Thursday, January 31, 2013

Hovig Manoyan: Sickly

Green Buddha on a fruit stand
with mangos, strawberries, bananas,
blueberries, apricots, lemons, and oranges.
On good days, the Buddha serves you politely,
hands you a pear. It's like farmer's market
with free coconut and pineapple drinks.
Today, Buddha prays to Brahmin
to take greenness away. He barfs
hairballs on your horrible, horrible fruit bowl.

Hovig Manoyan has received honorable mention in this year's poetry competition, in the student category. He is 11 years old and in 6th grade at St. Gregory Hovsepian School, Pasadena, CA

Shant Dickran: Summer

School is
             no more

            or tests
            just playing
I want
                          R       is here--

And I'm excited!          

Shant Dickran has received honorable mention in this year's poetry competition, in the student category. He is 11 years old and in 6th grade at St. Gregory Hovsepian School, Pasadena, CA

Julien Ghouliance: Words

As I sat, you whispered,
"I hope you feel better."
What did you say?
Your words were suffocating.
I wasn't looking for comfort,
but your words were as loud
as a concert and as calming
as a fallen rainbow.

Julien Ghouliance has received honorable mention in this year's poetry competition, in the student category. He is 12 years old and in 7th grade at St. Gregory Hovsepian School, Pasadena, CA

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Rachel Megan Maclean: On the Mount

someday we will climb Mount Ararat and the
remains of Noah's skiff will splinter into our
thumbs and the pads of our fingertips, our
knees will be rubbed red raw by her crags, but
after a week we will sit on her summit Masis and with
throbbing hands and patellae, we will weep over the
clip-winged sparrows and the village of Van where our family
once fashioned jewelry on an estate that lives in
the dreams that were only our grandmother's
faintest and fondest of memories

Mama was only thirteen when the slaughter
began, she sat on the granite wall with a beautiful
box, but her family couldn't bring everything, they had to
leave things behind for the terror to take: the goats
and the uncles and the bodies not yet things they could
call corpses riddled with hatred, stuffed with hearts still
clenched in their fists in their fear in their crumpling
rib cages, still wronged, everything was wrong...

Armenian children are not apples in their mother's
eyes-- we are yellow-orange apricots dried by the
sun and cradled in the palms of those who cradled
us in their tender, weeping wombs; I am my
mother's apricot, and my wrinkles crinkle beneath my
skin because the children of a genocide are from
their first scream, old, and Mom, you and I are remnants
of a place and time raped but we have never allowed
ourselves to die because between the eyes, the muzzle
of a gun is just a molehill and

when we climb Ararat, sweet mother of our grandmothers, we
will watch time tunnel back to Siran and Keghanoush
drawing water and grinning in the sun, and sitting on her
peak Masis, we will weep over the sparrows and the village and
the apricots wrinkled in the dirt, lost from their mother's
palms and spotted from the moisture of our tears:
              someday we won't be the only ones who remember.

Rachel Megan Maclean, the winner for the student category is from Northside High School, Roanoke, VA.
She is 17 years old and studies with Mrs. Sally McFall

Honourable mentions to:
Julien Ghouliance 7th grade
Shant Dikran, and Hovig Manoyan, both 6th grade.
St. Gregory Hovsepian School, Pasadena, CA

Sunday, January 27, 2013

AGUSTÍN TAVITIAN: La Palabra Invicta

Todo es cuestión de tener un lugar
donde depositar el alma. Un paisaje,
el que sea, para alimentar los sueños
y viajar con fantasías y delirios.
Un lugar. Aunque el frío te penetre
y la tristeza y el miedo te dobleguen.
Un lugar pobre o derruido, alejado, aislado, abandonado.
Un lugar que te aloje, que te ampare.
Donde vivas, pienses, ames.
El lugar donde creas tu libertad de ser.

