Breasts and the Sensitive Guy:
             a meditation

   I. Discovery

   I don't really remember guys
         talking about it
         in the locker room or on
         the bus, but somehow I knew
         that if you were good
   you should be able to take a bra off
   one handed, while kissing, so smooth
         she wouldn't even feel it.
         But when we were 16
         in the backseat of
         her mom's station wagon,
         Gwendolyn Hillard took off her own bra.
         I should maybe have thanked her,
         or been relieved.
   But I just watched.

         The way I'd watched the

   II. Doubt

   I always feel like
   I should choose another
   part of the body
   to draw over
   and over
   in my mind...
         curves and curls,
         spirals and shadow...
   Shoulderblades, maybe.
   Or collarbones.
   The backs of knees.

         are so

   III. Defense

   But below an armpit,
   a breast will meet ribcage
   in the curve of
   a cursive C,
   nipples will spread
   in pale stains,
   or tighten to

         And every time,
   every rise and fall of
   breath, of
   is the first.

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© sarah kowalski
updated october 5, 1999