Last Friday, I ran my fingers against

The rough walls of an artery

A vessel ravaged by years of hardening


And I thought of my own,

The places where I’ve tried to suppress,

The places where it’s become

Hard like stone


Over time, aches and pains

Build up, accumulate,

The wear and tear

Fibrosis and scarring


Unwanted growths of hurt and shame

Cling so tightly it’s hard to let go

Of past mistakes and worries


Perhaps I need an ablation to

Destroy the dead parts of my heart

Revive the brokenness within me

Burn away my doubts and anxieties


I’m on my knees

Here’s my heart, take it, replace it

With one of clay

Shape it, mold it

To better reflect a deeper compassion

Like oxygen I need

A life-giving fountain


The hole in my heart

I had tried to fill with

My own hands

The achievements I accomplished

Fleeting praise and validation, like grass withering


Let my heart beat to the rhythm of yours

A pulse of restoration, renew my motivation

Fix my inmost being on the things unseen

That will last long after

My heart stops beating


Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Anna Delamerced enjoys spending time with family and friends, eating food, and listening to people’s stories (while eating food).