Monday, December 9, 2019



Editor's note:

You know how it goes:
"It's time! It's time! It's time!". And then Dan Severn's WWF theme kicks in. Because you're about to experience something completely different, something that will fundamentally change your perception of reality. Something that will change your opinion on what art is capable of doing to mind.

Some loud words, huh? Well, gotta start with something. Why not start with some braggadocio? Never a bad thing.

Some backstory. Originally, Issue 16 was scheduled for September. The submissions were going strong and there was a lot of stuff to pick from. Over the course of August and early September i was ecstatic how well things were going - the traffic was solid, i had a hundred or so submission to make another issue right away. You can't imagine how happy i was that there was no extended hiatus between the issue as it happened throughout 18-19.

The other thing that made me really happy was that the submissions and decline reactions were far from the toxicity i had 17-18. Hell, i can make an issue entirely out of angry rejection letters, there were some nasty stuff. But this time, no one was making drama about the rejection of their works. It was very formal and very refreshing. It was also the root of the problem, but i failed to notice it.

I started to construct the issue in early September and somehow it didn't came together. It just wasn't working. Things refused to gel. It was just a bunch of stuff. Bunch of really cool stuff, but it wasn't working as an issue. It was just a bunch of stuff. And it really bugged me. I don't want Brave New Word to be a compendium of sacramental "bunch of stuff". BNW is like an Unkle album - a constellation of different visions making a starry sky and making room for further inspiration.

And so I've tried and tried and tried to make it right - rearranged the sequence over and over again, experimented with different post layouts, tried to mix things here and there - nothing worked. Around October 20th it was time to "...lose, and start again at your beginnings".

Doing Issue 16 Mark2 was somewhat dubious. I couldn't get away from the phantom of the failed iteration. Because of that, second incarnation of Issue 16 was mostly about chasing ghosts and trying to catch that particular "je ne sais quoi". There was no focus - just an attempt to fix something that didn't even existed. Naturally, it never even came close to being finished.

So in late November i wrote a post on Facebook explaining the situation. It wasn't like i had any explanations to do - after all, barely anyone even knows about Brave New Word. I just needed to let it out of my system.

Four days later Russell Jaffe made a comment on the post: "I am submitting because you are the bomb and I trust you as a real artist". This was it. This comment broke me into tears. It pointed out what was wrong all along.
The problem was that I've mixed up my dayjob with the rest of my life and in the process - pretty much lost my mojo. I've tried to approach work of passion as if it was business, just another facet of my day-to-day activity, some matter-of-fact rumblings with milestones.
Naturally, it wasn't working. It would never work like that - by trying to make the best issue, i've handled BNW as a product and it took out the very essense that made the magazine click.

What was i thinking? Probably, nothing in particular. That's how you give up - the grind and hustle are so tight, things just blend together. And it never occurs to you that you just did a u-turn. The heat is on and that's all that matters. And by the time you notice it by yourself - it's already too late. Hopefully, Russell reminded me what it was all about.
If The Great Russell Jaffe believes in me - that's gotta mean something. And I had something to prove.

The subtitle of this issue is "with a little help from my friends". It is an assorted collection of different artists presenting their artistic explorations - a kaleidoscope of sorts. Some of it is easygoing, some is laser-focused on going beyond the knowable. Without further ado - Brave New Word Issue 16.


Issue Line-up:

  1. Nils Geylen - oheyo
  2. Cecelia Chapman - Semiotic-pareidoliapophenia
  4. Claudio Parentela - 5 visual pieces
  5. Hiram Larew - Four Poems
  6. Elmedin Kadric - Matchstick Haikus
  7. Michael Estabrook - Nausea
  8. KB Nelson - Two Pieces
  9. Tom Snarsky - Five poems
  10. Christian ALLE - Ushas 1-7
  1. Russell Jaffe - 5 poems from Ip (unpublished)
  2. Piotr Szreniawski - Eight One Letter Pieces
  3. Yrik Max Valentonis - Three from Lost in Urban Landscaping
  4. Jenne Kaivo - Scattered Mushrooms
  5. J D Nelson - five poems
  6. Volodymyr Bilyk - Topical Chores
  7. Sacha Archer  - An Alphabet 
  8. Howie Good - 8 prose poems 
  9. Johannes S. H. Bjerg - Not Wind, Feeding Your Mother 
  10. Robert R. Thurman - Two visual pieces 

J D Nelson - five poems

J. D. Nelson (b. 1971) experiments with words in his subterranean laboratory. Visit for more information and links to his published poems. Nelson lives in Colorado.

