The Summer Issue | 2022

The Summer Issue | 2022

Poetry by Petr Hruška, Gerry Stewart, Jeffrey McDaniel, Jeff Friedman, Karel Šebek, Joshua Weiner, Charlie Clark, Clint Margrave, R.A. Allen, VJ René, Beaver West, J. Alan Nelson, Patrick Redmond, Susan Barry-Schulz, Justin Lacour, and Siobhan Ward. Fiction by Marijana Čanak, Lukáš Cabala, and Bianca Bellová. An essay by Siegfried Mortkowitz. An interview with Mi’kmaw/L’nu artist Michelle Sylliboy. Picks by Stephan Delbos, Joshua Mensch, Chris Crawford, and Jan Zikmund.

Interview with L’nu interdisciplinary artist Michelle Sylliboy

Interview with L’nu interdisciplinary artist Michelle Sylliboy

Mi’kmaq/L’nu artist and author Michelle Sylliboy was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and raised on her traditional L’nuk territory in We’koqmaq, Cape Breton. Her published collection of photographs and L’nuk hieroglyphic poetry, Kiskajeyi—I Am Ready, won the 2020 Indigenous Voices Award. Jessica Mensch interviewed her this summer at her home.

Petr Hruška

Petr Hruška

True darkness is in a child’s bedroom. Deep black. Elsewhere there’s just a meager, watery twilight, in which everything, in the end, acquires a humiliating distinctness.

Bianca Bellová

Bianca Bellová

My body is a shallow mound, is how her most famous poem began. She had written it when she was the same age as the young man who was sitting opposite her now, wanting to interview her.

Jeff Friedman

Jeff Friedman

The autocrat draws a large crowd for his speech. He begins to speak but no words come out.

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Current Issue

Michelle Sylliboy

Interview with L’nu interdisciplinary artist Michelle Sylliboy

Mi’kmaq/L’nu artist and author Michelle Sylliboy was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and raised on her traditional L’nuk territory in We’koqmaq, Cape Breton. Her published collection of photographs and L’nuk hieroglyphic poetry, Kiskajeyi—I Am Ready, won the 2020 Indigenous Voices Award. Jessica Mensch interviewed her this summer at her home.

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Petr Hruška

True darkness is in a child’s bedroom. Deep black. Elsewhere there’s just a meager, watery twilight, in which everything, in the end, acquires a humiliating distinctness.

Read Now »
Bianca Bellová. Photo by Jan Trnka

Bianca Bellová

My body is a shallow mound, is how her most famous poem began. She had written it when she was the same age as the young man who was sitting opposite her now, wanting to interview her.

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Jeffrey McDaniel

Little kisses have a way of growing / into big penises, said the grandmother / on prom night. Little leaks sink a ship / yelled the captain, seawater on his lips.

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Joshua Weiner

The sun was high, and it was like the air wanted to have sex with you. Looking down I could see him slowly make his way along the street, stopping to say hello to someone, a man waiting with an old style hat …

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Karel Šebek

I was in the madhouse I’m going to be in the madhouse I am in the madhouse everyone is / I write to keep the train on course to crush me / it’ll happen on a morning no less beautiful than this

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Milan Děžinský

At the opposite bank a barge rolls the river under itself. / We are not approaching our end, / but from ultimate emptiness / the end is hurtling towards us.

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Photo by Ondřej Lipár

Olga Pek

When I regained my faith in poetry, I started writing prose. Concept was my totemic operator. I amassed trophies of species on the brink of extinction and smuggled rare genera across borders to inlay my texts with them.

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Diane Seuss

I used to be a woman who cried / over the useless bastards. / Boo-hoo, I said, filling my hanky, // boo-hoo over the useless bastards. / It is too bad we can’t see ourselves / in our own silliness …

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Stanley Plumly

I remember a day in Houston, in the death / throes of summer, a young man nailing / a live swan to a tree in the posture / of the Christ in an argument with beauty.

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Francesca Bell

Each month comes the reminder / of the gash God made in me. / I like to think He made it / with one finger, the way an artist / will reach right into a painting / and finish it off.

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Valery Ronshin

Once I wrote a remarkable fairy tale and decided to take it to Little Trolley, a children’s gazette. I walked into the editorial office, and sitting right there on the table was the editor, thoughtfully gazing at the ceiling.

“Just think,” he was musing to himself, “how much free space that ceiling has. You could put a couch there, or a couple of armchairs, or even a television.”

