Feminine Attributes

by Shelly Wozniak

Flexing like a man,
I attempt to remove a ring from a hand
swollen with excess fluid,
marking a cycle
giving life,
serving as a reminder that I am a woman.

She wants me,
but not my structure.

Closing praying eyes
she creates me from a rib –
removing my breasts,
the shape of my hips,
giving me biceps I have no use for.

We are daughters of Eve from different trees.

Hers, tall and in the sun,
mine, absent an Adam, flourishing in indirect light.

We take in heat,
and grow from water.

Two similar compounds differing in an element,
combustible, burning,
attempting through reconstruction to fill the space
that leaves women empty.

I walk through her gated garden fearlessly,
armed with the knowledge
that I cannot be
from a place
that was never meant for me.

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