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Contents


Shai Ben-Shalom

Lindsay Foran

Jerry Golland

Seymour Mayne

Christal Steck

Doreen Taylor-Claxton

Nicola Vulpe

Betty Warrington-Kearsley

Erwin Wiens

Christal Steck

Christal Steck and her husband live in the far West of Ottawa with their four children and two very spoiled pups. Her chapbook Fluting Through Bamboo was published by Friday Circle in 1996.



Tap Root

“I shall fall like dew on Israel...”
                                  ~Hos. 14:6
 
The cedar seed falls hard on rock
where the early sapling withers,
its phloem parched and foraging
a dust of sun-hot sand.
 
What keeps its tap root
clinging to a callous face;
what sends it inching
into porous earth beyond;
what gathers its loose ends
in this depth of distant ground?
 
A waft of worm-wet soil in spring,
a flash of water slipping over ancient stone,
droplets dancing in crevices
and flickering from cracks of clay
                                  – faith enough.
 



Fault Line
“O felix culpa...”
                       ~St. Augustine, Enchiridion, iii.

In one slight seismic shift
we were heaved and flung.
 
Didn't even wonder when we fell, much later,
as though from the edges of nowhere,
and with full tectonic force;
nor when we landed as we did,
face-down in the debris.
 
Who will cross this stretch now,
arms spanning a circumference of stone;
whose hands once traced, clear to the footwall—
a fine line fracture, frail enough to draw us back?
 



The Rideau

Where
Rideau
falls
into
Outaouais,
its
front
curtain
pleats,
dramatic,
over
Ottawa’s
centre
stage.