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Loria Harris

Such Freedom

On the Fourth of July, we changed into our swimsuits, anticipating chlorine and popsicles. My
daughter told me that the eleven-inch scar straight down my belly looked ugly—the one that, in a
roundabout way, is the reason she’s here.

I didn’t wince when she told me this. She’s a child; she speaks her truth with no context to
temper it. She has not learned the meaning of ugly. She has not experienced the wrinkles of

No, I realized in that moment, I could only feel glad—grateful that I felt beautiful and knew I
always would. Grateful that, as far as I could remember, no one else had ever said that to me
Loria Harris is a graduate student in the MFA in Creative Writing program at Lindenwood University. Her work has been published in Mid Rivers Review, Kings River Review, The Freak, and others, and has received the Jim Haba Poetry Award and the Alyson Dickerman Poetry Prize. A lifelong creative, she holds a Bachelor's Degree in Music Performance, Certificates in Creative Writing and Literary Editing and Publishing, and she works as a professional portrait photographer.
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