Poetry by Geraldynn Lubrido

Back to school this week means we’ve got a first time submitter Geraldynn Lubrido, a 2nd year English student from Ryerson. This piece has a nice focus on orality, with its rhyming and alliteration (and slow disappearance of it), and use of  parentheses and word choice. The word choice also meshes action and description initially, and eventually tearing these two types of diction into two stanzas of indecision before the last stanza. The title harks back on this indecision as well. As the heart sinks and the upbeat rhythms become scattered, so does the character’s will to action.

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To Breathe or Not to Breathe

Jingle jangle
Jewels in a tangle
Catching on the buttons of her white cardigan
Dirty white
Fabric fights
Stretching ‘round her cellulite
Could’ve been hidden under tummy-sucking jeans
But it’s summer and there’s a breeze for once and she wanted to wear her favourite crop top—
Breathe

Insecurity made her close her buttons
Showing her top but hiding her midriff
Making an effort to not breathe too much
Lest her baby bump will show
(It’s not a freaking baby bump dammit)
Screw societal expectations
Screw the judging stares
All she has to do is
Pop those buttons and breathe
And she’ll be comfortable in her own skin
For once

Jingle jangle
This necklace is tangled again
Rip it off
Pop those buttons
Just do it girl

Laughter floats around the street corner and
Her friends come into view
Flat bellies
Bright smiles
Open cardigans

Her heart sinks.

She smiles and waves and breathes a bit more shallowly
Maybe she’ll be brave one day
But not today.
_

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