What is a heart?
I looked it up in the dictionary expecting to find several explanations and stumbled upon just two:
A band we know and love, they are Crazy on You....
Our most hollow organ, our unarguable common ground with all animals.
I expected valentines day and LOVE to make an appearance in my search.
But, no, simply muscle diagrams and the rhythms of blood
I've been putting pressure on my heart for as long as I can remember.
It started innocently enough, the love I had for a packet of crayons:
FRESH WAX, APPOINTED NAMES FOR THINGS LIKE STRAWBERRY AND SKY.
I got older and my heart took on more responsibility: boys, pitterpat.
I hurt my heart: Drugs.
I fed my heart: Exercise.
Hearts travel: Europe.
Hearts curdle: Waitressing.
Take heart: Empowerment.
Eat your heart out: mmm hmmm.
We are unfair to hearts.
They have four jobs and none of them involve our feelings.
Their assignment is to receive and pump.
When you wake up, your heart has been working all night.
I'm no doctor, but, your grumpy "I'm not a morning person" attitude, that's your brains, my friend.
Those are my brains.
The love stuff, the passion, the blood boiling anger, heart breaking compassion, nostalgia, hope, regret, it's pinned so hard on our double crescent shaped muscle that we forget it's very function- beating.
Waiting for a heart in a waiting room is the greatest reminder of what a heart is- the vessel to a complex brain, the ground floor to an individual skyscraper.
Our "hearts" break, or bruise, ache
Our "hearts" sing and swell.
Our "hearts" make or break everything we ever experience.
We curse them just way too often and I know you know what I mean by that.
I see paintings of hearts everywhere: Graffitied, penciled, printed, psychedelic, tattooed, instagrammed........
Hearts are Yellow, lavender, diagrammed, puffy, pierced, red, red, pink, red, so often red.
And yet, (with the exception of fist size), in all their individuality, hearts are the same:
Four chambers, piles of tissue, a network of nerves, snapping valves.
Hearts can be shared.
It's possibly too much to hope for.
It is a lot to ask for.