Jenne Kaivo - Scattered Mushrooms

Jenne Kaivo has just dipped her hair in the coffee. Sometimes she wears her deep sea suit to make mischief of one kind and another.

Yrik Max Valentonis - Three from Lost in Urban Landscaping

Yrik-Max Valentonis wanders through the urban landscape seeking out fairy circles. He makes puppets so other people can see his imaginary friends. He steals apples to justify his philosophy. He is Baba Yaga's favorite grandson.

His comics and writings have appeared in magazines, e-zines, and the anthologies: Sinbad and the Winds of Destiny”, "Zombie Nation: St. Pete", "Animal Blessings", and "Divided Again".
He has M.F.A. in Poetry and Prose from the Naropa University and a B.A. in English and American Literature from the University of South Florida.

Piotr Szreniawski - Eight One Letter Pieces

Piotr Szreniawski, concrete poet, interested in metapoetry and in the space where poetry and comics interact. He publishes his poemics and later distributes them for example by running and leaving them at bookcrossing spaces.

About the works: "This is a series of one letter poems. Fonts created at were used. The backgrounds are photos from a train station, changed in Gimp ("cubism" filter)."

Russell Jaffe - 5 poems from Ip (unpublished)

Russell Jaffe is an edutainer and Literature Instructor for Course Hero.

Robert R. Thurman - Two visual pieces

Robert R. Thurman is an artist, musician and poet. Robert’s work has appeared in Coldfront Magazine, 3:AM Magazine, Columbia Journal, Eyedrum Periodically, Vlak 4, Ars Medica: A Journal of Medicine the Arts and Humanities, Rune: The MIT Journal of Arts and Letters, The Monarch Review, and Exquisite Corpse. His work has been exhibited in New York City, Los Angeles and London.

Johannes S. H. Bjerg - Not Wind, Feeding Your Mother

Johannes S. H. Bjerg: a Dane who writes in Danish and English simultaneously and mainly haiku and haiku related forms. 1 of 3 of the editors of Bones - “Journal for contemporary haiku” (, and sole editor of “the other bunny - for the other kind of haibun” ( and “One Link Chain” -  a blog for solo linked verse and haiku sequences ( Has published several books:

Howie Good - 8 prose poems

Howie Good is the author most recently of What It Is and How to Use It from Grey Book Press and Spooky Action at a Distance from Analog Submission Press. He co-edits the journals Unbroken and UnLost.

Sacha Archer - An Alphabet

Sacha Archer is a Canadian writer, visual artist and ESL Instructor currently residing in Ontario. He was the recipient of the 2008 P.K. Page Irwin Prize for his poetry and visual art, and in 2010 he was chosen to participate in the Elise Partridge Mentor Program. His work has appeared in journals such as filling Station, ACTA Victoriana, h&, illiterature, NōD, and Experiment-O. His most recent chapbooks are Detour (Spacecraft Press, 2017), The Insistence of Momentum (The Blasted Tree, 2017), and Acceleration of the Arbitrary (Grey Borders, 2017). One of his online manifestations is his blog at

Volodymyr Bilyk - Topical Chores

Volodymyr Bilyk is a poet from Ukraine who writes in English. He follows Ezra Pound's "Make It New" and considers Pink Fairies song "Do It" to be a quite adequate description of his artistic intentions.  

His latest book "Roadrage" was published by Zimzalla in 2018. His other works include "To When Tea Ties Hence to Wank It Too" / "Eminent Means of Basil Dado Hem-Welt" (2015), "Heartbeat, Footclick, Machine Gun Vocalizes" (2016), "Eellogofusciohipoppokunurious" (2017) and "The Songs of The Great Tits" (2018).

