This is a poem I wrote my senior year of high school, and it’s very different from most of the poetry I churned out back then -it’s simple, concise, and conveys emotion without explicitly stating the emotion. Most of my other high school poetry consisted of long-winded diatribes about various forms of anger (I was an angry little beaver). I really hope no one ever finds most of those angsty ramblings.
My Fragile Heart
My fragile heart is made
Of ice, not glass
Not white or stained
But when it breaks
It sounds the same
I thought of this poem one very early morning waiting for the city bus. It had snowed recently, and there was some ice in the gutters, so I made a bunch of noise stomping on it. The ice shattering sounded like breaking glass, and I started to think about how literature often describes a “fragile heart” as made of glass.
I thought of myself as “special” back then, so I imagined that I was very different and my heart must be made of something different, too. Ice, unlike glass, is cold but not static. I’ve often felt that my entire personality is in a constant state of upheaval, much like water changing forms. So, “my fragile heart is made” means that yes, my heart is fragile and I felt hurt very easily, but it was made of something different than the norm, something cold with the potential to change and warm up.
Even as rebellious a teenager as I was, I was still a 16 or 17 year old girl when I wrote this. I wasn’t completely innocent, but I wasn’t completely corrupted either. Frosted would probably be a better description of my personality, then and now; I try to hide my less admirable feelings and facets of personality as much as possible. But I know myself well, always have. “Clear, not white or stained” means that I can see right through myself, weaknesses and false bravado. A white heart would mean I was pure, yet refusing to see things for what they truly are. A stained heart is someone corrupt, beyond saving.
I feel like the last part is pretty self explanatory – my heart may be different, it may be cold, I may be sincere, I may try to hide my feelings, despite all that, my heart was still fragile and would certainly break. And at the point of heartbreak, all the other factors are basically moot. It doesn’t matter what we’re made of, because when we break, we all hurt. “But when it breaks” implies the certainty of the event. “It sounds the same” means that I would still be hurting just as much as a person with a “glass” heart.
Now, I couldn’t begin to explain why I felt the need to explain this poem, but there you go. I have a headache in my eye, and you don’t need to know that but it means eye strain! Dun dun dun.