August 11, 2018 my breasts are African breasts. they are not my mom's breasts. they are not my friends breasts. they are not models breasts. they are not white breasts or mixed breasts. they are African. National Geographic. something surreally 'otherly' about saying that. I always watched those shows-- about the tribe people, grassland people, people who live in straw huts-- with a sort of irreverent awe; not spoken, but definitely shared by whatever other first world country-ers watch it. they are foreign. I watched them. strong women. black women. women with breasts like fruit-- low hanging and large like gourds. the nipples pointed earthward, towards the providing and exacting land, either reaching towards it or taunting it in their free swinging bravery. so foreign to me yet somehow mystical in their simplistic life, mystical in its realness; uncluttered by just ~everything~going on here. I do not see my breasts around me. they are not my mothers; stretched by suckling children, grasps and pulls visible, low hanging, nipples turned upward at the end like a question, like a temptation. they are not my friend's; ever-cradled in waking and in sleep by cushions and wires, nipples straight ahead and colored like a whisper. they are not the models; large and unbelievable in roundness, or small and unnoticeable behind thin cotton. my breasts are loud. they are not overly large or overly small but they are loud. they are low hanging fruit, late to bud and late to flower but ripe once they arrived. my breasts are warm jello, sliding away when I lay on my back to reveal a flat chest bone. my breasts point low and graze my fat when I bend over, light kisses fleetingly bespeckling my stomach. my nipples are like me. they change with the mood, with the temperature, with the weather, with the small influence and the hidden innuendo. they change shape, color, size. my nipples are medium-brown in the day. the color of a translucent coffee candy. the nipple knows its shape; yet only vaguely so- the pretense of a nipple. you know where it should and could go, you can guess how you expect it to harden. they are never too hard or too soft or too large or small in the day, they are medium brown in complexion and tone. they don't, though, go as they seem they may when circumstances change. my nipples are light-brown in the tub. a sort of auburn, glowing orangey color muted by the natural browns and purples that compliment it. they are lighter. easier to see through. easier to spot blemishes on. they grow fat and large and haughtily satisfied in the tub. large pancakes spread across the bottom of the breast, expanding in the knowledge of a safe space to be alone. my nipples are dark brown in the bedroom. they are the color of mud- the rich smelling kind you make with intent, the kind where your hands are thick with it and you grasp deeper in search of the innermost earth, the smooth kind that makes no noise as you press it, only the soft thump thumpof the stirring process. skin folded tightly at the base, the protruding nipple is stiff and cylindrical, the breast perfectly round. they are small, tight, neat, compact. serene and unknowing in their beauty. they do not attract attention though they may draw it. my breasts are imperfect. they have light spots that look as though the baker did not mix well. they are light and the skin is thin, revealing green wires in places. they bear the scars of their rapid growth. my breasts like to be free. to melt. to swing. to shift and show. they are fruits of a long ancestry; and though I may not see them around me they are my own in all of their oddities. my breasts are African breasts. low hanging and free and brave.