Shara Lunon

Shara Lunon aka Sha-Raw the panther paw, aka RaRa bird no.3, has dedicated herself to the art of voice. She studied Ethnomusicology and Vocal Performance at the University of Florida, focusing on the operatic technique. During and since, she has experimented in the vocal stylings of electronic/dance, hip-hop, and R&B in such groups as MSNRA, Jovian Junction Orchestra, and Wizard Women. Shara has also been a member of the Church of Holy Colors/Milagros art collective, and aided in the formation of the Elestial Sound record label. Recently relocated to the big apple, she hopes to further her work in codifying her style of "hiphopera".

mal·func·tion // malˈfəNG(k)SH(ə)n/ - Filmed and edited by Rose Vastola 2014 Words and featuring Shara Lunon / Community, Cultural, Condense, Convergent, Constitution, this video examines misconnections and malfunction within reality and society. Between interactions with each other and within our selves. The video features Shara Lunon a Vocalist whose words and appearance is created and manipulated to show true beautiful and a dysfunctional decay. This piece acts as a experiment to digital media as it combines four major video editing softwares and modeling programs.

Artwork by Kodi Fabricant

Artwork by Kodi Fabricant

Translation from Portuguese:

At the bottom of a well, memories arrive.

In silence, you are blind

You forget that your body exists;

You forget that your life exists,

Like the sky forgets it has clouds

Like an apple forget it has seeds

Like the air forget it makes the wind.

A river of memories flood

Blinding all senses

Are the images happy? Are they not?

At the bottom of the well

All you can see is yourself.

Untitled

The stars are falling all around my bed, 

You kissed not me, but one instead.

Did our lights confuse? For I am here.

That star was dead. Only shiny and shear.

Littering eyes, of sights so near.

It glints so pinched; so intentionally instant you forget,

The excitement.

Blues

Again, love again blues said mr L Hughes. 

Again, love again blues I say it in twos 

For three is sacred and one is just too few. 

I say it from my lips to the ears of you, 

If blue be the hue then let royal be the cue.

Look to the skies and midnights for truths.

Add in some navy and periwinkle for views,

For the shades of it only goes for miles

Kind of like stings of pearls on have their styles

If it came to it, the my lips would only smile

At the tint and hint of the bluest of piles

A love like this is like Coltrane and Naima; 

Like breath of Dizzy or the hand of Fatima. 

Press against the palms feel the heat of ambition 

Watch it explode continuously infinite.

If I am dead, then all this is done.

Like the stars burning bright my light will still come.

I let the waves take my journey to the extent of the one 

Sanders play that horn so my chords can strum 

Sing  the songs so rarely sung,

And quest for love beyond bells rung.

My arrow is aimed at the blazing sun and,

When my wings melt then I’ll have begun,

You see to be kissed in burns I must have flown

From the wisp of the clouds my light is shown

Reflecting the radiance of what once was,

Spinning the wheels of color from below and above.

If blue is the color, I’ll take it with gold,

So that I kiss the sky endlessly bold.

Kiss the Crete- All women's skate tour (music by Hi-Rule ft Shara)

Live performance of MSNRA at Medusa Studios in Gainesville, Florida. Filmed and Recorded by Dave Melosh and friends

Sem título (Letícia) 

Untitled (Leticia)

Me disse com uma voz, ou, com

as palavras de que meu coração sair. 

I said with a voice, or with the words that my heart left.

Eu ouvi ou eu li que ele foi 

pra um outro amor. 

I heard or I read that it went to another love.

Me disse que eu sinto nada, ou,

eu sente tudo. 

I said that I feel nothing or I feel everything.

Eu me lembrar, não, talvez eu esquece se ele foi,

ou ele ficou na mesa numa fruteira. 

I remember, no, maybe I forget if it went, 

or if it stayed on the table in a fruit bowl.

A fruta do meu espírito. 

The fruit of my spirit.

O sol ascenda, e ele começa bater

The sun ignites, and it begins to beat

Mas nunca comigo.

But never with me

Só vive quando ta longe de mim. 

It only lives when it is distant from me.

Bem longe de mim.

Greatly distant from me.

Black History Month

Got a chip of the world sittin’ on my shoulders.

Feelin’ pressure in layers folding over.

Weight of expectation from this dark pearl growin’ bolder,

As my heart of metal is only gettin’ colder.

So I found a tribe that steeps its growin’ culture,

From Zebulun to Zulu, young elders becomin’ older.

