Myth of the Vagabond Heart


Poetry by
Lynne Procope

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Myth of the Vagabond Heart

If I gave back this heart, it’d go bump in the dark.
Give back this heart and what ferocious thing
is born to spring- to scream from my mouth?
If I cut loose my heart she’d be stripper-naked,
tearing you to bits, let slip her innocence
like a mask of the assassin. She, Heart, slips out
the back door, taking all you don’t nail down.
My heart’s lost her panties one time too many,
she packs a spare, never asks what you do with them.
She leaves easily, bends over herself, hands
cracking at the knuckles.

My heart loves
the snap/marrow-crunch sound.
Heart‘s an open book, a body bare-boned,
spine-cracked, a vessel so wide, you’d think
she likes to be vulnerable, to be full
of what least becomes her. My heart’s got
a soldiers back, bones of failsafe, hold like booby trap,
kiss of trip wire, she’s a minefield of small explosions
and it’s no longer safe here.

My heart has overdone her dangerous metaphor.

Heart really wants a thug for a lover;
or a man with rock face for hands, a woman
who brings her own dick to the party. My heart
cannot believe I just said that. My heart has
an animal intelligence with a god’s libido. Her voice
explodes like the fourth of July. Still she’s just
another dirty immigrant bitch, she doesn’t really like you.
It’s not as easy as you think to break her.

The vagabond heart whispers, watch where you
put your hands, bring something ragged and unfed
to her table, risk, dream or fall apart already. She is
fascinated by the complex structure of my disasters.
Her love is in the details but she’s become cautious
with this missionary body. My heart wishes
I’d stop telling her secrets; she’s the fat lady
hunched over the juke box wailing all night.
Whispering to the bartender, that it’s not over,

the song is not over. My heart misunderstands boundaries,
is too much of a machine. This heart fears she lacks wings
but she’ll make engines from the shoddy ventricle,
from the left behind. Heart’s a bowl, warmed in the hands,
a great bloody beast, a bruised myth of imagination.

Lynne Procope

(used with permission, thank you Lynne)

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