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Quetzal 2020 | University of Waterloo’s Online Arts Magazine2021-03-06T22:59:37-05:00

Photography

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Poetry & Prose

“Prelude” by Emma McLaughlin

Prelude Emma McLaughlin Published Winter 2021 To reap the unsown, lifeless and vacant – The death before you’re grown.   Savour of Spring air, both fresh and ancient – The breath that blows my hair.   I can be patient, There are sunnier days ahead. [...]

” Vaut-il mieux parler ou mourir?” by Emma McLaughlin

Vaut-il mieux parler ou mourir? Emma McLaughlin Published Winter 2021 Vaut-il mieux parler ou mourir?  Words so often catch on the verge of my lips, and slip On the same efflux of breath that bids you goodnight. In the dead air, you would find the [...]

“Swing Set” by Sharanya Karkera

Swing Set Sharanya Karkera Published Winter 2021 I had a whole future planed out for us, How our backyard would look, What we’d keep in the storeroom, How we’d cook together in the kitchen, Even which songs would be playing on the stereo But the [...]

“De-light” by Ketyusha Das

De-light Ketyusha Das Published Winter 2021 I sat in the sun On a rainy day I had no home But found a place to stay Tended to the fire It'll keep me warm But I kept my distance For things could go wrong Picked up a [...]

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Visual Arts

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Short Stories

“Stepping Stones” by Harry Cheung

Stepping Stones Harry Cheung Published Winter 2021 Silence falls over the auditorium as a lone boy steps in front of the microphone. Stared down by the audience like a pack of hungry wolves, he nervously grips his only ally, a set of hastily made cue cards. It is orientation day, and I am about to deliver a speech to become a future student council representative. Hundreds of students stand before me, as eager as I was to leave behind their past and start anew in their first year of high school. I wanted nothing more than to believe that everything was going to be alright. Yet even amidst cheers and applause from the audience, it was clear to me that something was very wrong. That day, those doubts would begin a slow but methodical assault that would permanently seal my fate. High school is a crucial rite of passage for any teenager to traverse, not just for necessity, but to determine your future in life. It is a place of trials, learning, and growth, but also the revelation of a cruel society that only values what you can offer to the status quo. Before Waterloo, I [...]

“Persecution, Immigration, Discrimination and Hope” by Ghazala Saeed

Persecution, Immigration, Discrimination and Hope Ghazala Saeed Published Fall 2020 When I was about 8 years old, I saw my father taking out some handmade catapults and marble balls while cleaning an old closet. I was very excited to see these interesting objects. I asked my dad, “Why do you have these? Do you know how to aim? Who taught you?” He said, “Dada Abu (grandfather) brought these home... to train us!" I was curious, “Train you for what?” He replied, “When they announced that they will attack our house, your Dada Abu brought a few things home for self-defense. He taught us how to use them if anything happens.” I was fascinated, “Wow! Can I play with these, will you teach me?” Dad smiled and said, “Yes, we’ll play upstairs.”  Many years ago, my grandfather moved to a new house in Punjab, Pakistan. The new neighbors were very nice to each other. But not to him. One day, a lady in that neighborhood threw a heavy brick at my grandmother’s back; my grandmother got injured but she didn’t utter a word. Who was going to listen anyway? A few days later, the neighbors announced on [...]

“The Time Twister” by Suhana Kumar

The Time Twister Suhana Kumar Published Spring 2020 ` Sarajevo, 1914 The air was smokey, clusters of particles floating through as if time had stopped. Maybe, in a way, time did stop, and it was as if the streets of Sarajevo knew something was going to happen. Or, as they say, the calm before the storm. He woke up at precisely 6:30, and dragged himself out of bed to dress. He had to look his best, today was the big day. He grabbed the letters that piled on the broken side-table and shoved them into his coat pocket, and finally, retrieved a gun from his closet and putting it in his inside coat pocket. The boy looked into the dirty mirror at his shorn hair as he covered his demons with a cap. What did I get myself into? But you promised me. So why does it feel wrong? His long, unkempt bangs fluttered in his face as he tugged on his cap, stepping out into the streets. He doesn’t know why he was feeling so self-conscious, living in Sarajevo meant that you were a nobody. A nobody… It took him 15 minutes to reach [...]

“The Lupercal Lake” by Justin Wayne Blake

The Lupercal Lake Justin Wayne Blake Published Spring 2020 ` A sour, irritating stench had wafted through the air and troubled the boy's nose. He reached an arm up to scratch it, just as the beast leaped towards him. 1 "My father told me never to go into the forest," said Olivia as she let herself be dragged along. “He says that it's dangerous.” “Well, your father ain't here," said Elias, keeping a firm grasp on her wrist. "And there's nothing in those woods that I can't handle." As they hurried along, they crunched dry leaves underfoot and wiped the sweat from their brows. A slight breeze was blowing, which was cool enough for Elias, but not for Olivia, who found her patience waning. “Elias...Elias, stop!" she said, as she wrenched her arm from his grasp. “I can't walk anymore. I'm tired and my feet hurt. Let me rest for a while." Almost breathless, Elias turned and gesticulated towards the rough path they were following. "Resting is what I'm trying to do. The lake I was telling you about is just over yonder. We can rest there." Olivia smiled as she remembered when Elias first told [...]

“Plucked” by Aniqah Beharry

Plucked by Aniqah Beharry “Is it really that bad?” Is it? Media doesn’t hesitate to portray the violent plucking of petals from flowers,  The poor unsuspecting flowers, no matter their brightness or scents, Any species can be picked from the stems from which they were so once comfortably, naïvely swinging in the breeze. Everyone loves flowers, different kinds for different reasons,  Some feel entitled to flowers but don’t understand that these flowers grew on their own and aren’t theirs to take.  From a little girl to years later, when I’m now a university student, they all still argue.  I’ve grown up in a society that blames flowers for being picked because they’re too pretty, because they were in a place they shouldn’t have been, because they were too bright, because they did this and that and this and that and this and that.  A lot of people ridicule and hold the flower culpable for what happens to them.  But I’d never heard this one before, “Is it really that bad?” Is it really that bad?  Is it really that bad? Is it really that bad? Is it? Is it bad? Is it fair? Is it unfair? When [...]

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