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Lillian-Yvonne Bertram

I crisscross the stacks / searching for my mother / and father. The librarian / tells me they boarded / the other plane / that already took off. / This library is an airplane / I do not want to be on / but the doors are locked / and in fact / the librarian states, / we too have taken off.

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Bohuslav Reynek

In my village, I’m the fool. / Sad dogs know me – sad white school / of sleepy dogs that drift away /
into the distance.

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Petr Hruška

True darkness is in a child’s bedroom. Deep black. Elsewhere there’s just a meager, watery twilight, in which everything, in the end, acquires a humiliating distinctness.

Jeff Friedman

The autocrat draws a large crowd for his speech. He begins to speak but no words come out.

Gerry Stewart

Calling this city my home / is a weighty dream I cannot cast aside / or let them haul away.

Jeffrey McDaniel

Little kisses have a way of growing / into big penises, said the grandmother / on prom night. Little leaks sink a ship / yelled the captain, seawater on his lips.

Joshua Weiner

The sun was high, and it was like the air wanted to have sex with you. Looking down I could see him slowly make his way along the street, stopping to say hello to someone, a man waiting with an old style hat …

Bianca Bellová. Photo by Jan Trnka

Bianca Bellová

My body is a shallow mound, is how her most famous poem began. She had written it when she was the same age as the young man who was sitting opposite her now, wanting to interview her.

Gaurav Monga

Christian Dior, in his Little Dictionary of Fashion maintains that “if you have a particularly outstanding feature it is always a good thing to emphasise it. In fact the whole of fashion rests largely on emphasis.”

Marijana Čanak

The teacher swung his arm to strike her once more, but it remained in mid-air, as if petrified. A blue children’s watch was engraved on his skin. And with every tick the clasp sank deeper into his flesh. They could not get it off without cutting.

Lukáš Cabala

It contained the body of a roughly four-year-old boy. That in itself is astounding, since we’re talking about a time frame of about twenty-four thousand years ago …

Daša Drndić

I discovered a lot of secrets, a lot of combinations, dark, political, religious, ideological, personal, to do with chess; spying, double and triple secret agents from all camps, secret police involved in dirty activities.

Siegfried Mortkowitz

Because he wanted all the attention at the funeral, all the condolences, all the pity. The big man in sorrow. Jakob weeping.

Marina Porras

They are women who want to look into the mirror and be satisfied with their reflection. Envy is born when you look into the mirror and don’t like what you see there. Everything about this sin begins with the eyes.

Blue Diode Press | Publisher’s Story

“There is little financial reward in publishing poetry but a great deal of satisfaction” – Rob A. Mackenzie on the origins and history of Blue Diode Press

Favorites from the Last 10 Years, Selected by Michael Stein

If there is a common denominator among the translated fiction published in B O D Y, it is work that maintains a precarious yet exhilarating balance between wild flights of imagination, unbridled humor and grappling with an often harsh reality. Read my favorites here.

Favorites from the Last 10 Years, Selected by Stephan Delbos

Publishing writing you love is the greatest pleasure of editing a literary journal. It’s hard to believe B O D Y has been around for 10 years and I’m astounded by the quality and variety of writing in our archives. Herewith some of my favorites.

Favorites from the Last 10 Years, Selected by Joshua Mensch

It has been an enormous privilege to edit this magazine and I’m astounded by the sheer volume of great writing we’ve been entrusted with over the past ten years. The poems, stories, and essays in this selection represent, to me, what this project has really been about since the beginning: discovering great new writing.

Favorites from the Last 10 Years, Selected by Jan Zikmund

B O D Y, through its ties with translators, has always given space to intriguing voices from the past. When selecting my favourites on the occasion of the magazine’s ten-year anniversary, it seemed fitting to highlight three deceased poets – a Hungarian, Czech, and Russian – that deserve more attention.

Art

Michelle Sylliboy

Interview with L’nu interdisciplinary artist Michelle Sylliboy

Mi’kmaq/L’nu artist and author Michelle Sylliboy was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and raised on her traditional L’nuk territory in We’koqmaq, Cape Breton. Her published collection of photographs and L’nuk hieroglyphic poetry, Kiskajeyi—I Am Ready, won the 2020 Indigenous Voices Award. Jessica Mensch interviewed her this summer at her home.

Andy Van Dinh

Interview with artist Andy Van Dinh

One is immediately taken by the ethereal and symbolically rich nature of his work. His approach to drawing is so unique that in person it is difficult to tell what medium he is working in.