Ottawa Poetry Magazine –

"Our Magnum Opus" by Shaima Kaka


Title image shows a woman sitting at a picnic bench reading while facing toward a scenic view of a river and government buildings.

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Published September 1, 2021

Our Magnum Opus

by Shaima Kaka
(Ottawa, Ontario, Canada)

Nine years ago I clutched a wooden spoon
And stirred intently some okra in a pan
In vain attempts to lose the unshakeable smile
That had taken root while on a bicycle that morning.
But come now, as the table has been set for us
(Early it seems and certainly not by me!)
To taste this decade's oeuvre, our magnum opus.
– Oh! I'm sorry, what a terrible shame, please,
You must forgive me, you see,
For my world has suddenly gone blurry,
And I believe I may have just now
In thinking of you
   Over salted the spread.

Shaima Kaka graduated with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Ottawa and is currently a medical student in Ottawa. Her poetry has been featured by the Canadian Medical Association and Canadian Federation of Medical Students. Twitter @skaka135 (

Previously published in Ottawa Poetry Magazine:
"A Bottle of Bleach" by Jeremy Raymond

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