Poetry | ‘Haberdashery’ by Lorenzo Berardi | Issue 36 (Nov, 2020)


Mine is M (adult) Navy
Filters air pollution, viruses and bacteria
Gives me protection from particulate pollution,
Pollen and spores, dust, pathogens,
And smoke fumes
But does not hinder
Industrial chemicals or oil based particles
Such as paint.
It boasts adjustable ear loops:
Adjust toggles to correctly fit around the ears.
It’s washable:
Hand wash with warm water and soap,
Then hang dry.
Designed in UK, Assembled in China.
That M I mentioned at the beginning
Stands for Medium size;
According to the instructions printed on the back
Of its crisp white and blue case
This mask is ok for grown-up people weighing
From thirty-three to sixty-four kilograms;
I am next to eighty and I
Should have bought fabric to make my own
Or an L (adult) Navy.

Lorenzo Berardi is an Italian journalist and author living in Warsaw, Poland, where he works in marketing. As a freelancer, he covers Central Eastern Europe for several media outlets and is the co-editor of Centrum Report. His fiction and poetry have appeared in American, British, Canadian, and Italian publications. His portfolio can be found here.

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