Saturday, December 12, 2015

Shahé Mankerian: Dear Teacher

Do not tell us about the ribcage
shielding the sinuous chambers
of Aristotle. He did not snuff

the internal lamp or allow
the woman’s heart to beat faster
than the man’s. Let the French

invent the stethoscope to avoid
placing the ear on the cleavage.
We've heard it before: "Grab

a tennis ball and squeeze it
tightly: that’s how hard the beating
heart labors." We’re more likely

to have cardiac arrests
on Monday mornings. You told us,
the heart rate of a horse mirrors

the human subject touching it,
then will a cracked mirror echo
the broken heart scraping it?

*Published in Altadena Poetry Review / Anthology 2015, this poem was nominated
for the prestigious Pushcart Prize in the same year.

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