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Christine Higgins

Martha reads poetry

Hello, Darling
published by Poetry Box © 2020
37 pages
ISBN 9781948461382
Price: $12.00


These poems explore the grief of both parents and what it takes to heal from within. In Hello Darling, Higgins gives voice to sorrow while holding fast to the love that is essential.

Creation of the Book

"When my daughter died in a car accident at the tender age of seventeen, I had to imagine what no parent ever wants to imagine—to go on living without a child. I had no idea how I was going to do that, but I knew that writing would sustain me. I've been writing since the 3rd grade. It was instinctual, like brushing the hair from your eyes. I took time off from work and began a daily blog to chronicle the journey."


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"Christine Higgins has, as we Lakota say, written a Death Song that acknowledges when sung, we are always present. This is poetry at its purest and best."

Andrew Brown, The Chugalug King

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Hello, Darling is the 2nd place winner in the 2019 Poetry Box Competition. The poems are both a tribute to her 17-year-old daughter who died in 2009 and an exploration of grief.

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Hello, Darling

Like other mothers who
give birth in hospitals,
in the very first moment
I was made to let her go.
I had dreamed of her
asleep on top of me,
still folded, still protected
as she was inside my womb.
But the umbilical cord had been
wrapped around her neck, so
as hard as I pushed, she just kept
sliding back inside the canal.
My baby who struggled to
be born was whisked away.
She needed oxygen.
I saw her pass by overhead,
the nurse dipping her like a dance partner
so I could glance at her perfection—
a wholesome peach.
I said hello, darling
and she was gone.

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Extreme Polly Pocket

Tiny rubber turtlenecks, rubber shoes,
rubber skirts, rubber pocketbooks.
How the stubborn, unyielding materials
frustrated my little one.
I had to be the dresser of these tiny dolls,
while she was the stage manager,
director, producer--all the different Pollys—
lounging at swim parties,
sleeping in condos,
driving around in cars too big for them.

Every time—suddenly so upset
she had to stop playing
and take a nighttime bath—
she would abandon the dolls
and leave all those accessories
strewn on the carpet.
Later I would put them away—
Red shoe, striped skirt, blue dress,
the Polly who wore
a bathing suit with winter boots
hanging out the back of her jeep
hollering with joy.


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