Savin’ black history, present, and black future,

‘Cuz what they teachin’ today lacks stature.

So fuck this ‘given’ month I do it avidly.

From sun up to sun down I sing it gladly:

We shall overcome but won't hit prosperity.

Like misery and hate, ignorance keeps company.

Worse is that it goes unnoticed.

Blinded the eyes through packaged doses.

Dope dog sniffed out, ass’ shitty grosses.

Gots the habit now, and the cycle keeps goin’.

For in the eyes of Uncle Sam it's cheaper to sell it.

Keep Uncle Ben down then send him to jail; it

Drives more than Ms. Daisy, but to Davis it compels this

Fight for freedom ‘cuz the civilities are just basics.

For it is true more people are hurtin’ than are eating.

For it is real that more profit is gained in killin’ than in feedin’ them,

And we hold these truths to be self-evident.

Beyond that, we hold them to be relevant and prevalent.

And it’s amazin’ how it’s gone on for centuries,

And how suppression imbeds itself in genetic memories.

It goes so much deeper than veins so tainted,

Ghettos and projects are only where they placed us.

The mind is what has been so deviated, so wasted

Conditionin’ then degraded to demean Negro races.

Thoughts of black brutes rally against their brethren,

Turnin’ in their brothas and sistas thinkin’ they gon’ win.

Your chains are the same but are within,

And maybe I don't know shit ‘cuz I'm no African.

My name is formed x and has no sentiment.

My skin is only ‘dipped’ with pigment, like it’s not legit

But I am at no cost anyone’s victim.

I am not a big-lipped big-butt untamed mane.

I am not the image of uncivilized, criminalized, or untrained.

I am no Aunt Jemima, no mistress, nor slave;

I scream of beauty and chant of change.

I stand here, eyes opened, glaring at you.

I know who I am, where I'm from, and what I do.

And since I am stripped of my heritage I'll make mine new.

Breakin’ down the box to sojourn the truth.

And if I’m just the pour ghetto chil’,

Then you fucked up teachin’ me to read.

Learnin’ for myself how to write and think.

This ‘given’ month you so admirably beseech,

Is just to mask your pile of shit that endlessly reeks.

Stainin’ the sheets, red white and brown.

It’s airin’ out for the public to see now.

 



Raychel Reimer

Raychel Reimer is a freelance artist based out of Vancouver, Canada. She studied Media Arts at Sheridan Institute in Toronto where she specialized in documentary film-making. A lover of many platforms, Reimer is not only an award-winning documentary filmmaker, but also a photographer, writer, and mixed media artist, and she continues to create raw, non-fiction art in all of these different mediums.

100 Tides is a poetry and polaroid project that Reimer completed in the span of 100 days. Every day she took one instant photograph and paired it with one poetry piece she wrote, with the result being an image that metaphorically reflects each day. 100 Tides is a journey through heartbreak, mental illness, and self-love. 

 

Marianne McKey

Marianne Mckey is a recent graduate from The New School's MFA program in creative writing. Her work can be found at The Los Angeles Review, Storm Cellar, and Fiction Fix. In 2010, Marianne was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She currently lives in Brooklyn. Below is one of her short stories titled "Orbit".


Orbit

I'm afraid that if I look up at you and say, "This sucks ," you'll look back and say, "You're right. Let's not."

I’m afraid you’ll forget those moments. Those moments when we looked at each other and it felt like we had our own personal orbit.  Like a galaxy had sprung around us and our spin about the other a type of metronome for eternity, but we were just in bed, just under the covers, just on the subway, going over bridge, pointing to that stained-glass water tower in Dumbo, just looking at each other. 

But the things that pass silently between us can’t be quoted.  Can’t be used in response to, “This sucks.”  How can I tell you about that feeling?  That feeling I get when I think of everyone leaving the party and when everyone’s gone, you’re not there after they leave, not there to help pick up bottles, not there to brush your teeth alongside me.  How can I tell you about how that makes me feel a type of sadness I thought I was done with, and in this moment I am most sad to know that I might have to feel that way again, and that it’s because of you. 

You want me to be the particle, the debris shuttled through your atmosphere, the meteoric blurr.  You want to be the planet, the one to cast the other off, to send it back to dark, quiet space, or to eat it up all together, just fire and dust. 

