Welcome to September

A great many people think that to ache is something to be pitied at. It is something to be fixed, something to get over. But that comes from a misunderstanding that aching is painful. When truthfully, to ache is to be in-between. A dullness of pain that so often happens in life. 

Aching is the process of encasing your pain into amber. Having the sorrow and shock, yet a certain hope that things would be alright. Aching is remembering the struggle to wake up the first ten nights, and smiling for the last ten. Aching is rebuilding your life bit by bit, and falling in love with who you’ve become. 

In the end, dear starling, we should all be so lucky to be able to ache, rather than to be stuck in pain.  Because, ultimately, aching is proof that we survived.

With Warmth, 

The Editors


Waiting: Part Three
A Short Story by Rain Chudori

"Do you want to know why I was named Batas?" She asked him. She asked him as they lied in bed. Their hands were interlaced, like constellations, and she looked at him.

"He believed that everyone has a limit, and he wanted me to be someone's limit someday." She told him.


Happy Together: Andi Saskia x Harry Brown
Nadia Rompas & Emil Raji

They’ve been together for one year, and theirs is a relationship explicitly tied to the city of Melbourne, analogue photography and the cultural intricacies of falling for someone completely different to you without a damn.


A Red Rose Once
Firnita Taufick

as you turn grey / I will be naked / since my petals are already falling / to be closer to your roots

How We Built The House
Theodora S. Abigail

My life before consisted of a single answer for any request asked of me: yes. We are each of us born with a well of a heart and over the course of our lives this well perhaps goes dry, perhaps gushes more and more each year, perhaps lessens then steadies.


Abigail May Devhani

 so at seven years old / my mother told me the most beautiful thing / that roses are the best thing you can be



Politics, Etc.Who Are You To Bloom?
by Alia Marsha Kusumaningrat

 As I reflected on my own blooming this year, I knew it’s only right to talk about the very real experience of non-blooming. Have you been blooming, dear starlings? And if not, why? What are the kinds of conditions in which we wither?


From Our Breakfast Table: "How Does It Feel?"
by Anya Rompas

Arms long and slender with scrawny fingers begin crawling on the cold floor towards my feet. I am crying my heart out. One minute the room is bright but the next it became so black I think I am going to fall. I have trouble breathing. Tears and snot drips down into my mouth. I try to remind myself of my daughter and husband. 


Solipsism: solitary blossoming (Illustration)
by Lee Jia-An

Although lonely and uncertain, the self is surely still growing itself out from one form into another. The ever withering and blooming self is an uncanniness that I can still never seem to fully grasp.