By:  Emily Fairchild


They unlatched your chest

looting vessels, bones and lungs but

didn’t see your heart;

you’d given it to me—

but willed it to him.

He retrieved it

when they left

the pine lid open

for a while he peered

at that unmoving heart of yours

truly. And he knew

he was stealing treasure

when he covered with his coat

your precious metal, numbed,

muffled in two oven mitts

wrapped in the scar-

let scarf you crocheted.

He locked it in another chest

at home where it should be,

or at least always was,

warming above the wood burning

fireplace in front of the rocking chair

you left and

he only leaves

to go chop more wood.