Christian ALLE - Ushas 1-7

Since the 90’s, Christian ALLE, painter, collagist and photographer is active in the networks of mail art as a participant on the various projects, but especially as publisher and animator of Nada Zero, information magazine and free participation in the spirit of FLUXUS.

Tom Snarsky - Five poems

Tom Snarsky is a special education math teacher at Malden High School in Malden, Massachusetts, USA. He is the author of Threshold, a chapbook of poems available from Another New Calligraphy. He lives in Chelsea, MA with his wife Kristi and their two cats, Niles and Daphne.

KB Nelson - Two Pieces

KB Nelson is a Canadian writer who thrives in the intersection of art and science. She has won awards in both poetry and short fiction, and is published in a variety of journals and anthologies. KB has resided from coast to coast in Canada, in Arizona, and in New Zealand. A graduate of Simon Fraser University’s Southbank writing program, she currently lives in Greater Vancouver.

Michael Estabrook - Nausea

Michael Estabrook small press poet since the 1980s striving always for greater clarity and concision rendering language more succinct and precise more accessible and appealing a Sisyphean adventure for sure. Retired now writing more and working more outside just noticed two Cooper’s hawks staked out in the yard or rather above it which explains the nerve-wracked chipmunks. The Poet’s Curse, A Miscellany is a recent collection (The Poetry Box, 2019).

Elmedin Kadric - Matchstick Haikus

Elmedin Kadric is a widely published minimalist/haiku poet writing out of Helsingborg, Sweden. His first collection, buying time (2017), was published my Red Moon Press. His website:

Hiram Larew - Four Poems

Hiram Larew's poems are waifs that have found shelter in North of Oxford, River and South Review, Contemporary American Voices, Voices Israel and elsewhere. His fourth collection, Undone, was published by FootHills Publishing in 2018. On Facebook at Hiram Larea, Poet and at POETRYXHUNGER.COM.

Claudio Parentela - 5 visual pieces

Born in Catanzaro(1962-Italy) where he lives and works…Claudio Parentela is an
illustrator,painter,photographer,mail artist,cartoonist,collagist,journalist free lance...Active
since many years in the international contemporary art scene.He has collaborated&he
Born in Catanzaro(1962-Italy) where he lives and works…Claudio Parentela is an
illustrator,painter,photographer,mail artist,cartoonist,collagist,journalist free lance...Active
since many years in the international contemporary art scene.He has collaborated&he
Born in Catanzaro(1962-Italy) where he lives and works…Claudio Parentela is an
illustrator,painter,photographer,mail artist,cartoonist,collagist,journalist free lance...Active
since many years in the international contemporary art scene.He has collaborated&he

Claudio Parentela is an illustrator,painter,photographer,mail artist,cartoonist,collagist,journalist free lance...Active since many years in the international contemporary art scene.

Nils Geylen - oheyo

Nils Geylen was raised between the arctic and the equator and currently stuck in Belgium. He works in literary inclusion and literacy promotion. His creative writing currently investigates topics such as human and machine behavior and the oppressive qualities of culture and history. He is interested in the illegible and or the incomprehensible. Faced with the limitations of print, he prefers online journals and is always looking to escape the lexical, phrasal or narrative constraints of writing in favor of a more experiential delivery.


NORMAN CONQUEST is a visual artist, writer, and publisher.  “The Room” is an excerpt from his forthcoming book, smells like teen ‘pataphysics (Black Scat Books)

Cecelia Chapman - Semiotic-pareidoliapophenia

Cecelia Chapman is an investigative artist activist and video poet whose work examines the image and the long range effects on consciousness. Her video and works on paper emerge from a deep curiosity regarding the fluid connection between inner and outer knowledge, perception and consciousness. She is from California and based temporarily in Massachusetts.
About the works:
"Semiotic-pareidoliapophenia explores writing: metaphor and magic in the abstract 2019. The experience of reading meaningful signs and symbols in rock lines, paint splatters, leaf mold, skid marks, scars, cracks. Finding connection and pattern in random data. Lanaquarelle paper, watercolor 10 x 14 in., 26 x 36 cm. gouache, personal rubber stamps, graphite, ink."