2 June 2004 | Vol. 4, No. 2

Heart Part Two

What is the shape of the artificial

heart? Accordion or tin toy wind-up bird,

artichoke or closed fist.

Perhaps it is the smallest version

of Paraguay imaginable.

What makes some of us

embrace the under-

pinnings of skin, all that surrounds

the skeleton, the blood, the cloudy tissue

woven to muscle,

the nerves and the sputum,

the spinal cord's cavity

and its own soft brine?

Terrified of the physical

body I prefer to picture

myself reduced to safer


joints like piano keys, vascular

system of southern ivy, tendons of rubber

bands and twine,

a singing thrush of a heart.

About the author:

Allison Titus's work has previously appeared in Indiana Review and Brooklyn Review.

For further reading:

See the complete list of work by Allison Titus at 42opus. Browse the contents of 42opus Vol. 4, No. 2, where "Heart Part Two" ran on June 2, 2004. List other work with these same labels: poetry.

42opus is an online magazine of the literary arts.

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