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fiction issue cover
The cover of the fiction issue. Image: Hailey Otten/Fulcrum
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Here’s a look at their work

For the past few weeks, the Fulcrum has called on University of Ottawa students to submit literary pieces of fiction for our annual fiction issue. Here are the best poems we received.

Otonanza by Curzio 

I undress in summer all over your autumn,

on your weathered branches,

on your ochre light,

on your lambent trunks,

on your vibrant leaf litter.

Evergreen climbing is your body, perched on my walls:

invasive,

obscene,

tremulous… and vagrant.

Your hands, your fingers, your mouth…

are wet fern pieces

on a gloomy forest, burning down against my skin.

Cups of fire and brimstone be to us

beneath the putrefaction of September.

Let my ten thousand leaves scatter over your pores

as the complex of my daring desire.

A cloak covers our nakedness,

garlanded,

cerulean,

mallow flowers.

And your groaned quince,

resin and incandescent amber,

is distilled between my lips…

like a lustful whisper.

A flicker of fall by Victoria Feng

A contagious

forest fire

flares

into flames of their kind.

It bites on branches.

Converting the colours

of leaves 

from emerald to amber,

emerald to ruby,

and to another until the

crystals

lose their glimmer.

Still,

I ran still.

Uncannily similar to the bright sky

embracing

the motions in it.

Intentionally,

as if

a metal spring is made

to push back,

waiting for a cue,

for Mother Nature

to bloom again.

Mesmerizing echoes

from preys

rang my ears,

each layer

challenging my patience.

I watch

as animals rummage through soil,

hiding secrets

beneath the burning trees.

Little do they know,

the wind whispers to

the birds, taking

some away.

Yet these animals

pay no mind,

till what is left

is empty.

It is not until

when the fire halts,

when the forest has fallen,

that all start

appreciating the flicker of fall.

I see poets by Curzio 

I see poets turning into lakefront willows

as they wave and lengthen

when the autumn residues arrive.

I see poets baring their branches

with the leaves kissing the putrid waters

in the search towards an oncoming storm

Other leaves nervously crawl,

rustling like the teeth

inside their bitter mouths

Other leaves flow away,

to coat the sadness cracking

of their corrosive verses

And time is running out,

in their naked eyes

the rain breaks through

and their traces are lost

among the leaf litter, among the disconsolation…

…and their sky is broken from within

Now I see ordinary men feeling lighter,

unburned by it all, sitting on the lakefront

Undisturbed by aught,

nothing to shelter them:

not even their leaves, not even oblivion,

not even autumn,

not even the shoots of their bare branches

Thus, it is

I can no longer see poets…

And I’ll Kiss You Again by Curzio

I have written so many love letters that even if this one tiptoes over

the threshold of the autumns, writing you love letters is like kissing

you again…

You march in my veins, for October to transits us together like recent harvests, even so, close, and yet so far away. I am crowded with kisses, whispers, clumsy words, and the sparks of the great defoliation strategy to which I will never take you.

But do you know what else?

That even if my fingers falter, even if the trunk of memory closes

for me with the inexorable key of dementia, even if my love letters

no longer reach you, not even from the threshold of autumns, I will

continue to see you precious!

Forgive me for the disorder of my paragraphs I loved you and I want to tell you, that to put the order in this accumulation of feelings coated with senescence, would be like trying to catch in the citrine wind, or simply the essence of a tree, to which to date, I only call by your name.

Tomorrow maybe, again with the excuse of autumn, to write you a love letter, will be like kissing you again…