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Fragile Woman by Jocelyn Mosman

Women today are choking on
Their own self-loathing,
Bleeding out their pasts
Like their cells are ready
To jump off of bridges.
Suicide has been made out
To be sexy,
But sometimes,
Our slit wrists are
Severe weather alerts,
And we are sounding out
Our own unnatural disasters.
We bled until our palms
Were clasped together
Dripping our prayers
Onto cracked canvases.
Women today are keeping
Their hearts like angel wings,
Growing a feather with every
And I know women
Who are flying right now.
They bled out too many
Days without sunrises
And kept tally marks
On their flesh,
Waiting for their turn
To breathe again
Without having to bite their own tongues,
And swallow down
The bloody saliva
That tasted like their unspoken
I know women whose DNA
Turned against them,
Created a pallet of brown
And grey and emptiness,
Never satisfied with their
Shade of pretty.
I know women whose
Hearts were breaking
Without the metaphor.
They were pleading
With any god out there
For a new heart before
Theirs erupted in the ER.
Cancer has a way of taking
Women’s hearts,
And teenage girls are bleeding out
Broken futures.
I know women who are performing
Exorcisms on their own spirits,
Hoping that their unholy ghost
Paints their wings white
With every slice of the knife.
Fragile women,
Our bodies are made beautiful,
And self-destructive.
We weren’t meant to bleed
Like martyrs.
Don’t cast down your faces,
But look into the places
Of your body
You’ve never seen before.
Every hair is a part of your halo,
And every scar is a rose petal
For you to garden
With your self-loving.
Fragile women,
We were born to be strong,
Ashes being relit
Into the fire
We started from.
Let our bruises become candles
Guiding our angels with broken wings
And misplaced spirits
Back home.

Jocelyn Mosman is a 19 year old student at Mount Holyoke College. She has been published in several anthologies, is currently in the publication process with her second poetry book, entitled Soul Music, and is an active member of poetry groups both in Western Massachusetts and in her home state of Texas.