Breaststrokes. ~ Barbara Anne Maloney

Via elephant journal
on Jun 26, 2013
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Every woman has them, touches them, hides them, shows them off or ignores them.

We have a fixation with breasts regardless of our sexual orientation.

Show a little nipple while singing the national anthem on TV and the world stops to ponder. Somehow, collectively, we agree to give that which we hide tremendous power. Imagine a world where breasts are free to be!


Micro swirls of tinted flesh

Brushed upon an infant’s chest.

Two tiny promises of dimpled pleasure

Laying dormant on sun kissed canvas.


Childhood’s nipples are shy.

They shed no light

On the battle of the sexes

Boy . . . Girl, Girl . . . Boy,

We’re all the same,

These almost invisible coins

Of small change proclaim.


Until a pressure . . .

A hot,





Begins shaping

A filling,




And nipples become the mastheads

Of bold sailing ships,

Capable of kidnapping the stares

Of grown men,

While splashing blush stain

On the newly stubbled cheeks

Of young boys,

And tightening the frown lines

Of older, drier women.


Pretty bobbing apples

Of both question and desire,

Filling the triangles of bikinis

And the lace edged cups of bras

With aggressive hope.



Alone at night we curiously fingered

These charms to a thrusting burst of joy.

Van Gogh’s Sunflowers splashed

On the teen fevered canvas of our flesh.


Oh God!

A lover strokes

A lightening bolt ripple

Across our skin,

Flaming a spiraling path

From tugged upon nipples

To our inner core…


And there—


Landing within the pulsing wet swell

Of our hidden third nipple,

Entwined in hair feathered folds.

These three lost goddess’s

Of fleshly pleasures

Reunite in the velvet void,

Hold hands and dance

Under a Goddess Moon,

To the silent roar of orgasmic music…

And come,

And come,

And come!


Greedy babies suckle;

Pulling so hard, we feel our soul

Leaking into their waiting, hungry mouths.

And thus are we forever tethered

Within the hearts of our children,

For they have swallowed microchips

Of our soul food,

And we will find them again and again.

Mother radar that tracks

Through all the mists and confusions

That time, circumstance, and separation

Will pour as an ocean

Between mother and child.


The pull is downwards, ever downwards,

Earth bound and underbelly heavy,

Panty elastic and political promises

And pretty breasts,

All too soon lose their elastic rebound

And melt into softer shapes.

Blurry edges.

Quieter story.




Sister, sister,

Oh, sister mine.


Something has been hunting

Along the cellular corridors

Of your form and function.

It stalks your essence

With hungry intent.


The mind fractures into shards

Of chaotic flurry.

A hard lump of . . .


. . . . . . what? . . .


. . . .

. . . please


It’s nothing.


Shoo fly, don’t bother me.

Shoo . . . . shoo . . .

. . . lady bug, lady bug,

Fly away home.

Your house is on fire

And your children will roam.





A stranger’s hand palpates,

Instruments penetrate,

A knife cuts,






In fear painted limbo.


Leaving behind a curved seam

That decorates yet another door to your heart.


Your hand presses emptiness

Where once you cradled teddy bears,

And your lover tattoos

Passion bites and kisses

Along the wildflower roadmap

That’s stitched across your chest,

Learning new ways to old stories.


So sing a siren song of laughter,

Sister, sister,

Dancing in the rain.

You now have both woman’s pulsing breast,

And her battle scarred warrior’s chest.

Sentinels to the heart and soul of you,


Dearest you,

Sister you.



barbara maloneyBarbara Anne Maloney is always ready to reinvent herself. She met her husband 39 years ago while hitchhiking down from Alaska. She raised and home schooled their children on a fish boat. She’s a natural caretaker and an empath who has done psychic readings, energy mapping, astrology columns and sold fries on Vancouver’s nude Wreck Beach. Now, in her 60’s, and living in Vancouver, British Columbia, Barbara is turning to writing for the sweet pleasure of storytelling. You can read more of her work on her website. Barbara is an organic vegetarian who hates to house clean. Books win over dishes in most arm wrestling events. Her spiritual path is one of inner exploration and outer appreciation.



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4 Responses to “Breaststrokes. ~ Barbara Anne Maloney”

  1. daisy says:

    What a lovely, breathtaking piece of poetry.
    What a beautiful tribute to all women, especially, (tears fill my eyes as I write) those with the battle scarred warrior’s chest.
    Thank you.
    Even those housewives … let's not forget we're all sisters.
    You strange, beautiful poet possessed of a beautiful heart.

  2. Barbara says:

    Thank you Daisy. Yes, I think of this as a song for all women. I have 4 blood sisters and many sisters of the heart. My youngest sister Maureen had her left breast removed. She is well loved, and she is a survivor. I wrote most of this poem the day of her surgery. It was my way of making peace with her path.

  3. Marcy says:

    I love this! As a lactation consultant, I go on calls and sometimes find women that don’t want to expose their breasts to me. Our culture is definitely obsessed with women’s breasts! Thank you for sharing this beautiful poetry…

  4. Barbara says:

    Thank you Marcy for your comments. I think one of the jobs of an artist is to use our talents to cross lines into unfamiliar or uncomfortable territory. I see more and more women claiming back their bodies as time goes by. so speaks a 65 year old 🙂