by Jill Talbot


I have a heart murmur—they say

I’ve had it since birth, not to worry.


I’m afraid I have the same

off beat arrhythmia as you—

a beat no one can dance to—




I tried to rid of your

crooked smile

but instead forgot

how to smile.


I tried to use reason

to put this off-beat-heartache-out—

damn straight.

I failed, again.

And again and again.

I didn’t even try to dance.


I don’t want to miss you

but it’s the only way to not

lose you completely.


Born with a murmur at St. Paul’s,


a pink beaded bracelet.


And that was the end of the beginning—

until I got on my knees

and begged to have it back.


Again and again.

Beating, beating,

I missed you



I missed you until


I could face a mirror,

beating harder,

I needed you.


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