She tries writing him poetry, but he doesn’t read poetry. She tries painting him, but she paints the soul rather than the face, and he can’t recognize himself. She tries going a week without food, but he thinks she’s on a cleanse. She tries to dance for love, but he can’t hear the music, because he is the music. Finally, she gives up on romance and fancy, and decides to be as direct as possible.
She opens up her chest like the double doors of a grand white bird cage. She reaches inside and approaches her heart with great care, so as not to startle it. It flutters and chirps, but does not object to being handled. She encloses the fragile little creature in her hands, removes it from its solitary cell, and in a gentle gesture tosses it to the air, where it frantically flaps its wings; stationary for a sweet moment, when in an ecstasy of freedom it doesn’t know where to land. Then it soars low, as if falling, only to flitter up again like a courting butterfly and fly of its own volition to the hands of her lover.
Lacking the imagination necessary to interpret the true reality of her action, he catches the beating, bleeding, meaty heart thrown at him. Her chest cavity is open. The stench is overpowering. Repulsed, he flings the convulsing thing to the floor and runs from the scene. Before he can be accused of murder.
Andisha Sabri is an Australian expat currently living and studying in Reading, the UK. You can read her poetry in Potluck Magazine.
Artwork: Catrin Welz-Stein