Chris Tusa

(01.01,72 / New Orleans, Louisiana)

Ode to Cancer


Imagine a tiny black flower,
the nurse says,
blossoming in your spleen.

Already, I can feel the radiation
burning in my bones,
the CAT SCAN machine
like a shiny white coffin.

A sky purple as a bruise
drifts outside the hospital window.
Lights blink on the wall
like tiny red eyes.

Day after day the doctor waits,
for my face to fall off,
for my eyes to roll out my head

while you slowly short-circuit
the wires of my brain,
chewing through the meat of my days
with your beautiful black mouth.

Submitted: Saturday, July 09, 2005

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