You want to be the bigger thing because you are that dream deferred, that suckled up sweetness. That crusted scab of skin. Tested. Burned. You've already bubbled and spit. Oozed open and pussed out. a peninsula of skin cobble over and sealed up, acknowledged but not spoken of.  Now your pain is like mine, the pain of feeling you might have to feel the pain again, that your scars might heal over and be licked once more with the fire.  You wear your pain like armor, just to prove that some things can't be took twice.

"I didn't say I want it to stop.  I said I want it to stop sucking."

I don't know what to do with your pain but to pounce. To coo and soothe and whisper to you all the sweet little nothing's I want for myself. But my empathy is incomplete un-evolved. There is something in you like recoil that hasn't been wound all the way in me yet. The soft touch is gnashed at because it is the only thing close. Systemic flinch. With you it’s like everything is only that.  Moments do not transcend, they are pockets in amber that never touch.  You are not just one thing.  You are many things stratified.  I can feel all of you at once, but in a single moment only one thing shows.  By Wednesday the gravity I felt on Monday is liquid, molten, spreading out beneath me like water from a leak.  I can feel my heart skewed by that helix of fear and lessons learned. I don't know if I could go through learning these things again.

I’m afraid you'll look back and say,"It's not worth it." The forever, "No thank you," or worse the, "Thank you but no."

I should take my licks and leave like all the other salty dogs. But I can see your mind, full of that silty sort of soil. Thick and soft. That silken swirl in the riverbed that blots out the bottom. Opacity is only for the self. I know what those emotional stones look like at the bottom, how your thoughts dart like minnows.  Their scales are gilded and glinting even in the dark. I don't mind the mud, the mess. My mind is not much better but there needs to be something more than just being understood. What is it to know yourself if you can never effect change?

 I planted a part of me in you, and we grew it until the roots mingled with the veins and tendons and they wrapped themselves around the heart like a gentle noose keeping it in place.  It sprung from our nail beds and open pores and it was in our blood and bile and beauty, but then you pulled away.  That part I shared, I thought inextricable from the rest.  I gave you a piece of the thing that made me real.  Which is sometimes an amorphous vapor, white and milky, puffing me up and rounding me out.  Which is sometimes a thick-skinned egg, hard and leathery, but filled with that golden-goo yolk that sits warm and slippery deep inside.  Which is sometimes a river, quick and cold, coursing through me like something possessed and powerful.  That thing we’ve been so inclined to call a soul, and I gave part of it to you to grow but you left it to rot.  A river dammed up.  An egg slit and seeping.  A gust of wind to dispel a fog. 

"What about me isn't enough?"

"Enough, enough what?"

"To be worth it?"

I'm afraid to look up at you and say,"Don't answer. I know all this. That you would make me feel this way, like my brain is squirming. You make me anxious about being anxious. You want it like that. If I’m not careful I’ll be the thing eaten up in your orbit, charred in your atmosphere, when I need to be the thing flung away, floating on with focused motion, propelled. However, I can see the bottom and I don't mind the mess. But this sucks for me, and you have to care about that for this to function," I'm afraid when I look you in the eyes and demand consideration, demand that you see me, that you value me, that I become a planet next to yours, you'll look back at me and say, "This sucks, let's not."

Harriet Plouffe

Harriet Plouffe is a writer and artist living in Jersey City. Her work has appeared in Two Serious Ladies, alternet.orgtruth-out.org, and the Rag Blog. Below is a sampling of her poetry. 


Almost an elegy

A two-fold terror of indifference,

tucked away for two and twenty, recovered

only recently to sense anew that

remorse long since blurred by distraction,

duties and the desire

to feel far from the fate of almost;

but since drifted much further to where

almost is wintered out of reach.

 

All the way to almost! Took the two-fold

terror to send for the memory of the type of

bravery it took to get to almost, almost

took it right out of me, after

almost I recoiled,

since almost not

nothing, but not nearly, not quasi, certainly

not nigh only now conditioned everlasting

to the conditional, a chant, a prayer, a

rosary to chew on, distractedly, an

amber necklace, teething, stiff-lipped

on each bead of almost.

 

(And yet—that was me! That was—almost!)

My ship life

I’m supposed to be dead by now

by my own code of honour:

 

Failure at 12: made the mistake of not jumping ship.

Failure at 13: but then downsized to a smaller boat.

Failure at 14: opportunity to debark, refused!

Failure at 17: watched the sails fall, lazily fell onto closest life raft (should have forced

       myself to swim).

[MISSED: DEADLINE #1!]

Failure at 19: offended that my talents aboard this raft went unrecognized, certain it

       was because they were resented, I stuck my ass in the air and my head

       in the sea, swallowed too much water.

