Diamonds for the cancer crown

plump-plum rhia hills

painting:  Plump Plum    by Ria Hills


I am a nine year survivor of advanced cervical cancer.  I wrote a number of “cancer poems” during 2008-2009, when I was undergoing radiation.  This is one of them.

It’s written in the form  “Diamonte” which means it’s diamond-shaped.  You’ll see the pattern.   This is not a particularly pretty poem!


Diamonds for the Cancer Crown


Rank, fulsome

Clutches, rasps, repels

Garbage, offal, bakery, garden

Lures, flows, delights

Heady, spicy




Gooey, oozing

Drones, buzzes, insinuates

Sermon, complaint, rhapsody, praise

Burbles, canonizes, compliments

Delirious, delighted




Flaw, fault

Encroaches, impairs, devours

Tumor, lesion, scalpel, graft

Stitches, smoothes, heals, thickens

Souvenir, badge,





Treatable, gullible

Palpates, softens, plies

Fruit, flower, sprout, shoot

Crunches, breaks, cooks

Curable, shrinkable



mary schuler ruptured radiation

painting:  Ruptured Radiation  by Mary Schuler




<a href=””>Spicy</a&gt;

Published by ahiggins2013

poet, birder, senior citizen, cancer survivor, Catholic sister. Eight books of poetry published: At the Year’s Elbow, Mellen Poetry Press 2000; Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky, Plain View Press 2007; chapbooks: Pick It Up and Read, Finishing Line Press 2008, How the Hand Behaves, Finishing Line Press 2009, Digging for God, Wipf and Stock 2010, Vexed Questions, Aldrich Press 2013, Reconnaissance, Texture Press 2014, and Life List, Finishing Line Press, 2015.

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