Your Poems Don’t Have Heart

Monochrome, Emma Lassiter

He pioneered the theory that if

you hit a road sign with your car, it’s

yours. Lifting 35 mph into the backseat,

the sides were sharper than expected, 

slitting my fingertips.

We mounted the sign back at his place, 

used small magnets to pin up reminders.

The wrong way across the bed, my

ear to his chest, his heart beats irregular. A 

note on the sign, he misspelled cardiologist. 

With Bandaids on my fingers I cracked the yolk into

the petri dish, the embryo’s heart settled onto 

the surface like oil on water, pulsing. 

Talk about beating eggs. My professor dumped

the yolks down the drain and let the water run.

Today I had to get rid of another lab coat,

Chambered hearts are messy. I think it 

was Aristotle who called the heart a

receptacle, where the blood lies 

loose. The frog’s body is tossed away. 

Its heart will keep beating on the metal pan, 

not knowing the difference.

About the Author

Lindsay Sletten · Goucher College

Lindsay Sletten graduated from Goucher College in Baltimore as a Biology, Art, and Creative Writing student. “Your Poems Don’t Have Heart” first appeared in The Preface.

About the Artist

Emma Lassiter · University of Central Arkansas

Emma Lassiter is a senior studying creative writing at the University of Central Arkansas where she is the Editor-in-Chief of The Vortex Magazine of Literature and Fine Art. She has interned with Et Alia Press and The Oxford American, and her photography has previously been published in Salmon Creek Journal. This piece first appeared in The Vortex.

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