Our mother's heart resides inside

a coffin, tiny in

her arms' embrace, wrapped cautiously,

protective, around the

.

First love of her life. Our mother's

heart is fragile, more so

than even porcelain, restless

as a newborn, and just

.

as soft. Our mother's heart is cast

of iron, liquified,

burning hotter than hellfire

and nearly as bright. Our

.

mother's heart is buried deep, but

not quite six feet- shovels

can only go so far before

they begin to reach bone.

.

Our mother's heart still beats within

the empty casket of

her chest. Our ears listen to her

distant song, close enough

.

to lull us to sleep, yet further

than her body would let

know. We hear her breathe a sigh-

relief that one of us

.

made it out alive.