Get Your Tits Out by Johanna Boal

I am not a silent poet

It is that expression

which I have never liked –

Get Your Tits Out!

They are breasts, belonging to me.

My body with its hang-ups

exposed to a louder, penetrating tone,

to show them on a wolf whistle

feels more battered and bruised.

This morning I received a letter

to have my tits out/checked.

A mammogram, a massive steel machine

with lights and buttons,

the fun my husband has,

and the milk that was supplied.

Plates came crashing on my tits

flattened, spreading like pancake batter.

I gritted my teeth to manage the pain

sweat poured from forehead,

my arms went numb,

I must have been white as the gown I wore.

The nurse was very reassuring and I noticed

her hands were not treating my tits like objects.

Johanna Boal 2016

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