I sometimes get so hung up on trying to "get over it" and "get back to my old self" that I often lose track of what I really need to focus on - integrating my past experience into my life. When we run from traumatic experiences and try to minimize the effect they've had on us, we perpetuate feelings of having a broken self. We've been impacted in a huge way by something, and if we deny the implications of the experience on our lives, we are denying an important part of our Self. I think this notion is what the second poem is getting at.
Staring down the drain
All evidence gone
All that's left
My soul you stained
Staring in the mirror
Who is this I see?
A shell of a person
Not the one I used to be
Nine years later
Will I ever be the same?
All evidence gone
Still I carry your shame
We think we get over things.
We don't get over things
Or say, we get over the measles but not a broken heart.
We need to make that distinction.
The things that become a part of our experience never
become less a part of our experience.
How can I say it?
The way to "get over" a life is to die.
Short of that, you move with it.
Let the pain be pain, not in the hope that it will vanish
But in the faith that it will fit in.
Find its place in the shape of things
And be then not any less pain but true to form.
Because anything natural has an inherent shape
And it will flow towards it.
And a life is as natural as a leaf.
That's what we're looking for.
Not the end of a thing, but the shape of it.
Wisdom is seeing the shape of your life
Without obliterating (getting over) a single instant of it.
*As sited on pp. 178-179 in Holland, A. (2007). Counseling in Communication Disorders: A Wellness Perspective. San Diego, CA: Plural Publishing, Inc.