The Normal Heart

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New Rivers Press, 1981
78 pp.

“The Normal Heart”

Born with one two-chambered
heart, the infant boys
died within days.
These children who could not bear
to grow apart
in the primitive confusion
of their valves
shared everything that mattered,
breath, blood, heat.
It wasn’t that they didn’t want
their mother, whose flesh harbored
their intimacy but that
there was no room for her.
Her ordinary love, which spewed itself
all over the delivery room
severing herself from herself
for their first gulp
of her own oxygenated element
was too bloody and complicated
for this pair
joined in a fierce and lasting

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