IHRAF Publishes - Youth
Uma Menon, EDITOR
Call for Submissions
SUBMIT TO IHRAFPUBLISHES@GMAIL.COM
IHRAF Publishes-Youth is new platform initiated by IHRAF Youth Fellow Uma Menon for writers under the age of 21 to submit poetry, creative nonfiction, short fiction, essays or any other format that comes from the heart, and focuses on social and activist themes. We base our work on the values of beauty, sincerity, vulnerability and engagement, and hope that these will be reflected in the submissions!
If you would like to be included on our platform, please submit writing to the Editor, Uma Menon, at email@example.com, and make certain that you note in the subject line “Youth Submission.” There is currently no pay for publication, but all successful entries will be promoted on our Facebook page (3000+ followers), via our monthly Mailchimp newsletter (2500+ recipients) and will be considered for print publication when we anthologize our best work.
by given maleka
The greatest hope of humanity lies beneath the depths of our differences.
How long we suffer to differ, and the pain we encounter when we don’t respect uniqueness. What makes us proud of our nature and difference, our old golden grey and white from the pureness of life and age. What makes our natures and our shallow spans that we incite in our deepest acrimonies to widen and defeat our waves and roots of stigmas to prior means of common myths.
It is all acknowledgements from genres and curiosities we have inherited from our upcoming. Like one root, the philosophy of upcoming has spanned the differences of uniqueness onto overflowing nerves. We genuinely establish fronts apart from the common core.
But what had to enrich the pain of creation and birth, had to be creation that healed the pain of being. At least a creation different from common and usual creations. A creation buttered in the likeness of the mother of creation.
Our nature sometimes causes pain and places shame on the little creations who had no choice to the kind of butter they received. Making them only miserable of being less important and wrong and unjustified as themselves. Due to our violations to other differences and sometimes our inferior views.
We tend to forget that we also never had the chance to choose our differences and how we become. It was all the process and purpose of the life-giver. Although we often fail ourselves to some realities and although we fail to entertain their questions and meaning unto humanity, we wonder what would happen if only we had been different from the form we have inherited. Whether we would be the same.
What equity and equality would we desire? What norms and stigmas would we want to change and even eliminate in our lives?
No humanity is a curse to human greatness, composed of all our differences. Rather, the greatness we enlist and proclaim every day is the very greatness enriched upon our sorts through uniqueness. Every being and difference fulfils greatness, even though we sometimes ignore the worth of certain aspects that we have acquired.
We fail to see that our differences are only what we had to become. Like a bread buttered to be flavoured. No matter white or brown, colour is only an aspect of appearance. We are all made from flour and yeast. We all possess the same hope, the same life, and the same human greatness.
But what makes human value and humanity great is filling the shoes of others. To do unto others like we expect and appreciate - that’s the greatest law of humanity.
Difference or uniqueness aside, we all ought to live while upholding our greatest desires and fulfilling our maximal capabilities. Despite how our societies and our past defined us, and despite how our past might have crucially distorted a part of humanity.
We ought to appreciate the present, our differences, and our being. Our natures which we do not choose and our uniqueness which embraces our abilities, purposes, and capabilities. My uniqueness is what makes me different. We ought to recite this to younger generations of humanity. Humanity of one kind and flock.
That’s the spirit of humanity that we proudly dwell upon. Together, holding our hands, we give our differences a chance, our greatness bound. With common equality, value, respect, and love.
We are all equal. We are all human. We are all of one humanity.
by Meena rakasi
Bone is living tissue: think of calcium
phosphate as apartment for collagen and
osteocytes and whatever else needs a mother.
What supports me is alive, and so am I
because of it. Staticity was never meant for us:
picture chondroblasts in ceaseless migration,
decay, a constant nipping at their heels. It takes
both hands to count the number of houses I’ve
lived in, none to count those where I’ve felt at home.
Bone doesn’t ask for much: dictated by childhood:
milk and oranges, both easy to find, harder to
keep. Mine only peek, maroon crust and pale white,
from under flesh and skin when malnourished.
When the sunlight is nowhere to be found.
Displayed as a vestigial scar of humanity,
shouting what it means to be alive. Extracellular
as outside me, including you; including this
sweet-smelling grass and sun-scorched
sweat, and loam as darkly lavish as the skin
that walks upon it. To call it loving might be a
stretch, but sanctuary may just work.
By Magen Darling
We live in a world,
Filled with fear,
Filled with pain,
Filled with hurt,
Filled with hate.
We need to change the way we live,
The way we act,
The way we react.
Girls can play sports,
Girls can be in positions of power.
Boys can wear makeup,
Boys can cry.
Girls can love girls,
Boys can love boys.
They should no longer be taboo.
We shouldn’t be afraid to love,
We shouldn’t be afraid to be ourselves.
We shouldn’t be hiding in the dark.
We have fear in our eyes,
Pain in our brain,
Hurt in our heart,
And hate all around us.
This is our world.
love languages & other tongues
by Ana Chen
I. first kiss: badly-vented bathrooms
teeth – a sinner would do no better than you against
these nails & winter fangs, phlegm in your hands or
is that blood? thighs webbed with
shame & womanhood, map of a land
neither house nor home. silent shrieks –
II. wedding veils: dolled bedrooms/ripped jeans/bikinis/other blades
& so goes the silk: torn, slits
up each hip, erasure art
embroidery. you can’t even call it
a travesty of a tapestry –
& the curtain is up. mama used
to sew your qipaos. tears & breath
heavy in your hands.
III. honeymoon: some stage or another
low moans of cello on
tea sets, cheap paint over
dollar-store iron. & when
they purr at you perform girl you
do it slowly, let your pores loiter
in sweaty palms, pour hair through
salivating gazes. behind the gauze you
tremble. try to cleave the tongues
from your breasts, try
to count your dignity on fingers
IV. within: gardens/solitude
& heat suffocates you so you
find beauty in the cold: the
monochrome glitter of ice, the
sticky snare of electric music. you once
buried yourself in the snow. watched
your skin shimmer blue, baptized yourself,
licked &; serenaded your sins to sleep. &
when their skins slap yours, swell
your stomach putrid with fruit & fish,
you close your eyes, chant to remember
that in this world heat
is so small against
The Sound of War
by Ariana Arroyo
I wake up to
The sound of war
I awake to the sound of agony
And solid steel doors
I'm trapped inside
The narrow confines
Of this old town
Where nothing lives, but everything dies
I watch the bombs
Bursting in air
And hear the silence
As the world watches without a care
Everything crashes down
I see it with my eyes
I watch the world that is cursed
Where my fate lies