(from the forthcoming Neptune Blue, Salt Publishing.)
Someone put my heart on Wikipedia.
Just a stub.
The entry is unkind,
I hope that any reader clicks on by
as Dionne Warwick might advise.
Anyone who had a heart
would do well
to set it apart,
ring fence and firewall and snap up its domain
into your stuffed and mounted travesties
Don’t flatter yourself that I’d want yours,
to wet my beak
in the inkhorns of your vanities.
When you see me you say,
‘One for sorrow.’
When I see a magpie,
I count myself too,
and every time it’s, ‘Two for joy.’
your teeth will bend right back
as they encircle me
but in they go.
And now the quicks of all ten nails are gone
from scraping the splintered deck.
You have the better half of me.
Who thought you'd be so inflexible?
I'll never put on a life jacket
NB. Paul Vermeersch also references 'heart' in his poem about a Baboon in Reinvention of the Human Hand. Hope Kate and Wills have a happy marriage. From me, in one.