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Archive for the ‘Friendship’ Category

Last week on twitter, when hearing the news of Roger Eberts death, I tweeted this:

If cancer has blown your world apart, every time you hear of another death, a piece of you is cut out and trampled on.

It must have struck a chord with many others, it was “retweeted” and “favorited” and passed around many times.
It was what I was feeling, I didn’t know Roger Ebert. I used to watch Siskel and Ebert on Saturday mornings to see what movies they were bashing and sometimes praising and often I’d argue with the TV screen. But hearing of his death, like hearing of the death of Nora Ephron, or that girl I went to high school with, or the grocery checker who was always so nice… it affected me, they all affected me.

Cancer has blown my world apart, so often that I’m not sure if it was all one big explosion or several smaller ones linked together, like a mega roll of firecrackers rolled out and lit… the bangs go on forever — I hate firecrackers.

The aftermath of cancer, the picking up of the pieces, the stringing reality back together, the return to a normal existence… those are the things that take longer than it did for the cancer to take over a body and destroy it — cancer lingers. When someone dies of cancer, it doesn’t end there, because cancer has invaded you, your life, your world is now a world that contains cancer. It has you in its grips forever, you are never free of it — death does not destroy cancer.

It is the constant background noise to your life, the ceaseless ringing in your ears. I am not brave before it, I cower, I lower my head, I try not to be seen by it. But, it makes sure I know it sees me, there is no corner dark enough to conceal me from it.

I forget, briefly, in those periods in between hearing how its taken over another persons body. I forget. But, never for long. The periods of forgetfulness become shorter each day. Each day I hear of a friend who has been diagnosed, a spouse of a co-worker, a favorite professor, a screenwriter who made me laugh. When cancer has blown your world apart, every time you hear of another death, a piece of you is cut out and trampled on.

Pieces of me are scattered around — pieces from my father, pieces from my mother, pieces from my brother-in-law, pieces from my dog, pieces from friends and co-workers and friends of friends and complete strangers… I have been trampled on by cancer.

I wish I could tie these thoughts up like a beautiful package under the tree on Christmas morning — when you open it, out pops bravery and triumph and fearlessness. But, that’s not the case. There are no ornate pink bows big enough to cover up cancer… it’s ugly and ruthless and cunning.

Often now, my fear and cowering is accompanied by an over-bearing hatred. Maybe that’s what we should hope for, that we become so pissed off at this monster that we are moved to action, not just reaction.
After all, if you believe they put a man on the moon, the ability to stop this creature shouldn’t be far off.

Please visit the following sites:
Lisa Bonchek Adams Giving Page
Lisa Adams
Lisa Bonchek Adams Blog
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt

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I am here
though I wonder where that is
a trail heading forward
or winding back around
a bridge crossing the stream
steady
strong
a few wobbly planks

I am here
looking in every direction
testing which way the wind blows
scattering my thoughts like pollen
following each nudge forward
curious
brave
imperfections are beautiful

I am here
dancing with my thoughts
listening to my life
singing my own song
the words float through the air
cartwheeling
tumbling
but always, I am here
~
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Don’t forget to visit my new Etsy Shop!
Becky Brewster Sain’s shop on #etsy http://etsy.me/VsVXu4

or, click over there ~~~~~>

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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untwisted creations – Etsy

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everyone blames the poet
when there’s not enough blood on the page
flowing around the crevasses of every mind that begs the poet to bleed a bit more
grabbing hold of a soul here and a heart there
because everyone wants the poet to take it all away so they don’t have to stay there anymore
pausing when you read a word
wincing from the pain
laughing when you know you can’t feel anything that isn’t written in the blood of the poet
you take the poets words and walk around in a haze
just bleed a bit more
till the fire goes out and the wave stops rolling and the wind mellows to a breeze
everyone blames the poet
when the answers are so well hidden
like a flawless shell you spot when you’re walking that thin line between there and here
when the pretties aren’t neatly tied in a bow and handed to you
you have to walk a little longer
you have to bleed a bit more
everyone blames the poet for not supplying the world with wings but they keep saying jump
just jump
cut open a vein and let each word drip out
slowly
effortlessly
puddling on the page for everyone to read
everyone blames the poet when they watch the waves come in and wash it all away
but we know
they’ll just bleed a bit more

