Stacks: Episode 3

The Stanford Arts Review presents “Stacks”, a new miniseries where we follow fresh Stanford writers into the dusty stacks of Green Library. We sit down, crossing our legs and using a pile of books as a tripod, and listen to an intimate reading of one of their poems or short stories.  Listen with us.

first / last

A Poem by Greeshma

first game of four square,

first crush,

first trip to the appalachian trail,

first all gender party in jacob’s backyard in the fifth grade,

first dare to kiss a classmate in a closet,

first time I said “I’m not allowed to” in response,

first time scraping legs hairless,

first tampon pool party,

fourth tampon swim meet,

first medal in the 100 yard breaststroke,

first leak,

first locker room breakdown,

first time googling ‘signs that someone likes me’,

first time jealousy of conventionally pretty person,

first time watching a puberty video in health class next to floppy hair goofy grin soccer kid,

first footsie,

first time I avoided someone I had a crush on,

first pang of loneliness after they sat next to someone else in the cafeteria,

first realization that I was still loving and kind and worthy and loved,

first time running seven miles to dame’s chicken and waffles in the rain,

sweaty kiss,

first finger,

discovery of clitoris,

first time I was asked to prom,

third time I said “I’m not allowed to” in response,

first time attracted to someone who looked like me,

first fear of commitment,

first head massage – her head in my lap,

second time I didn’t tell my family,

second time someone said I should wax down there because I’m too hairy,

second time I avoided someone I had a crush on,

first time I didn’t wince when someone called me good looking,

first time I found out that you can delete your browser history,

seventh time I felt self conscious about my body hair,

first time I said “I want you” without feeling obligated to,

first time I felt comfortable asking to slow down,

first time I got wet from just being around someone,

first time I told them how much they turn me on,

third time I didn’t tell my family,

first time I actually went to SHPRC instead of just advising other people to,

first nap without bra,

first time on random sidewalk at 3am bare feet,

first nap naked,

first nap interrupted,

first time two fingers,

first time: “you still haven’t had your first time?”

first time it is supposed to hurt this bad,

first across the lecture hall look that gave me butterflies,

first shared playlist,

first shared first,

last bike race through duke gardens,

last time in the same time zone,

last time someone called me a coward,

last time belting our anthem in the car,

 and I’ve been yearning for a quiet place / and I’ve been yearning for you

last time needing all kisses minty fresh,

last embarrassment about bodily fluids,

last inch of the tape measure around her waist,

last minute before climax,

last time feeling shame about my desire

last time feeling shame about my lack of desire

last time I resisted feeling good about myself,

last night,

last time writing a letter and tearing it up,

last time writing something for someone and never showing them,

last time guilt,

last time shame,

last time playing games,

last time feeling inadequate, not really,

last year,

last chance,

but first,

when was the last time you said

I’m sorry or
I care for you or
I want to know you better or
I need space or
I want to love me for me

when was the first time you truly meant it

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