Solomon, author of Far From the Tree   Buy this issue >>      

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Introducing: the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop

H.O.W. Journal is thrilled to introduce poems by 8 members of the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop, curated by Catherine Pond. Photo by Marta Jałkiewicz The Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop is a group of young and emerging poets and prose writers working at varying levels of experience in both Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian and English. They started meeting in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, in 2012 at the distinguished bookshop/café Buybook, and they have given public readings. Poems by eight members appear here. Pieces in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian include English translations along with audio clips of the authors reading in the original language; translator Mirza Purić provides a Translator’s Note. The workshop was launched with the help and encouragement of many generous people. The group particularly wishes to thank PEN Centre of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Buybook, the Sarajevo War Theatre (Sarajevski Ratni Teatar), and Galerija B. Smoje. Please scroll below and click on the green links to read the poems, first in their native language, and then in English. For inquiries, you may contact the Sarajevo Writers’ Workshop at sarajevoww@gmail.com. * Dijala Hasanbegović: Photo by Azra Rizvanbegović Dijala Hasanbegović’s poems My All and First Aid are breathless explorations of family, origin, music and imagination. With profundity, Hasanbegović measures the impact of memory upon reality when she writes, ‘in a white, well, envelope/fits the whole body of my mother.’ Dijala Hasanbegović is a poet who lives in Sarajevo. She works as a freelance journalist. She has published poetry in various magazines, including The American Poetry Review. She leads the workshop. Click here to listen to Dijala read her poems. * Ivana Krstanović: With careful self-examination, Ivana Krstanović explores the fatigue of the mundane in her poems Weary and For Long. Time and the idea of oblivion haunt these poems, though Krstanović determines to stay strong, writing, ‘Long have I walked this path,/ yet I don’t fear the sun.’ Ivana Krstanović is from Tomislavgrad, Bosnia and Herzegovina. She is completing her master’s degree in English Language and Literature at the University of Sarajevo. She works for Radio Vrhbosna and writes for the magazine Pupil (Školarac). Her main interest is poetry, but she also writes spiritual meditations, philosophical texts, and short stories. Click here to listen to Ivana read her poems. * Marina Alagić-Bowder: Marina Alagić-Bowder lectures in the University of Sarajevo’s English department, attends the workshop, and provided editorial input on the translations published here. * Matea Šimić: In Pink Tricycle and A Dinner for Ghosts, Matea Šimić grapples with an adolescence torn open by images of violence and war. Echoing T.S. Eliot at times, these poems attempt to reconcile ‘a Sunday like any other/a girl nailed to a chair.’ But even past violence can be usurped by the fragility of the present. ‘We are sitting on glass chairs,’ Šimić explains. Matea Šimić is from Oroslavje, Croatia. She holds an MA in English Language and Literature from the University of Zagreb. She currently lives and works in Barcelona, Spain. Click here to listen to Matea read her poems. * Mirza Purić: Photo by Sanjin Pejković Mirza Purić is a literary translator and baritone guitarist in the noise rock duo Gudron. He holds a BA in English from the University of Vienna and has translated many British, American, and Austrian authors. He is especially proud of his translations of poems by Dijala Hasanbegović, Naida Muratović, Neđla Ćemanović Porča, Zerina Zahirović, Ivana Krstanović, Selma Kulović, Matea Simić, and Nermana Česko. ‘The very existence of this group is…

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Jessica Poli’s: Dementia Song

Congratulations again to Jessica Poli, winner of our 2013 poetry contest.  If you enjoy her work make sure to check out her startling and heart-bending new book, The Egg Mistress. . . . Dementia Song for Gus The pressing of thingsagainst windows. Your mother singsas winter sours the sills. Moss green carpetseeps into your feet. Inside the little house,someone screaming at the door; the furnace in the cellar shaking; the floor covered in mountains, the gramophone spilling grain. And boats, out of nowhere, rocking—And O, how they sing.    

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Poetry by Jessica Poli

Here’s another poem from Jessica Poli, winner of our 2013 poetry contest.  Enjoy! For Rubies To Erupt From Soil I won’t be scared of my teeth. Of those horses shifting through the corn rows. Of the world, old and full of snow. Going slowly, I feel for rubies in the pasture but only find bits of glass which I never know how to handle. And there is clay, too, forming half- letters that once made a sign advertising fresh milk at varying prices. The ground smells like crying. I come across a neighborhood boy lighting matches to throw at my skin as he screams to no one: nothing. He screams and screams as I sit and sift. Jessica Poli’s heart belongs to Pittsburgh. She is currently an MFA student at Syracuse University, Editor of Birdfeast Magazine, and Poetry Editor for Salt Hill. Her first chapbook, The Egg Mistress, was published by Gold Line Press in 2013.

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Jessica Poli wins H.O.W’s Poetry Contest!

