A serene and bright swathe of red and yellow sunset greets you before you even read a word of Blue Print Review, a journal that incorporates an image, be it a painting, photograph or sketch, with something like a poem, short story or prose piece – although it never explicitly labels any of them as anything but “words.” Even the all-encompassing theme of being “Lost, Found and Stolen” is open to interpretation, much like a painting or photograph.
In J.M. Patrick’s “Learning to Swim in an Estuary,” appropriately paired with Steve Wings's photo, one lover tries to convince the other who is afraid to get in the water:
Come on, he tells you, just one step. He takes your hand. There are two fishermen perched on beach chairs. You can't see their lines in the dark. Thirty yards down there is a seagull screaming. You are sure she is trying to warn you of something. You tell him this and he opens his mouth to laugh. You picture the ocean filling him like a wine glass. This is what you're afraid of. Being swallowed. Like his footprints. Like Jonah.
The ocean and the wine glass reel you into the core of this poetic work, and leave their footprints everywhere.
In “The Capital of Garbo,” a grandson goes to live with his hated grandmother, to take care of her. In the process, developing a bit of sympathy for her plight during one of her rare human moments (centered on the death of her husband): “‘God damn them,' she said, 'I told them Burt Janikowski doesn't live here anymore. I called them up. I told them to cancel these subscriptions.' She looked to me. 'You want some magazines? You want to read? Here.’”
This work asks the reader what has been lost, what has been stolen from us – whether it is what we can see or what we can read.
These two profoundly different pieces only scratch the surface of what Blue Print Review has to offer. This is an online journal constructed to ease the complex and beautiful convergence of language and art and all the possibilities this entails as readers explore its words and images.