Saara Myrene Raappana



once upon a time the forest opened like an atrium

to pull us in          we drizzled through

snow brambles into marsh           and in the marsh

there was a sugared house           that when it saw

the blush of us          unlocked itself      and once upon

a time the witch's heart          (which was a heart inside

a heart that beat inside           the homeland's chest)         

applauded us          she fed us lime and Frankincense         

and once upon someone had left a trail of stones like stars

to guide us back           after we'd killed the witch the way

you clear-cut and tidy any unpaved thing            once upon       

her heart clapped time and           dying           closed

upon itself           the witch is dead in brain     but since

her heart knocks on      we keep her up with plungers

in the vein             machines that beep          our medicine

is thumbs and fingertips           but once upon           a doctor

used her ear to find           the body part that never sleeps

the blood and chambered meat     that's like a rock squeezed in          

a fist rapping its knuckles on the sweet door of the body.




According to [the Internet], when scientists analyzed the (now powdered) remains of King Richard the Lionheart's heart, they found that it had been infused with things like mint and creosote and lime and frankincense.