Category: Hart House Review

The Itch, by Faith Arkorful


I wasn’t born in this country, but my mother had brought me back to the island when I was young. Here, it got dark at six, every evening, every day. I had gotten used to darkness easily, but I never got used to living without my father.

It was during a dark night, without a semblance…

in the woods, in the dark we saw a light, Joseph Ianni

neithertheforestorthetreesthespacebetweenthatlightshinesthrough forustoseeaflashlightinthenightcomingtowardsuseyesstrainedand waterycryingoutstretchedarmstoblackthewhitewithraysstillslipping pastpalmsfingersdisolvinginthebrightnesswecannothidehereany longernolongerarewehiddenintheribcagesofbranchesintertwinedus preciousoffaltobeharvestedthereisabulletinhisgutcometakeitoutquick orpushbackmyforeskinentermyheadhopeIforgetourtimeinthewoods wherethelightcametoshineonourpleasantmomentsinthedarkwedid notneedlighttomoveaboutweheardeachothersheartsbeatfollowed blindlybybrancheswhenwewalkedintoeachotherwewalkedinsideeach othernoticedourrootsintersectingabovebelowanestofstrangertwigsfall entogetherthreeeggsinsideonlytwointactonecrackedbrokenorbirthed inthewoodsinthedarktheflashlightbatteriesdiewithscreamsscreeches squealsandsqawksechoingbacktowherethelightfirstcame


Joseph Ianni is the third place winner in the 2015 running of the HHLLC poetry contest.

Fair Ground, by Kirsten Peterson

There is a little iron in the stripes
of a Dretske’s zebra
cribbing on white fenceposts.

Ever the absentminded catalyst,
it blows crocodile kisses
past the impartial observer
killing horseflies
beside the Tilt-A-Whirl.

Grandfather constructs out of sugar cubes
and a peppercorn
a function of W.’s truth-concept.
Fly-spotted, he admits –
this is a Muskoka summer

Workplace, by Ben Caughran

having been given my
choice of projects after recent successes
I elected to
take over for the office bulletin board
until the replacement arrives

I stand motionless, facing the wall of the
lunch room sucking in the
scent of nuked tomato as
Cathy microwaves her leftover penne

Tom asks me
how things are going;
I say not…

The Insects That Bite You In Summer, by Jen Batler


a boy, an early hint of the many gin-soaked years

that will hound you and paint you

an asphalt grey with burgundy strokes around the eyes,

a taste for barbecue and cancer and marshmallows,

but mostly, the memory

of a large granite rock worn smooth,

sat firmly in the sand in a shallow portion

of lake lipped with water cool, and slick,


Dreams From Naps, by Rachel Schloss

Pitch black.
Light feigned from the device
like a smile,
and with the closet door ajar,
the email on the screen
flicks back and forth infinitely.


A mattress in…

two poems by Laura Ritland


I can rage like the best of my species.
Make my howls as do the mandrill, bonobo
or siamang. A natural, upright grief, driving
parrots away in fear of the biped. A night of eight
million years gnawing on the same speech––still,

Hart House Review 2016 Launch

Our 25th anniversary is due to be celebrated. The launch of the 25th issue of the Review will take place this Friday, April 15th in the debates room on the second floor of Hart House at the University of Toronto.

The celebrations start at 8pm and carry on until we are through (but we hope you…

a talk with Jess Taylor

jess2resizeA talk with Jess Taylor about Pauls, her forthcoming first collection of short fiction; about working with BookThug on putting it together; and about laying the foundation for her first novel.

Jess Taylor

infinite beauty will kemp

there is infinite beauty, by William Kemp


William Kemp is a co-founder of words(on)pages, a Toronto micropress that also runs a reading series, words(on)stages, and publishes a literary journal, (parenthetical).  He has published a chapbook, but you are poetryer than me, which is available for purchase here.