Tout est question d'avoir à soi
Un endroit où mettre l'âme
Un paysage, un endroit qui donnerait à vivre aux rêves
Et permettrait de voyager dans le fantasme et le délire
Un lieu. Même si le froid
Te pénètre,
Que tu sois
Gelé de peur et de tristesse
Un lieu pauvre ou démoli,
Distant, isolé, perdu,
Un lieu qui t’accueille toi,
Qui te protège,
Un endroit où tu vis, tu penses et aimes
Cet endroit où tu composes ta liberté d’exister

Agustin Tavitian

adaptation du texte espagnol par Sylvie M. Miller

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Christopher Janigian: Bastille Day

Trees bend here. 
Then venom spills into 
thick canals— 

they harbor 
lifeless barges. Men blow 
ghosts, burn lung—hands run 

through hair. The throat 
grows a rose—blooming blood 
by the villa. Words 

vein, roll from 
someone’s tongue. Bent 
god: flash by 

with your bullet vest. 
Do not watch this 
terrible sky— 

lightning cracks it 
with yellow saw-teeth. It is not 
for you. The dark-

skinned man stands, rises 
to popular flux: locked 
hands, perfect soldiers. Eye 

contact costs a fortune. Black-
eyed god: watch the high 
wheel of bone. 

O, stone and river. This place 
swells with soldiers. Again 
shadows swarm the streets: police 

in bombshell suits spit 
at helmeted heads, 
lazy tongues. We pass one 

mouth I will match: 
the dead sphinx. I will stare 
into the numb umbrella of a hood.

Christopher Janigian is a senior at Brown University concentrating in Literary Arts and English Literature. 

This poem has previously appeared in Issue VII, Fall 2012 of The Round, a Brown University literary publication.  

Sunday, January 20, 2013

William Saroyan: To the River Euphrates


Euphrates, which is mine, doth flow or not,
There where its mountains feed its rush and roar.
And through those hills and plains by most forgot,
And by these eyes not seen, for evermore
Euphrates swells and rolls majestically,
Or is now dry, and arid myth, a tale.
If this is so, the truth, so let it be.
In me Euphrates is; nor can it fail

To ride its bed and cool its burning earth
With drink, and mine as well. Of wing no flight
May end in graceless crash. No spirit’s mirth
May burn and die by heaven’s harshest light.
Euphrates flows, however it may be
That but in dreams these eyes its grace may see.

San Francisco, California

January 21, 1933

Saturday, January 19, 2013

William Saroyan: To the Voice of Shah-Mouradian


To the man this humble word:
Great soul, I your voice have heard.
If in fact I stand alone,
My clamor will the wrong atone.

Before your own my voice is small:
You sing, while my poor words must fall
Like so much sodden clay or mud
Into the rush of thought’s swift flood.

Yours is the flowing of the ancient soul.
While mine is but the lisping of the mind.
Yet if music the deaf cannot make whole,
The print shall give hearing to those not blind.


No art is lost and yours shall never be,
For when you sing, you sing at least for me.
And when at last my mortal day is done
Remember, friend, that I shall leave a son,
Tutored to seek the glory of his race
(Wherever he may go, to what strange place)
In your clear voice, which is the very pith
Of our old legend and our deathless myth.

And if the mother of his son shall be
A daughter of our ancient family,
I think she’ll teach him in his early years
That when you sing, though he be moved to tears,
He will yet know how once in strength we stood,
And stand forever in her motherhood.

San Francisco, California

January 14, 1933

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Ռուբէն Խաժակ։Քանի որ կամ

Քանի որ կամ՝
Պիտի պոռա՛մ,
Պիտի գոչե՛մ ու կանչե՛մ:

Քանի որ կամ՝
Պիտի գրեմ,
Միշտ յիշեմ ու պատմեմ:

Քանի որ կամ՝
Պիտի ըսեմ,
Մինչեւ մահ պիտ' բողոքեմ:

Պիտի պոռա՛մ,
Քանի որ կամ,
Քանի որ կան,
Քանզի կուրանան...

- Ռ. Խաժակ
Թորոնթօ, 2010

Լոյս տեսած է Թորոնթօ-ի «Արծիւ» պարբերաթերթին մէջ։

While I still am --
I shall scream,
I shall yell and declaim.

While I still am --
I shall blame,
Recall and reclaim.

While I still am --
I shall tell all,
Protest till the final fall.

I shall scream,
While I still am,
Against all
Those in vile denial...

.................. Rupen Khajag
Translated by Tatul Sonentz