“Balanced,” New Poetry by Ivana Velickovic

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You asked me if I thought
you were pretty.
Pretty is relative only to
everything besides oneself.
When I stare deeply into the mirror
I become confused.
There are two versions,
one always melting into
the other.

The first: a goddess,
black magic turned blue.
A garland of roses
atop my head,
pure and perfumed.

The second: relative.
A wise aunt who shares dark eyes.
A brave father who shares resilient,
smooth skin.

You liked the idea that beauty
is ancestral and proud.
You asked how you could come to wear
a garland made of roses.
Together we looked in the mirror
and I removed my garland,
delicate as a newborn.

I let it settle on your head.
I let it bring you balance.


these words by Ivana Velickovic were inspired by the work of Angela Pilgrim

kids are out of touch


Vinegar hints sweeten when wine ages: The value grows like investments in Congo’s coltan when the American iPhone hit e-shelves… That last sentence shouldn’t infer that the 2013 wishes it was the ’05, any more than the ’05 wants to be the ’13. No. It isn’t that the ’05 thinks the ’13 is necessarily dumber, or more ignorant, saying smug things like I was doing this when you were in diapers, kid. No. It isn’t that the ’13 doesn’t understand the world like the ’05 does, that it isn’t aware of why it likes what it likes because it doesn’t get the same (dated) pop-culture-references as the ’05, that it doesn’t think as critically as the ’05 because of a lack of years of winning or failing or just getting by, figuring out how to survive like an ’05. No, the ’13 does just fine, learns how to shake off pop-culture, soaked with information, wet and hungry for things that it hasn’t seen, new ways of breaking down things felt in high school or ideas cemented at parties, and, with all respect to the ’05- what a year– it might be drying up these revelations faster than the ’05 had, back in ’02. All these numbers… Please consider the following example: The ’13 just had one of those mind-blowingly-unreal revelations about ‘meaning’ and ‘purpose’ that the ’05, well, is going to have next year, a couple years late, but, uh, pull back the vines on this whole speech a bit, it’s really coming off thirteen-ish, isn’t it, let’s balance the thing with the fact that in no-way-not-a-fucking-chance-imaginable does the ’05 envy the ’13 and wish that it could switch bottles to be that age again, and work those part-time jobs again, and pass the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth sessions of exams again, to push out the intangible borders of Independent Life from high-school dependencies to capital-A-Adult controls, look at me, I am somebody, recognize me, to build new friendships and relationships and to figure how to tie that intangible border into a rope, something dependable to scale a cliff, tying knots for a net- not a noose, as those providing dependency might fear- pulling up, toward something new. The point is that time has made the ’05 sweeter but it has not made it better. Time has made it not only too expensive but also too bitter for people who like a wine that slaps you in the face at dessert and stains your teeth. Colours on your teeth help you feel that bit more responsible while brushing before bed.

colour by Telmomiel
words by Liam

Find me


Find me. Find her finding people to sift through. Find them in class, hearing words about a genocide over bananas, googling new grocery stores. Find the person in the lab, contrasting numbers. Find her on the keys at night, touching, never pressing, etching circles on a ledger line. Find them on the computer, scrolling through photographs, selecting, saving, liking, loving. Find her rejecting the cover band, preferring anything unique, ting of spoon on pint glass. Find him hunting down ideas to disagree with, the comments footer a better place to hide than bottles. Find her buying wood, screws, straight angles. Find him touching sleeves, shaping hierarchies of style for the week. Find them preferring women when they are quiet, telling sisters not to wear makeup. Find me.

colour by Elian & Seth

words by L. L.