When the Heart Murmurs

This thing we call a heart that beats persistently in our chests is a sturdy yet infuriating and fragile thing. It functions without ceasing for decades despite neglect and, eventually, age. But a single word can tear it in two. It can deceive us and mislead us. It can cause us to soar into fits of helpless euphoria or sink into the deepest wells of depression.

Voltaire once said, “The mouth obeys poorly when the heart murmurs.”

Sometimes more than the mouth careens wildly out of control when matters of the heart require logical decisions.

But what would we do without it? The world would certainly be a cold and forbidding place.

For this, the month of St. Valentine’s Day, we bring you stories of the heart. Stories of broken hearts, of torn hearts, of crystalline hearts, and hearts lost up the proverbial magician’s sleeve.

First, from Raven Jakubowski, “Sister Margo’s Heart.”

Followed by “Love Letters on the Nightmare Sea,” by Rachael K. Jones.

Next up is “The Magician’s Assistant,” by Paul Crenshaw.

Finally a second-run offering: Shawn Proctor’s “Heartwood,” first published in Anthology Philly, a collection of short stories from Wragsink Press.

Happy Reading and Happy Valentine’s Day. May some kind person bring you chocolates!