[MISSED: DEADLINE #2!]

Failure at 20: kept drinking seawater while swimming towards the wrong island on

       purpose.

Failure at 21: after deportation from island refused to board any ships from old land.

Failure at 22: decided to stare at ships instead of boarding them.

Failure at 23: on dry land, fell into a hole and was too embarrassed to cry ‘helpf!’

       (Someone might have heard me).

[MISSED! DEADLINE #3!]

Failure at 24: remained on dry land, got hit by a car.

Failure at 25: stuck my head in the sand

[MISSED! DEADLINE #4!]

Failure at 26: failed to pull head out (could here have built a new boat)

Failure at 27: I guess I’ll just walk along the boardwalk.

Attempted redemption at 28: well, I bought a little boat-model kit…

Failure at 28: still haven’t put it together.

Bagatelles pour une baguette

His literary idol was passing through town

with his wife, we were the hosts, and they—

so shy it’s rude! could barely speak—

so shy—they couldn’t admit they were hungry but then

when I cooked they ate it all—

clearly famished—enthusiastically accepted

offers for seconds only there weren’t any—

so shy—they stayed in bed until noon when they

finally realized we weren’t going anywhere and

reluctantly emerged though

in realizing this was what they were waiting for I’d suggested it

but by then they were already out of bed—

so—shy yet still wearing their pajamas, staring into coffee mugs

so shy—yet finished the milk.

I telegraphed telepathically—take them out—

to the bakery—what would I have? a baguette—

that’s all, and when they returned

I was back in the back, nursing again and

working up a real appetite—I was famished—

real nursing hunger—I was fantasizing

about that baguette

and when I finally emerged they

were too shy to greet me, kept their heads

down as they always did—so shy

they couldn’t acknowledge entrances

or exits like last night—so shy that

because when I’d said goodnight I’d

said it to the room, that is to everyone—

so shy—even that was too ambiguous, or ambiguous enough

to ignore—so shy they “weren’t sure” I’d meant it actually

for them or if they did just too

shy to respond—the shyness of really

terrified people—so shy there wasn’t room for anyone else’s

shyness—which was maybe why I

resented it—being suction-cupped into the

extrovert—so shy it’s aggressive—yes—

aggressive—it must have been an act—

it must have been calculated—it shouldn’t have gone

unpunished—this calculated play for power—the kind

of shyness that behind closed doors

shit-talks you with spiteful glee—aggressive!

that’s what it is—and as I figured this out having just been

met with that non-greeting, wondering

when his literary idol and wife would be leaving, I

went to the bread basket and—

so shy they’d eaten my baguette.

Pome

Why write a poem

       When I could just

              Look in the mirror

All day

       From different angles

              And make faces at myself

While thinking?

Talksink think

You know what really makes me think I’m an artist

            is standing there washing dishes

            not the washing but the running water

            my mind wanders so perfectly

            it feels good like a good gallop

It’s almost like I’m making

            the things I’m thinking about

            making at that moment

            like it feels like

            the process of writing

            is happening right there at the sink

            like I’m the monk-like

            writer of my monastic fantasies

            like the writing itself is something I like

            do without trying to like

            do every day it’s like the running water like

            I mean the words like horses like

            everyone's already said I’m

            like a true Californian I mean

            better at writing than at talking

            better then at the word than at the

referent is to the word as

            a something sort of like that, like

            a similar simile of the Californian to

            the smile itself, a phony, I’m saying

            I like the word written, thank you

            like it matters anyway

            to be liked, to get a job like

            the ones where your written words should lead

            you know you’ll be interviewed you

            know that don’t you you’ll have

            to be interviewed you give your

            job talk they care about how you are so

            you’ll have to work on that you

            know your writing is

(like water?)

            much stronger than your—

            what I mean is you come off better

            on paper than in person

—Like a true Californian, like

            horses in Ojai or like

            buses, the 24, say, Divisadero, like

            that? ‘cause there’s a difference

—But what are your plans do you

            plan to go on the market? To live

            like that? Well on the one horse

            it wouldn’t be a bad life if it were

            handed to me like the reins to a

            horse, like if I could do that

            and have free reign, it’s just that

            with something like that that others like

            more than I do, which is to say I like

            it but not as much as I like

            standing at the sink if you know

            what I mean, it’s something I’ve always liked

            preferred to everything, so the

            second horse on the other horse

            The only horse I like

            I said the only question is

Would I have time every day to stand at the sink?