Consolation Consultation ~ Frank Cavano

“Cancer, stage IV”-

neck

axilla

chest

abdomen

groin

 

Quiet as a graveyard winter,

they forget to breathe;

waxen figures, lined foreheads

 

As for me, I try to force

acceptance between

shallow inspirations.

 

The consultant speaks, his eyes

more alive than their faces.

He suggests to me a

new oral drug.

Wife, son, self

ask questions.

 

I’ll take the drug.

(To swallow all this

alone would be hell) but

 

family support is excellent-

visits

calls

suggestions

gifts

love

 

Six months later

I’m whole again.

Was it the pill alone that

worked? Was it the caring?

What, oh what, is healing?

And is it abandonment we

fear more than death?