She trundled round from store to store,
unsure what she was looking for.
Behind their hands, whispers went round:
Big Sweaty Martha’s back in town,
Where does she live, what does she do?
But no-one had the slightest clue.
A constable moved in next door.
He hadn’t noticed it before,
but chanced to see, one windy day,
all Martha’s washing (mostly grey).
His boggling eyes took in the size
of Martha’s bra — what a surprise.
He’d seen her leave the house, quite dry,
and come back sweating — wondered why.
Her meagre buys, by observation
could not have caused such perspiration.
But what confused him more than that,
she left the house, her bustline flat
and came back sweaty-bosom-bloused.
His copper’s instincts were aroused.
He waited till she’d gone inside,
crept to the window, where he spied
her plucking items from her bra –
a clock, a mug, a dinky car,
two sets of knives, a toilet brush,
a can of strawberry-mango crush.
This haul of mixed paraphernalia,
told him that she had kleptomania.
I should arrest her now, he thought.
No wonder that her bra was taut.
He knocked and yelled: ‘Come out now, please.’
But at the door, with trembling knees
she stood so pitiful and scared.
His words dried up and he just stared.
Though big and sweaty she might be,
he’d fallen for her mightily,
and realised she wasn’t bent,
but needed help, not punishment.
He took her hand, his love to swear –
then went and burned her brassiere.