Forgetting myself

For just one moment,
I forgot myself–
Who I am,
Who I think I am, and
Who I think others think I am.

It was a relief–
To be free of myself, and
All the things associated
With who I think I am.

For one moment, I had the chance
To be something thoughts escape,
Something time doesn’t own,
Something with no need to die.

Note: Honoring the teachings of Jack Kornfield.

Equanimity

Are we so special
that the day should bow down to us,
and that we should look down upon
all that surrounds us?

Just for today,
I will honor all I encounter,
and I will try my best
to see the divine running through everything.

I will remind myself that life,
in all forms is special,
and that no form
is more special than any other.

Though blinded by my own eyes,
I will do my best today
to see myself in others,
and others in me.

Asking for Help

Why do we wait so long
to pray for the help we need?
Rest assured there are no perfect prayers
that must be memorized and said perfectly.
“Dear God, help me” is the perfect prayer,
with the right intention behind it.

Admitting there is a Higher Power–
One larger and more powerful than us,
is the perfect beginning point.
Knowing that we need help,
coupled with the willingness to ask for help,
is the perfect start to receiving help.

Being able to recognize help when it arrives,
is requisite to the help helping us.
Allowing the help we receive to incubate,
and fill our healing cocoon is vital
to our help taking hold and transforming us.
Let’s not wait so long to ask for help next time.

Cancer’s No Joke, but It’s Okay to Laugh

Laughter won’t kill me, so why not bust a gut?
No harm in a chortled snicker or a devious snort
at the prissy old lady in the room next door
who punctuated the air with a loud squeaky fart.

Sitting with my bags in the northwest corner chemo suite,
I heard a nurse exclaim: Dunkin’ Donuts can’t be beat.
Then, in unison I heard everyone sigh:
the donuts are gone, so sad we could cry.

Almost peed my pants, laughing so hard,
when a senior oncologist let down his guard—
sharing advice with a young resident doctor;
straight from Mother Goose, my what a shocker:

“For every evil under the sun,
There is a remedy, or there is none.
If there be one, seek till you find it;
And when you find it, get thee behind it.”

A ride in the elevator, so very telling about life,
Shall I smoke a joint before chemo, a man asks his wife,
A punch in his chest she landed with might,
I feared at that moment there could a fight.

I urge you to give humor a chance,
Let jokes and laughter through your life dance,
Some craziness at times all of us need,
Laugh at yourself, start a healing stampede.

On Cancer and Poetry

When we have cancer,
we are willing to try anything,
including poetry,
to stay alive.

Poetry helps us step delicately
into the vast river of life,
wash off our assumptions, and
flow with the river’s healing currents.

Cancer is
the stretch of challenging rapids ahead.
Let’s brace ourselves, and
ride them with courage and grace.

Did you know poetry sometimes
can be more dangerous than cancer,
by bringing out things inside us
that we never knew were there?

When we have cancer,
let’s give poetry a try—
It’s alchemical brews
can turn our lead into gold.