For all the Sylvias by Alison Lubar

Sink into your parents’ plastic pool, 

painted mosaics on polypropylene liner, 

PVC flamingo floats, neon orange rafts 

turn your skin whiter (exsanguinate eyelids, 

cheekbones keen), cherry stone freckles sit–

mistaken unsinkable seeds.


For all of the Sylvias shivering away 

ventricle remnants of nostrum– (remember 

when you went around the world?) please 

don’t end here. Come out from under–

water, wherever–


transmute mystical to untroubled

duck– firm every hollow bone 

from wonder bread, quaggy reeds, 

iridescent fishes– I write you back to life, 

wish you wings– take to the unchlorinated air,

resist gravity, rise downside-up, and sprout 

to sky– begin again.

Alison Lubar teaches high school English by day and yoga by night. They are a queer, nonbinary, mixed-race femme whose life work (aside from wordsmithing) has evolved into bringing mindfulness practices, and sometimes even poetry, to young people.  Their work has been nominated for both the Pushcart & Best of the Net, and they’re the author of four chapbooks: Philosophers Know Nothing About Love (Thirty West Publishing House, 2022), queer feast (Bottlecap Press, 2022), sweet euphemism (CLASH!, 2023), and It Skips a Generation (Stanchion, 2023). You can find out more at or on Twitter @theoriginalison.