I Am, Without A Man

Looks like it’s time to cleanse my heart again,

I open my palm, crusted and dusty from age,

Opening it like you would an ancient egress,

Or something like a sandy shore,

Yet instead of waves smearing the gritty land askew,

My palm pushes the deposit mud encrusting my heart,

This ooze of my past,

And it ripples and folds cross this metaphorical heart,

Onto the floor.

Underneath the mire is a lustrous surface,

A smooth and sultry mass,

See how it pulses on it’s own,

The sludge that once slowed its steady beat,

Now leaves it to thump thrifty and hard,

As if this sludge had intentions to return again someday,

And slow it’s vital purpose like it once had.

The heart reacts to this cleansing like a derelict might,

If he were asked to stay a night at a Hilton suite,

Unsure of the permanence of this luxury,

He steals and indulges in every amenity procurable,

The heart will now feel sagacity towards a creeping realization,

As though the indispensable process its been gifted,

Cannot be carried out without someone to pump the blood themselves,

It feels as though I, a woman,

Contingent upon myself alone,

Cannot carry on as such,

Without the sludge,

Without a man.

I hope you all enjoy this poem. I wrote it recently as we were discussing gender and gender roles in my AP English class and some of the articles we read by Rebecca Walker and other writers gave me some inspiration to write about being an independent woman. I’m not really a feminist, but I feel like this poem can relate to any woman who sometimes forgets that we don’t need the sludge of life, or other people, to help our hearts beat and help us live. We live all on our own.



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