H.O.W. received hundreds of submission to our 2013 poetry contest.  Thanks to all who entered: the work was excellent and many fine poems passed through our offices.   Special note is given to two fine writers — Pat Hale and Simon Perchik– who were runners up.   But, in the end, there could only be one winner. . . . Congratulations to Jessica Poli, winner of H.O.W’s 2013 Poetry Contest, judged by author Ben Mirov!  Here’s what Ben had to say: “I like poems that zone me out. Poems that bring me into their time stream and hold me in the light of their weirdness and the purity of their singularity. Jessica Poli’s poems do this to me. They allow me to inhabit a world that is more real than the one in which I live. . . .” And here is one of Ben’s selections from Jessica’s work, the first of three: The Future Will Be As Lonely As the Present The labyrinth’s electricity shivers See the crow tangled in the wire? Here— Open up the sky See where lightning connects to the machine Jessica Poli’s heart belongs to Pittsburgh. She is currently an MFA student at Syracuse University, Editor of Birdfeast Magazine, and Poetry Editor for Salt Hill. Her first chapbook, The Egg Mistress, was published by Gold Line Press in 2013.   Congratulations Jessica!

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Wearable Literature Edition Two

Wearable Literature Two is now available. T-shirts designed by Julie Farstad, Loretta Mae Hirsch, Kenneth E. Parris III, and Yuanyuan Yang. Text by Anne Carson, Robert Currie, Junot Díaz, Francine Prose, and George Saunders. T-shrits are 100% Cotton, Vintage Soft, Crew Neck from Alternative Apparel.     Words by Anne Carson & Robert Currie Artwork by Julie Farstad Past our window Fly scraps of paper and red hats and fish All then captured in the nets of trees Past our hats Fly branches of scrap and fish and capture All red trees and nets. Words by Francine Prose Artwork by Loretta Mae Hirsch He knew what women wanted was the simple attention a man would give another man talking about his car… Words by Junot Díaz Artwork by Kenneth E. Parris III We found an empty apartment out near the highway, left the dogs and the milk outside. You know how it is when you get back with somebody you’ve loved. It felt better than it ever was, better than it ever could be again. After, she drew on the walls with her lipstick and her nail polish, stick men and stick women boning. Words by George Saunders Artwork by Yuanyuan Yang I go back to my Verisimilitude Evaluation on the Cimarron Brothel. Everything looks super. As per my recommendations they’ve replaced the young attractive simulated whores with uglier women with a little less on the ball. We were able to move the ex-simulated whores over to the Sweete Shoppe, so everybody’s happy, especially the new simulated whores, who were for the most part middle-aged women we lured away from fast-food places via superior wages.           Artwork by: Julie Farstad was born in Elmira, New York and lives and works in Kansas City, MO. She received an MFA in Painting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a BFA in Painting from the University of Notre Dame. She has received a number of awards for both her teaching and her painting and has shown her work in numerous solo exhibitions in Chicago and New York. Farstad’s paintings focus on “themes of childhood, specifically the childhood dramas of girlhood, femininity and feminism.” Loretta Mae Hirsch is an MFA Candidate at the New York Academy of Art. Her work has been featured in a number of publications as well as group and solo exhibitions. She was born in the American south, has lived in London and Barcelona, and currently resides in New York City. She has studied at the Kansas City Art Institute, Atlanta College of Art, and Glasgow School of Art. Kenneth E. Parris III is a Brooklyn based artist. Born in Philadelphia, PA, 1975, raised in Austin, TX, Kenneth had his first solo exhibition at G Gallery in Houston, TX, March 2007. Since then, he has exhibited in galleries and exhibition spaces in New York City and across the United States as well as in numerous Contemporary Art Fairs. Kenneth graduated with a BFA in Illustration and an AAS in Graphic Design from Rochester Institute of Technology, NY and has a professional background in Advertising and Design. Kenneth is also an Art Editor for H.O.W. Journal. His paintings and installations have been critically acclaimed by numerous publications and media including National Public Radio. Blending layers of wood, paper, type, paint and image he explores inter-personal relationships and the effect of an individuals actions on the surrounding human landscape. Kenneth also works…

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Young Poets Part VI

H.O.W. Journal is thrilled to publish our SIXTH selection of younger poets, curated by Catherine Pond. Enjoy, and scroll down to read earlier selections. Marina Blitshteyn: ‘My Heart’s Structure is Sound’ hums out the relationship between love and violence, between grace and wildness. It is not only a song, steady and pervasive, but also the anatomy of a conflicted heart. Marina Blitshteyn is the author of Russian for Lovers (Argos Books, 2011) and is currently an adjunct instructor at Fordham and Pace Universities.  * Victoria Bay: With elegance, painful candor, and an alluring surrealism, Bay’s poems ‘Agnosognosia’ and ‘A Burr is a Seed or Dry Fruit in which the Seeds Bear Hooks or Teeth’ embody a fractured psychology and reveal one daughter’s relationship to her mother. Victoria Bay received her BA from Smith College. She is currently an MFA candidate and a Research Arts student at Columbia University. * William Fargason: For the narrator in Fargason’s heart-breaking poem, ‘Sour Wine,’ love is intrinsically linked to guilt, whose ‘poplar yoke wore my shoulders raw.’ William Fargason is a graduate of Auburn University. He is currently a poetry M.F.A. candidate at the University of Maryland. His previous work has appeared in Eclectica Magazine. * Elizabeth Metzger: Metzger’s voice gently scythes in ‘Boy with Barn Owl,’ a tenderly fatal rendering of time and the pastoral. Elizabeth Metzger is an MFA student at Columbia University. She currently works at Parnassus: Poetry in Review. * Shelley Wong: ‘Fidelity’ handles the subject of desire with fluidity and poise, speaking to the feelings of inadequacy that desire brings to light within each of us. Shelley Wong is an MFA candidate at Ohio State University and Associate Poetry Editor for The Journal.

