World Cancer Day

Midnight Cancer
is a bottomless pit
where voices echo
around and around
repeating the same

Sooner or later, midnight
cancer changes to
more hopeful.
Somewhere in the sun
rises warm and round.
Birds are singing.

After a while,
morning cancer melts
into afternoon cancer
where it hides among chores:
cut the grass
clean the downspouts
drain the noodles.

Later, the house falls silent
and even the dog is asleep.
There might or might not be rain.
Without a sound
you are falling,
arms wide and circling.
It’s midnight
You have cancer.

~Mary Braddish O’Connor from her collection “Say Yes Quickly.”

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