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Breathe, Scream, Ice Cream: Navigating Stress During Finals

Let’s be honest—your midterms have overstayed their welcome, your fuse is running short, and no matter how much food you ate over Thanksgiving, you still can’t help but think about your schedule, your homework, and most of all, your finals. My first word of advice, however, is not to stress. (I know, it’s much easier said than done.) But hopefully these tips will help you realize that know that it’s not only okay to be stressed, but also to let yourself mitigate that stress every once in a while.  

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Porch Moment

By Jessica Gregory

This poem was written in my sophomore year, and while I would love to do more work on it, I actually really love it as is! Hope you enjoy!

 

If there’s one moment

I’d like to go back to, back to

The feeling of

It would be my fourth

First kiss.

We were standing on

My front porch

Bathed in

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Image courtesy of keithdotson

An uneven spotlight

From two bulbs on either

Side of the door.

One was fluorescent yellow

one was golden,

So half of you looked a

Tad pasty while

The other half looked

like summer,

and that warmed me

Just enough so

That I could

Drape my arms over

Your shoulders.

You reached up and

Slowly, finger by finger, then

Palm, rested your hand

You kept looking

Up, then down

Then back up

At my face as I looked

Forward, then right,

Then forward.

If I could visibly blush

I promise you my entire

Face would have been

A tomato,

Because then you took a

Half-step

Closer

And those white

puffs of air coming out of

Your mouth

Intermingled with mine.

You were

That close

Your eyes

Were right there

Your lips were

Right there.

Your other hand slid onto

My hip, and I wasn’t

Sure which of us was

Shivering

Or what we were

Shivering for.

It wasn’t cold like this,

Like this while my

Eyes quit trying to feign

Distraction and locked

Onto your pinkish

Lips

Then my eyes closed

And my let my head

Tilt sideways, moving

Forward slow so I

Wouldn’t crash.

But I moved so slow

I almost missed your

Lips slowly pressing

Against me

They were so soft

You were so soft,

Careful as if you

Were handling

Something precious

And breakable.

But

We pulled back

So fast I wasn’t sure it

Actually happened.

So I had to do it again,

Placing my palm on

Your cheek and

Letting my closing

Lids

Pull you toward me again.

This, this was my first kiss.

The others no

longer counted.

 

Jessica Gregory is a senior at Barnard and Editor in Chief of Barnard Bite