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Young Poets Part V

H.O.W. Journal is thrilled to publish our FIFTH selection of younger poets, curated by Catherine Pond. Enjoy, and scroll down to read earlier selections. Jay Deshpande: Deshpande’s mastery and ease is on full display in his poems ‘After the Child Fell’ & ‘Landing in St. Petersburg, Florida.’ The first is all the more powerful for its reserved, spare description of trauma. The second recounts a lover’s journey, both physical and emotional. Jay Deshpande’s poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Washington Square, La Petite Zine, Narrative, Handsome, Shampoo, Spork, and elsewhere. He is the former poetry editor of AGNI and he curates the Metro Rhythm Reading Series in Brooklyn. * Megan Fernandes: ‘Spectral’ & ‘South Philly’ are that rare breed of lyricism and intellectualism which thrills and delights in every sense. Humble yet powerful, their separate landscapes (one rural, one urban) both exude the sinister with ‘sodium lamps scanning the fog’ and ‘Quinceñara dresses hung dead-like on headless mannequins.’ Megan Fernandes is a PhD candidate in English at the University of California, Santa Barbara and holds an MFA in Poetry from Boston University. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Rattle, Guernica, Redivider, Memorious, and the California Journal of Poetics. * Lucy King: Landscape is very much a character in ‘Adore’ & ‘Lake Baikal,’ two poems that plunge through longing and solitude with both reticence and intimacy. One foot in the natural world, they impress with their assured knowledge, their sense of abandonment, and their imagination. Lucy King received her BA in English from Skidmore College. She works in child psychology research in Boston. She grew up in Providence, Rhode Island. * Laura Marris: In ‘The Telling’ & ‘Piñon’ fossils are ‘curled segments like fingers after a slap,’ while pinecones are ‘the fists of a child pounding the earth.’ In these poems, Marris portrays troubled domestic scenarios with remarkable originality and language of a particularly rare beauty. Laura Marris is an MFA candidate and Teaching Fellow at Boston University. Her work has been published in many journals, performed around the country, and featured on NPR as a winner of the Hillstead Museum’s Connecticut Fresh Voices Contest. * Josh Schneider: ‘Wasting Honey on Mummies’ is a brief but startlingly imaginative take on contemporary values, exploring what it means to be ‘clean,’ while driving us to a dark conclusion about our own significance. Josh Schneider is a marketer living in Brooklyn. His writing has previously appeared in FUN, Fawlt, Short Fast and Deadly, VICE, Leveler, Noisey, and Thought Catalog. He is a Pisces and enjoys archery, skiing, and tennis.

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Young Poets Part IV

H.O.W. Journal is thrilled to publish the fourth part of our selection of poems by younger poets, curated by Catherine Pond. Enjoy! Lauren Clark: Intimate, poignant, sometimes ferocious, the clear voices in ‘You Write to Me’ and ‘Meditation’ occupy the dark imaginative space between want and need. Lauren Clark is an MFA candidate at the University of Michigan and serves as an editorial intern at the Michigan Quarterly Review.  She is most famous for her enduring love of Beyoncé. Soren Stockman: ‘The Bigger Fire’ and ‘Permission’ are statuesque, chiseled down to a fine, bright logic. Soren Stockman is Program Coordinator for the Summer Literary Seminars program in Vilnius, Lithuania. He is currently an MFA candidate at New York University. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Playboy, Narrative Magazine, Tiferet Journal, and La Fovea. K.T. Billey: Atmosphere transforms the speakers in ‘Wind’ and ‘Wild Thing Worn Thin,’ two poems that gracefully depict the unraveling world. Hailing from Alberta, Canada, K.T. Billey now lives in New York City. Billey’s poetry has appeared in Other Voices and Blue Stockings Magazine. Marc Jaffee: ‘Blues in the Night’ and ‘Frescoes at Noon’ proceed as part dream-scape, part confession as they bring to light the unendurable with gentle candor. Marc Jaffee is a founding editor of Box of Jars, an online journal of art and literature. He currently lives in Brooklyn. His poems have appeared in The Best American Poetry, The St. Petersburg Review, and others. .

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