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Thursday, May 21, 2020


by Kate Bradley-Ferrall

My cottony bra arrived yesterday, flattened
in a limp, black bag an essential worker delivered.
I chose the sporty one because it had the most positive reviews
about relaxing and staying-at-home.
Five stars for comfort.
Light. Soft.
Minimal support is fine right now.
Hardly anyone sees me below the neck these days.
This Zoom-worthy bra barely cradles my weighty breasts,
which I refuse to call “the girls.”
Why do people call them that? Mine have been
squashed, tugged, suckled, bitten, stroked, and adored,
the work of many years of strength and wisdom,
not of flippant schoolgirls giggling in sunlight,
their own breasts small puffs beneath fresh, white blouses.
Today my hardened bust heaves
at the thought of you dying alone.
And I feel guilt for lounging
in an optional heather-blue bra,
while a stiff mask cups your nose and mouth,
and an invisible weight crushes your chest
in a stagnant darkness that binds
you to an unfamiliar bed.

Kate Bradley-Ferrall is staying inside with her wife, two daughters, and her quarantining mother. A former award-winning television producer and scriptwriter, her creative work has been published in The Colorado Review, Sick Lit and children's magazines. She currently walks her dogs. A lot.