In the latest installment to The Vulnerability Series, Jessica Hoops continues to unmask her own vulnerability through creative writing. In her poem “Evolution,” Hoops explores the fear of falling in love, using a character who is metaphorically described as both a doe and a lioness. In an anxious attempt to disguise her vulnerability and survive, the doe adopts the cold, untouchable, “brazen” persona of a lioness; taking on the appearance of a predator to avoid becoming prey. Yet interestingly, it is her unintentionally exposed vulnerability, manifested as “the slightest of staggers,” that causes the poem’s other character (“he”) to realize his love for her. Read “Evolution” below.
He silently waits for her gaze to meet his,
wonders if her doe eyes are still flecked with gold
and glowing with suppressed adoration;
wonders if she’ll seek safety in the shade of his arms
or bask in the sun of his smile.
His adrenaline spikes when she passes,
a brazen and beautiful predator
with the easy grace of a huntress
and eyes that don’t need to look up.
Golden on the surface, reinforced with steel.
Then, a break
in her stride,
the slightest of staggers,
a single step that imprints itself
on the surface of his heart.
It was not the lioness he was falling in love with,
but the bow-legged deer,
whose essence had been sacrificed
to natural selection, suppressed
by her own desire to survive.
Read “Powerful Vulnerability pt. 2: The Fullness of Selfhood and a Vulnerable God,” the previous entry of The Vulnerability Series.
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