Winter Contest Winners Announced!

The Columbia Journal is pleased to announce the winners of its 2016 Winter Contest! Each award comes with a prize of $500 (per category), and the winner(s) of each category will have their work published in the forthcoming issue (Issue 55) of Columbia Journal, which


In other words, a whore — Shelley Puhak’s DETAINED: A Genealogy…

By Shelley Puhak DETAINED: A Genealogy of Whores and Wolves Editor’s Note. We’re re-posting this piece from Columbia Journal’s print Issue 54 at her request, and because it’s timely. We hope you enjoy it. 1. The Buttonhook Men turned her eyelids inside out to check for

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Atar Hadari’s It’s Not Your Fault

By Atar Hadari   It’s Not Your Fault   When they see your face and smile It’s not your colour scheme they see, Not your teeth, your eyes, your style But every name their grandchildren will hear   Walking in the gate at school. Every

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Tony Concannon’s A Brief Opportunity

by Tony Concannon Editor’s note: while the Election & Politics Feature received an incredible volume of outstanding submissions, our guest editor and our staff had to decide which pieces fit our vision for the feature. A lot of great work went into pieces that we

(Politics) Dmitry Borshch’s illustrations: Short-Fingered Vulgarian?

By Dmitry Borshch   More of Dmitry’s illustrations can be found at and         More of Dmitry’s illustrations can be found at and Dmitry Borshch was born in Dnepropetrovsk, studied in Moscow, today lives in New York. His

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(Politics) Ken Walker’s translation of Georg Herwegh’s To The Federal Labor Unions

By George Herwegh Translated by Ken Walker Author’s note: This translated poem has been brought into English from the German, by Georg Herwegh: 19th century poet and letter writer, philosopher of sorts, friend to Marx and Engels, who has barely published in English. The poem comes from Herwegh’s first book

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(Politics) Becca Shaw Glaser’s I Look Around My Party There’s So Much White, and two more poems

I look around my party there’s so much white By Becca Shaw Glaser skin and everyone drinking or laughing parties aren’t so bad it’s just that I’m older now and angrier or less angry and I worry I’m going crazy because I’m trapped by my

Alia Ali

(Politics) Alia Ali’s transglobal textiles: People of Pattern / Cast No Evil

by Alia Ali This series is an important platform in itself to participate in dialogue. It is for this reason that I chose to continue with this style and develop it in regards to indigenous textiles of particular regions, in a new series called the

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(Politics) Steven Roiphe’s Naturalisation Exam & Joobin Bekhrad’s Response

By Steven Roiphe Editor’s note: our guest editor, Joobin Bekhrad, has volunteered his own answers to the Naturalisation Exam, in italics. Read more, below. What is your Country of Origin? (If Africa, complete Part D, “Renunciation of Plausible Muslim Heritage,” and continue the Exam. If Middle


(Politics) Duff Allen’s Amerikan Politicking Kurtains 1, 2, 3

by Duff Allen Presidential Motorcade Limousine Game The ten car motorcade spirits the President of the United States to the next presidential location. Part of the unsuccessful importance of this is to create a moving image filmed in real time which creates for the millions

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(Politics) Poems “Restive” and “Fortune of the Righteous” by Hugh Anderson

by Hugh Anderson RESTIVE The throngs are restive, no longer enamored of the circuses, no longer so sure words matter.  Sucking the last morsel of fish off bony fingers, eyeing the neighbours’ crumbs of bread, they expect someone to work a miracle  done once, and millions

Bernard Hayman

(Politics) On Anti-Blackness with Activist, Writer, Fulbright Scholar Bernard Hayman and Shaun Lau

This interview was originally published on, read & listen here: Shaun Lau is an Asian-American occasional writer and host of the film and social issues podcast No, Totally! Follow him on Twitter, @NoTotally, and find his work at . Bernard A. Hayman

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(Politics) Today’s Eve, by DB Rhys

by DB Rhys IMAGINE ME, moving around a cramped apartment, on the mend. I look like an old man, but I’m not. I feel like it’s been centuries, it hasn’t been, but it feels like it has. Depending on the time of day, if you