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lightning strikes
i cover my eyes
weaving its way through the cracks
in front of us all
shouting at the storm
we steady ourselves on your words

lightning strikes
the waves start to crest
we close our eyes and dive
unafraid
we see you walking on the ocean
our beacon
our breath

lightning strikes
sudden and full of anger
we are unafraid
linking arms because together we are strong
and you
shouting at the storm
a chorus of screams building behind you

lightning strikes
trembling and wet
the waves beat us relentlessly
and still we stay
facing the storm
and you
in front of us all
walking on the ocean

I wrote this poem for a dear friend, Lisa Bonchek Adams, who recently found out she has metastatic breast cancer. She is sharing her story with all of us here — you need to read her, it will change you forever.

I also started a facebook page for her that I am inviting everyone to join called, The Adventures of Flat Lisa, so that we all can take her on our adventures or our daily lives. We are all truly connected in this world, so share yourself.

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the shape I take
watching you navigate this weary world,
jumping over blocked paths,
cartwheeling around a sea of naysayers.

an old tree in the backyard,
once it was second base and now

it stretches out for you…
twisting and distorting its extended branches
reaching for you…

but never grabbing hold.

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the moon is bloated with the thoughts being cast its direction tonight,
so many people staring up at the same sky,
we’re alone,
until that moment we realize we’re not,
that moment we see the moon hovering above with all the thoughts of complicated beings just like us.

we think a touch can’t heal a broken heart,
a glance can’t fill an empty soul,
a laugh can’t scare away the lingering darkness of nightmares.
we think we are useless.
we listen to our lies.

the moon hangs in the sky daring us to stare and be cradled in its glow,
it creates a path out of darkness,
we follow,
it leads us deeper into the night,
shining on the brokenness of the others gathered there.

we can’t mend the torn stories in our mind,
playing doctor with each thought before we let it loose,
we crave wholeness,
clinging to the pieces we should have thrown away,
we listen to our lies.

the moon slips behind a lingering cloud,
we hold the fading light in our open hand,
we are still,
hoping the glow will brush back the night,
all of us staring at the same sky.

we pause.
we listen.
we offer silence and hope and understanding.
we gather the broken pieces and the scattered truths and the hushed epiphanies.
we stare at the bloated moon.
we listen to each others lies.
we brush them away.
we leave them behind.
we grab our complicated stories.
we ignore the lies we tell ourselves.

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look across the open distance
a light
glowing
leading us to where it is
showing us everything in our path we have no worry from the things we can not see because the light is always there never fading bringing us back on course when we sway too far but even the light knows we have to walk in the darkness, alone, sometimes

… and yet
when we are standing under the light we can only see what is close and we are afraid to look past into the unknown of that darkness because there are things waiting for us out there

underneath the light it looks different
faint
small
the light only reaches those few feet in front of us
we squint and make our eyes small to see just a little further we force our eyes wide open hoping we can see past the barrier the light has created with the darkness so careful to stay in the boundary of that light because the darkness overpowers us and strips us of the want to move rooting our feet in the ground below we are powerless to move beyond

… and yet
from this distance we can see there is nothing to be afraid of and the things that frighten us stay away from the courage that leads us forward, always forward

the beauty of the distant light
calming
drawing us near
we navigate the obstacles in the path leaving the barriers behind we are not moths drawn to a flame we are strong complicated beings moving forward through the often darkened path sometimes afraid but courage is born from the fear that so often halted us now we will soar to the distant light, alone, sometimes

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Thank you Hyde Park Poetry Rally!

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