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‘Every Day Was Ordinary’ by Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

— Joyce Chong

A line of people
swaying in place like grass.
One is always emerging
into something.
Out of something else.

There’s a particular language in ‘Every Day Was Ordinary’ by Joshua Jennifer Espinoza, that is both dreamily poetic and yet as direct and simplistic as prose. There is lyricality in the arrangement of images, the contrast of a self-assured tone against the recollection of internal and external discord. The blurry line between clarity and dissociation, strife and understatement, wrapped in its own certainty. Writing of the past, of a distance traveled, while planted firmly in the present. Becoming, not as a singular transitive period, but an entire life in motion.

Every day was ordinary.
I’d wake up and pretend
to be a boy.
I’d go to sleep and dream
of being a woman.
Eventually I never
regained consciousness.


Granta