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(Politics) American Mercury, by Carolyn Williams-Noren (With Editorial Response)

by Carolyn Williams-Noren Selected by Guest Editor Joobin Bekhrad (Headlines from the magazine, June 1932 to May 1939) American Mercury America’s Number One Fool The Truth About Hair Tonics Is Roosevelt a Socialist? Are Dogs People? What is Mussolini? What About “The Revolution”? The Boast

Future World Imagery Scary

(Politics) THIS IS A REALLY GREAT STORY, by Gerry Mandel (With Editorial Response)

by Gerry Mandel Selected by Guest Editor Joobin Bekhrad Mr. Bekhrad: In a situation like this, I think I’d ask myself, What would Omar Khayyam do? Warm evenings in Costa Rica, ‘colourful rum drinks’, and nubile housekeepers named Marcella sound right up his alley. Count me

(Politics) The Pope must canonize a Patron Saint of Rats right now

by Jennifer Clark Oh, saints of sudden death, miscarriage of justice and babies, saints of running sores and Polish dishes, we are running out of time. We must strengthen the saints among us and canonize quickly a saint for protection from rats. Benjamin, Lilly, Jason,

A drawing of a sheep

(Politics) “The US Election: a Timeless View from Abroad” & accompanying poem, by Dr. Mario Petrucci

By Dr. Mario Petrucci “I’ll drink to that, Mario. Martin Luther King quoted Omar Khayyam, as has Bill Clinton, so I don’t see why the candidates can’t just crack open a bottle of fine Shiraz wine and let it all ‘sparkle from their lips’. That’s

A picture of a monkey and a human

(Politics) Donald Trump’s Response to The Little Prince, by Judith Terzi

by Judith Terzi “There goes the gluten-intolerant vote.” -Guest editor Joobin Bekhrad “Goodbye, says the fox. Here is my secret…One sees only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye.” The Little Prince, Antoine Saint-Exupéry We do have baobabs, little man. We call

(Politics) Editor’s Choice: Make America Literal Again by Krista Cox

Make America Literal Again By Krista Cox Selected by Guest Editor Joobin Bekhrad   There’s this guy on the TV everywhere I go these days. His voice grates on me like parmesan on a Caesar, but not the green plastic cylindrical kind that Mom always

(Politics) The Populist by Jack Belch; Response by Guest Editor Joobin Bekhrad

Populism by Jack Belch The smile so warm, so firm the grasp yet eyes so cold the heart is told the hand is but an uncoiled asp. We know the truth without reflection: someone is running for election.     A response by our guest

Joobin Bekhrad

(Politics) A Note from Joobin Bekhrad, Our Guest Editor

Hello! It’s a pleasure and honour to be serving as the Guest Editor of the Columbia Journal from now until the presidential elections in early November. I’m incredibly thankful to the Journal’s fabulous team for having had me in mind for the gig, and am

(Politics) Submit Now to the Election & Politics Feature

Do you want to be president someday? How do you feel about monarchies and queens? Have you survived an upbringing in a dictatorship? Submit The first themed feature for Columbia Journal’s website is “The Election & Politics”. Please submit to us, until November 7th, 2016

Letter from the Editor; Winter Contest; Fall Feature

By Andrew H. Miller, Online Managing Editor Dear Readers, When Columbia Journal was founded by its graduate writing program students in 1977, two central tenets were installed: first, that the journal staff must fill the pages with outstanding & promising poetry and prose, and second,

About the election & politics feature

Do you want to be president someday? How do you feel about monarchies and queens? Have you survived an upbringing in a dictatorship?


The first themed feature for Columbia Journal’s website is “The Election & Politics”. Please submit to us, until November 7th, 2016 (a deliberately chosen date), your poetry, essays, nonfiction, fiction, translated works, art, music, film, literary rants, polemics, prayers, and speeches concerning whatever burns brightest in your heart when we say the words “election” or “politics”.

Please keep in mind that we are a publication of literature and art, and we will publish works appropriate to those categories – we are not the news, and we are not a blog.

Guest editor Joobin Bekhrad will review the best submissions, and may comment on the ones he chooses for us to publish. We are grateful for his involvement, and hope to learn from his unique perspective as a writer and editor.