Metronome - Melody Wilson

Even when young and in love,
I resisted listening to heart beats.
Rested my head on my husband’s chest
for warmth, not sound  ̶
afraid to start counting.

Still, you have ticked me
through time, puffed rosy
for a grandchild’s smile
shrank to a brittle fist
when betrayed,
flapped in circles  ̶
a one-winged bird
the year my father died.

I have ransacked you for reasons,
questioned your motives,
plumbed your depths
for peace  ̶  swaddled
those I love in your fibers.

Today I learned you are imperfect  ̶
one side a little thick, something
about an atrium, or a chamber,
discord between two sides,
an aging couple talking over
each other.

You probably skipped a beat
when I was told. But I didn’t notice,
didn’t count, even then.

Melody Wilson lives and teaches writing in Oregon. After some poetry success in college, she tried other creative outlets, including weaving, stained glass, and quilting.  She learned so many crafts that her husband teased that she had to limit her interests to ten. She even dabbled in horses. Then, after twenty years of teaching, she remembered poetry. Now she writes in a house filled with dusty weaving looms, rusty sewing machines, and enough yarn to start an Etsy shop. She doesn’t care. She reads her poetry aloud to her three dogs and the members of her bi-coastal poetry group Zalon, which is a gift of pandemic life. Her recent work can be read in Quartet and Cirque.  Upcoming work will be in Whale Road Review and Tar River Poetry.