Poem “Heart, Felt” by Shane Schick for Before I Turn Into Gold Online Anthology

(c) Geoffrey Wren

Heart, Felt

You were full of answers about 
what happens to the heart,

as though you’d spent a lifetime
breaking the end off a question mark 

and using it to punctuate 
all the sad stories you would sing,

or letting it fall on a roulette wheel
that never bounced on the black.

But can’t we at least agree on this:
that the heart is led by nothing 

except itself, that it kept taking you
by the hand and setting off

to the heat of Hydra, to a home,
giving you the permission 

you needed to put down your pen
and pick up your guitar, to speak

in a timbre so low you sounded 
like your heart was in your throat,

yet never letting life happen to it, 
beating but never bystanding?

The heart kept occurring to you,
even when you tried to forget it

those late nights in Montreal,
or amid monastery meditations.

Even if the heart was acted upon,
it was you who felt what ensued

time and again, you whose music
allowed us perceive what transpired

every time we listened, and listen 
to this day, limited by the distance

between any artist and the audience
that experiences the art. Who knows

what really took place, what love 
you gained and lost. What happened 

is secondary to the song — so long 
as we feel close to the heart of it. 

Bio: : Shane Schick is the founder of a customer experience design publication called 360 Magazine, His poetry has appeared in literary journals across the U.S., Canada, The U.K. and Africa. He lives in Toronto. More: shaneschick.com/poetry. Twitter: @shaneschick Subscribe to my 360 Magazine newsletter

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