birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

White Hose

One covered button on the shoulder I think. It closed the neckline of a long-sleeved lace sheath that covered my arms to my wrists and went down to the knees. Beneath the sheath was a shift of some sort, with a slit in back of the knees. The double layers were easy to wear I guess but the lace was scratchy on the skin. The dress was made to my measurements by my mother. It was boxy, so that must mean I was too. I was still 18. This was my freshman year of college, and I was required to wear a specific dress, specific in the color: white. I wore it with white hose. Bone? Winter? When you get into white, the shades start becoming important. I must have worn flats, maybe with a chunky heel. Or am I remembering low-heeled pumps from 6th grade, the shoes that were sort of grown-up, when girls' styles were over for me and shoe selection was pretty limited, especially if I did not like shopping. Or maybe these were a sandal style. Oh, they were those satin shoes that are dyed to match prom or bridesmaid dresses, probably from Payless ShoeSource. Un-dyed though. Plain. No fun. And uncomfortable with the buckles that’ll cut into your ankle bones and leave metal marks. It was a horror to wear white pantyhose, especially control top. But maybe it was good? Few people look good in tight white anything, not to mention feel good. And those reinforced-toe nylons look lame with open-toed shoes. Shoes that are slippery on carpet. And then there were pearls. A gift from my mom I think. Pearls with a hook closure that would make them easy to lose, I would learn later. None of this outfit was good for me, but my mom did a good job with it. She even let me pick out the pattern.

Uniformity

A Milkmaid's Form?