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I, have breast cancer. small c.

I sit in silhouette, along a river, spent by lapping waves, the color of soder. Like hot liquid tin, flowing through. The veins of a decrepit riverbank, lifeblood to this garden of bones and crumbled leaves. Autumn is colliding, with the cold thrust of winter. People are flowing past me on the trail, preoccupied with last night's game... of negotiating dreams, shimmers of sleep, railing... against the rules of time. A woman wails past me, alone. Sobbing… into soft, abandoned leaves, they absorb and blur her footsteps, like wet multi-colored tissue paper. I wonder what her news is. Has she the same fate as mine?

I, have breast cancer.

small c. For I… am trying, to stay in ctrl. I tell myself, in mantra... "Bless my soul, please make me whole." I... am Newly minted. Newly diagnosed. Newly raw. I still haven't cried. Crying would make this real. No tears, from the poet who can glide on a wave of liquid escape. I can go dark deeper, than you could dare imagine. Downed, in fathoms of emotion. My winter days, can be weighted as coal-black snowflakes. Soot and noir. I, have cancer. small c. Sat in the hand, of a rare, pure, warm November day, 74 degrees of separation, from a dreaded… looming winter. The breeze, blowing away my fears and future visions… of nausea. nakedness. baldness. weakness. fatigue. I sit and watch the speckles of a firestar sun dance against my eyes, as to my shock… a young deer swims up alongside me. Paddling calmly upstream, against the forest's veins. She pulls herself onto the opposite bank. No one is near. I call to her. She moves up the wrist of the park, swims back over slick, wet skin, clinging to it's branches, the fingers lay on my side of this oasis. Uncertainty clings, she shakes it off. Moves on bank, rolls back into the woods. Sun is setting. The breeze... cooling. Headbanger thoughts reflect on the sky, which is floating through the surface of this fleshy liquid edge. I must leave this lake, of fluid deer and fire current… to get back to life. The other one. The one with a surgery ahead, two weeks near. If all keeps to plan, then rest, and radiation. I've an incredible husband, two beautiful, supportive children, a steadfast, loyal labrador... and the best family, friends and neighbors to lean on. I'm very early stage 1. I'm told I am lucky. I am beyond grateful for this, for my clock… is ticking.

A Savi Scout has been injected into my breast this week. I am radar controlled! Also, a consultation… with radiology. I met with the two incredible surgeons and doctors... and the radiology machine, that will save my fate.

Murals, mammograms… and ultrasounds, negative portraits of duct and cell, shadow and suspicion. An unwanted art gallery of films, framed in anxiety, to be added to that long ago, ever-threatened Permanent Record, the one started in our youth. Made from lifetime confections and confessions, curses, misdeeds... and secrets. And third-grade, indiscretions. Reassigned seating. My intervention, separated from my best friend, Kenny. Too much chatter. My life forever forward, powerfully ruined! Oh, to revisit the pranks and misdeeds of my youth. The ones perfumed in mud, puddles… and innocence. Played out, without a hint of a fate to come.

I, have cancer. small c. 

I… am strength. I… am light.

I… am a survivor. 

I will fight this fight this motherfucker, with honor, humor, grace… and love.

Fuck you, cancer. This too, shall go into my Permanent Record.

Along with many more pranks, overdrawn checks, loving, laughter… wine, speeding tickets, and misdeeds to come.

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