Head, Heart – a poem when life hurts

There’s been so much pain over the last few weeks. I’m conscious of the temptation to steal the victims’ thunder – I wouldn’t want to do that. Stealing their thunder is like making them victims all over again. But all of us are touched by what has happened in London and Manchester (and other trauma beneath the media radar).

This is a poem by American poet Lydia Davis forged by inconsolable grief. It’s a cry for help from heart to head, particularly appropriate for times like these. The amazing resilience of those who lose so much, the bravery of those first responders prepared to run into troubles and the wishes and prayers of those who want to respond show head and heart work well together, but the heart must always call out “MORE”.

The poem, written in 2007, is called Head, Heart.

Heart weeps.
Head tries to help heart.
Head tells heart how it is, again.
You will lose the ones you love. They will all go. But even the earth will go someday.
Heart feels better, then.
But the words of head do not remain long in the ears of the heart.
Heart is so new to this.
I want them back, says heart.
Head is all heart has.
Help, head. Help heart.

PS Here’s a linked post I did in the wake of the Grenfell Tower fire