TODAY THERE IS TIME
to touch the silken stillness
of myself, map its landscape,
the missing left breast, to lay
my nervous palm softly
as a bird’s wing across
the new plain, allow
tears to fall yet rejoice
the surgeon has scraped
away the cancer cells.
Today there is time
to contemplate the way life
opens, clams, parts, savour
its remembered rosemaries,
spreading purples, tight
white edges of hope, to travel
the meanings of repair, tug
words that open parachutes.
© 2011, Myra Schneider, all rights reserved. This poem is posted on Into the Bardo with the permission of Ms. Schneider. Any further reposting requires her permission.
© 2011, cover art courtesy of publisher. All rights reserved.
Today There Is Time is an excerpt from:
Writing My Way Through Cancer Jessica Kingsley Publishers (2003), and
Multiplying The Moon Enitharmon (2004)
Editor’s note: The opening poems of Multiplying the Moon are Schneider’s response to her experience of terrible illness. In the aftermath of fighting breast cancer, she found herself writing poems that explore transience, death, and survival from many different angles. The main theme of `Voicebox,’ the long fictional narrative in the middle of the book, is communication; the poem follows the connections and disconnections between its main characters. In a short poem sequence, the poet draws on findings from the 1901 census to re-create her father’s early life, and the understanding she gains helps her to feel a new closeness with him. This is united by the theme of investigation of the self and its relationship with the outside world.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Myra Schneider ~ was born in London in 1936 and grew up on the Firth of Clyde. She is the author of four poetry collections from Littlewood, three novels for children from Heinemann, and has three poetry collections published by Enitharmon: Exits, The Panic Bird and Insisting on Yellow. With John Killick she has written Writing for Self-Discovery (Vega, Chrysalis Books) which was re-published in 2002. Her book ‘Writing My Way Through Cancer’, was published by Jessica Kingsley in 2003. The book is her fleshed-out journal from the year 2000 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It includes poem notes and poems and a section of therapeutic writing ideas.
3 thoughts on “PERSPECTIVES ON CANCER #20: Today There Is Time”
There is peace and hope in this one, Myra. Thanks for sharing it with us here.
Very descriptive poem and part of the healing process. Blessings.
I remember you profiling her here before, Jamie (or maybe on Musing by Moonlight). There is hope in this one–and time. Thanks for sharing.