Sarah Lilius


Her heart passes through her
body like a stone.

The glistening muscle beats slightly
when she presses it to her chest,

the third newborn
she’ll never meet.

Young and powerless, without a heart
she’ll soon die over this hospital bed.

The white sheet already stained
with her effort.

Her blue patterned gown
torn at the hem.

Nurses step out to smoke
in the bathroom.

Labor was her own
pushing horse.

Through the snow lit box of a room,
mixed smell of bleach and people

Alone, she waits to be greeted
by the taker of the heart.

She imagines it will be a tall man
with crow dark hair but soft brown eyes.

The last man she will meet says nothing
but extends his gloved hands.



Sarah Lilius is the author of four chapbooks including GIRL (dancing girl press, 2017). Some of her publication credits include the Denver Quarterly, Court Green, BlazeVOX, Bluestem, Tinderbox, and Fourteen Hills. She lives in Arlington, VA with her husband and two sons. Her website is