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Notes to self – on how to heal a broken heart

by Aine Herlihy


Hush, baby girl, hold still.
Don’t wrestle or wriggle,
while I tend to this thorn.

Rest. Do nothing. Drop everything.
Sleep in your cradle.
Chase nothing but the white rabbits in your dreams.
Gently, gently,
remember once again how to sit inside your own skin.

Drink water from lakes that have held other heartaches.
Surround yourself with people who can sit silently, still.
Move in and out of grief as necessary, rolling as the waves do.
Cry when the urge comes and stop when it stops.
This can be harder.

Feel the boundary of your own body.
Lean up against solid structures,
when your axis is off kilter,
when the world spins at its dizzying speed.
Wrap yourself with wool,
for although it is summer outside,
now is a time for winter and hibernation. 



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