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Issue V – TRANSLATING LANGUAGE AND SOUND – Eli Tareq El Bechelany-Lynch



I’ve been looking for you again / across
the chatter along the deck / in the
ripples the steel ship leaves / when the
bow breaks the water’s surface // 

I learn to keep the time / by parsing
seconds / learn how many to steal / so a
minute looks whole enough / I’d like to
think you’d be proud // 

to find sweetness in more than cane / more
than granules / is the gift / to play the
thief / and guard joy in life / is the
present / that is seized / not given / not
for us // 

I used to think / that the difference
between life and death / was just motion /
but to walk along the ocean’s floor / to
feel gravity melt away / time has no
governance / below the waves ||



I saw you at the station the other day / I
was tracking the hours along the steel
rails / padding my schedule on each side /
minutes flush with minutes / seconds
squeezed to seconds //
I mark time in the chatter of the platform
/ by the child who asks her mother / if
pigeons go to heaven / or the group of
students yelling / over the screeching of
the train / 

I want to believe in something / like
Lemuria or Atlantis / in a city of pure
gold / where the sunlight glints off the
buildings / I let the minutes move apart /
let seconds go slack / 

By next year / the tracks will be gone /
How will I ever keep the time? ||



Natasha Ramoutar is a writer of Indo-Guyanese descent by way of Scarborough (Ganatsekwyagon). Her first collection of poetry Bittersweet was published in 2020 by Mawenzi House and she was a co-editor of FEEL WAYS, an anthology of Scarborough writing. She currently serves as a senior editor at Tales & Feathers Magazine. Her most recent project was TYTYTY, a game made through Hand Eye Society's programming. It Keeps Us Here, her second collection of poetry, will be out in 2024 through Wolsak & Wynn.

Kevin Ramroop is an experimental artist and community arts facilitator born and based in Malvern. Shaped by the diverse migratorial history of his heritage and community, his artistic pursuits are as multitudinous in medium as the cultures that inspire them - with work spanning across music, film, sound design, poetry, fiction, public installation, and community arts facilitation.

Kevin is also the co-founder/music and writing mentor for the WaveArtCollective, an interdisciplinary group of artists and mobilizers creating community-engaged art and educational programming to foster Scarborough’s creative scene. Their recent work includes “Where the Trees Speak”, an interactive audiovisual installation for Nuit Blanche Scarborough 2022; “The Space Between Waves”, a 3-part, sound-based narrative collage completed during their 2021 artist residency with the Doris McCarthy Gallery; and “The New Normal on the Margins”, an art book featuring the culminating works of emerging youth photographers and writers who were mentored by the Collective as part of the 2021 WaveArtFellowship.