Reviewing Crushbridge Poems
And how to write a good one
We all know that flush of joy – or sometimes dread – associated with getting tagged in a Crushbridge. It seems that hours upon hours of life at Cambridge are spent reading, discussing the minutiae of, and writing posts for this Facebook page which has amassed approximately 10,000 followers. It's about time that this literature of love, written by Cantabs in moments of desperation, elation, and everything in between, is properly reviewed.
The use of the colloquial term ‘Boi’ rather than ‘boy’ establishes an amusing and comfortable tone – what better way to win over a love interest than pure, unadulterated wit? Despite an implied masculinity, this term is gender-less which opens up the address to any female Cantabs who identify as ‘Bois’ (don't we all?). The capitalisation emphasises its importance – perhaps an inside joke (always a pro in Crushbridges as it makes it more easily recognisable for the addressee).
This post 'subtly' indicates that the love interest is a NatSci through the medium of a chemistry pun: 'ion'. Readers of all subjects are entertained by the witty and mirthful way that the writer adroitly points out the identity of the Crushbridgee. Perhaps the best aspect is the final line. According to the wisdom of Wikipedia, '(Mg, Fe) 7 Si 8 O 22 (OH) 2' is a metamorphic amphibole with the title ‘cummingtonite’ – establishing an innuendo within the chemistry conceit of the main text, whilst maintaining the casual tone of the poem. 10/10.
On reading this unusually phrased profession of attraction, I was struck by parallels with Shakespeare's Sonnet 130. The almost Metaphysical simile 'you resemble an under-developed meerkat with an inability to grow a beard' is a modern-day echo of Shakespeare's classic negative imagery: 'My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun'. Like Shakespeare, the wordsmith of this literary gem portrays an honest and realistic love which is endearing for both the love interest and the distant onlookers on Facebook.
In this frankly beautiful sonnet, the writer manipulates the Romantic trope of natural and bucolic imagery to present an idyllic scene: the Crushbridgee at one with their surroundings, so beautiful that 'Nature' personified is calm in their presence. This is emphasised by the gentle dental alliteration of 'dusk-dappled' and 'willow-wood'. AP is endowed with divine qualities, compared to 'marbled deities' and perhaps even the classical figure of Dawn, 'the harbinger of day'. Like Byron in 'She Walks in Beauty', the author of this sonnet uses sensory imagery to idealise and glorify their love interest. What makes this poem so poignant is its bittersweet ending – 'pained sanguinity', 'lonely trills', 'whispered sighs'. The pain of unrequited love heightens the romance, a typical motif of love poetry (and a definite sign of a stalker).
This Crushbridge manipulates a universally recognisable and stereotypically romantic format to make a political and social statement, subverting the tradition in a humorous but pithy fashion. In the space of four short lines, it comments on gender, capitalism, and LGBT+ issues. If you're going to use the medium of Crushbridge to make a political point, this is the way to do it.
Now we've seen the créme de la créme of Crushbridges, here are the Tab's top tips on how to write your own:
1. Either construct a rhyme scheme, make a pun, or write some form of simile or metaphor – this makes your Crushbridge at least mildly poetic which is entertaining to read (and romantic af).
2. A Crushbridge should contain 2 initials. This could be the 2 initials of the love interest, the writer, or one initial for each. Through this method, you reach a happy medium between ambiguity and specificity.
3. Try to write with a particular angle or theme – political, romantic, sarcastic or subject-specific.
4. DO NOT simply shout-out to someone you saw in the library or street that you thought was sexy, identifying them by their hair colour or a distinctive garment. Originality is key.
5. Alcohol is a verbal lubricant and is strongly recommended.