heart

you picked up

some dust

as you tumbled across the Nevada desert

and there are nicks

to the left artery

and a gash in your southern hemisphere

from the cliffs of California

you left some blood

in the river Colorado

and there is a vein

struggling to keep up

with your trot homeward

the Lakes of Michigan

are calling to you—

you lost somewhere on the Great Plains—

a stick and handkerchief

slung over your bold red shoulder

you hear the water

and a cavernous rib cage

and you look to the sun

and ask it not

to make you leather

but to carry you forward

©Julie Bolitho. “heart,” Poems. Ukraine and Other Poems. Leaf Books Press: 2007, pg. 17.

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© Julie Bolitho 2018