I Try to Tell My Heart about Puberty

Every day I think you have to talk to her.

But mornings go on blithely, sinus rhythm

louder than my will. My tongue takes

no part – I give her a book, my heart

loves books. I find it hidden under

the gall bladder. I show her Metasequoia,

teach the term invagination – she reaches

up to hush that lullabye. My heart wants

her blood to be the thing she never
thinks of, unconscious rush. My heart 

will not become another organ – 

oh, uterus, my heart does not wish

her future to unfold the way you have.

She wants to chatter with the other hearts,

swinging in their pericardia, giggling
in those heart-hammocks, eat cinnamon

candies while they dip tampons into red
Kool-Aid, learn this new term – staunch.

Sonja Johanson

has recent work appearing in the Best American Poetry blog, BOAAT, Epiphany, and The Writer’s Almanac.  She is a contributing editor at the Eastern Iowa Review, and the author of Impossible Dovetail (IDES, Silver Birch Press), all those ragged scars (Choose the Sword Press), and Trees in Our Dooryards (Redbird Chapbooks).  Sonja divides her time between work in Massachusetts and her home in the mountains of western Maine. You can follow her work at www.sonjajohanson.net 

Contributions by Sonja Johanson