Wild Darkness

EDITOR’S NOTE: I have talked to and read the writings of women living with metastatic breast cancer, and many have made the point that their experiences seem to have no place in today’s cultural conversation about breast cancer. In this excerpt, we wish to give one such woman a place to be heard. You can . . . → Read More: Wild Darkness

A Poem from Navigating the Old Road

“I’VE BEEN DIAGNOSED…”

 

she said to me across the small

round table in the clattering coffee shop

on what had been a normal Tuesday morning.

 

No! I wanted to cover my ears,

but I watched the foul words leak from her lips

and fill the room

like a thick fog in . . . → Read More: A Poem from Navigating the Old Road

Speaking poetic truths about cancer

Steve Davenport is the author of two poetry collections: Overpass (Arsenic Lobster/Misty Publications, 2012) and Uncontainable Noise (Pavement Saw Press, 2006). The terrain of Overpass is the Illinois floodplain across the river from St. Louis; the figure who hovers above it all is a woman diagnosed with breast cancer named Overpass Girl.

Breast Cancer . . . → Read More: Speaking poetic truths about cancer

A poem by Gail Whitter, “Little Girl Lost

Gail Whitter is a mixed-media artist living in a small town in British Columbia, Canada. A poet in a former life, she spends most of her time listening to music and creating Spirit Dolls and jewelry. Little Girl Lost, from a collection of poems titled A Time for Ashes, is dedicated to her mother, and . . . → Read More: A poem by Gail Whitter, “Little Girl Lost”

A poem by Laura Ruberto, “Illness and Vanity Reflected”

Illness and Vanity Reflected

I stare in a bathroom mirror looking for my thick, bushy eyebrows. The ones I rarely ever pluck. The shapeless ones. The ones men have either been repulsed by or coveted. The ones I inherited from my father and passed on to my children. The ones my sister fondly says, “look . . . → Read More: A poem by Laura Ruberto, “Illness and Vanity Reflected”

No Apology for Happiness

I know this guy. It was thirteen years ago when he first set some words and gunpowder next to metal casings with the intent of being a truth-teller, a dangerous artist, a maker of things that do harm where harm needs doing. If you had asked him back then, he wouldn’t have been able to . . . → Read More: No Apology for Happiness

A poem from the book Overpass

Good Housekeeping

Somewhere a shelf of labeled containers containing formalin and bits of flesh. Somewhere a book waterlogs in a tub while three-personed cells batter a body. Aggressive. Invasive. Metastatic. Somewhere a container labeled right breast

flanked by four others. Lymph node, sentinel one. Sentinel two. Axillary tail. Breast skin. Somewhere Overpass Girl bruises, blows, . . . → Read More: A poem from the book Overpass

The Making of a Peaceful Death

“What a peaceful death.” This is what the head nurse in the isolation unit remarked upon entering my father’s hospital room shortly after he died. The room was quiet, to be sure, but it had not been a peaceful departure. I know this for a fact. I was there. Still, throughout the early morning, as . . . → Read More: The Making of a Peaceful Death

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