Globular Measurements and Movements

In poor agricultural societies, from Asia through Africa to the Americas, while the men go off to tend the animals, be they goats, sheep, long-horned cattle, or a long day’s trudge behind an ox, the women labour on the land closest to home, their fingers in earth, bending to sow and to reap even while round-belly pregnant. And this despite their overall increase in body weight throughout gestation, layers of metabolic fat thickening arms and legs, movement no longer light and lithe.

Even in this comfortable fourth floor flat, taking the bulk of herself awkwardly from sofa to table, her every move has her stomach gurgle like that of a shiftworker, while gravity seeks to drag her four floors down.

In the orbit of this overweight matron are two ungracious and overfed offspring from previous pairings and a man barely there. This man, a now distanced onlooker, recalls the ‘bloom’, the skin-tight perfection of her young sexual body; and he studies without sympathy the damage pregnancies have wreaked upon her – anxiety lines around brow and eyes, changes that hormones have made to her skin, odd discolourations, hair growth one place, loss another, the accretion of yet more fatty tissue… And he, already unseemly thin in this company, wants only to be wholly unseen, absent, gone.




Sam Smith

Art Rupert Loydell




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