Sweet sore discoloration worn proudly on my body,
screaming it’s okay to be sexual.
Yes, I am a young woman,
a woman whose neck has met the mouth of someone else.
My dear hickies,
I shall not hide you and all that you represent.
I raise my chin high after a night with my man,
despite social stigmas.
I raise my chin high
high enough to show the markings of possession sucked across my neck.
His markings of ownership,
which represent the power of my submission.
The strength I found through letting go,
in trusting him,
in loving him.
My beloved hickies,
marks upon my skin raising awareness of judgement.
Yes, I am a young woman
with hickies on my neck,
not afraid of being called young and dumb
And the bruises left upon my skin are a reassurance,
a promise to my mind that I am loved.
A reminder that I am not alone.
Each time the soreness throbs in my neck
I feel him here.
I feel the desire to live, to love, to heal.