The Human Heart

A poem, by Elaine Ee
The human heart begins beating about 21 days after conception
It is located in the middle of your lungs
Behind your breastbone, slightly to the left
Encased in a sac that protects the heart,
Anchors it to the surrounding body parts and
Stops it from overfilling with blood
It weighs about 300 grams and is roughly the size of your fist
It comprises mostly smooth muscle
Each day, a heart beats an average of 100,000 times and
Pumps 7,500 litres of blood
Your heart has four chambers:
Two atria and two ventricles
The left ventricle is the strongest
And has enough force to pump blood through your whole body
Electrical impulses from your heart muscle cause your heart to beat
With each beat your heart contracts and relaxes
Systole and diastole, systole and diastole
And the amount of blood ejected by each systole
Is called the stroke volume
So you can see why when blood stops flowing to
A part of the brain
It is called a stroke.
Also known as a “brain attack.”
Your whole life is in your heart
That’s what people mean when they say
My heart is in your hands
Treat it gently
Please don’t break it
If a heart is broken
The heart muscles suddenly weaken
The left ventricle bulges abnormally and you experience congestive heart failure
In mild cases of a broken heart, your ventricle returns to normal in two months
In extreme cases, you die
When your heart is broken you feel physical pain in your chest
Your heart grows sad and lonely
It slows down
Feels heavy
And aches
This type of broken heart a cardiologist cannot fix
So take care of your heart
All 300 grams of it
Because when it is weary
It weighs so much more
And if you love someone
Give them your heart
All 300 grams of it
And it will mean so much more

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