Heartless by Beatriz F. Fernandez

God Carried Her Away by Tyler Rayburn
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I was five when I performed
exploratory surgery
on my Raggedy Ann doll,
searching for her advertised candy heart–
but beneath the fragile cheesecloth
found only pure white,
hard-packed cotton stuffing.
I filled the empty space
with a gumball-machine gold heart prize
and sewed her up tight—
my amateur stitches zigzagging in a crooked line
across her now heart-full chest.


I was twenty when you left me
without a word, cruel or otherwise,
and I remembered a picture
in my Raggedy Ann storybook –
after the young workman
carelessly dropped her into the paint,
to make amends he dunked
her in soapy water, wrung
her through a clothes press,
hung her out to dry on a line,
clothespins clamped
in her damp yarn hair—
a water-crumpled face.

How I longed then
to be like Raggedy Ann—
legs dangling in the sunshine,
stuffed with fresh new cotton—
my brave, painted-on smile
still in place.

Beatriz F. Fernandez

Beatriz F. Fernandez has read her poetry on WLRN, South Florida’s NPR news station, was the grand prize winner of the Second Annual Writer’s Digest poetry award and was featured in the Latina Book Club blog. Her poetry can be found at Label Me Latina/o, Boston Literary Magazine, Falling Star Magazine (2014 Pushcart Nomination), Northern Liberties Review, Spark: A Creative Anthology, Verse Wisconsin, and Writer’s Digest. Her first chapbook, Shining from a Different Firmament, is upcoming from Finishing Line Press. Contact her at www.beasbooks.blogspot.com or tweet @nebula61