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Mary Akers


You’re doing too much, she said.

Fine, I thought. But really look at my life for a change. Then tell me how to do less.

You just need to relax, she said. You get all discombobulated.

I told her I knew that. That even my breasts were tired. She said she preferred the word bosoms. I said they were just pillows and mine were so small they were moot anyway.

You always were a child of whimsy, she said.

I’ve got your whimsy, I thought. Right here.

All my life, I'd wanted a motherly mother, the kind who’d nestle me into a pair of soothing motherly pillows. Instead I got the kind that says, “You’re working your twat off, you know,” seated around a full Thanksgiving table.

Mary Akers’ work has appeared in Bellevue Literary Review, The Fiddlehead, Brevity, and other journals. Her short story collection Women Up On Blocks was published earlier this year, and she has a co-authored non-fiction book due out in January. She has an MFA from Queens University of Charlotte and has been a Bread Loaf waiter and returning work-study scholar.

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