Beautiful Tumor

imagesA poem of mine was recently published on Elephant Journal, about an experience I had while looking through the microscope at a patient’s tumor. Check it out here, and if the poem spoke to you in any way, please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts!



1 thought on “Beautiful Tumor”

  1. A very interesting perspective, Shadia. I’ve never been quite able to put it into words as articulately as you have, but as a chaplain I’ve often wondered, in the same vein, about the mind-body connection as it relates to illness. I’ve had any number of patients who, metaphorically, have had psychological issues “eating away at their insides”. Their bodies’ expression of this mental distress has often been cellulitis. I’ve noted that thyroid nodules sometimes occur in people who live their lives with a figurative “lump in their throats” when it comes to being able to express themselves freely and without fear. In my work, I find frequently that the widow or widower with a “broken heart” develops cardiac problems, particularly within the first year after the loss. And so it makes perfect sense to me that emotions kept inside, dreams unfulfilled, inability to express what one is thinking, and the feeling of being stifled or misunderstood by the world can trigger the activation of cancer cells that might often remain dormant within each of us – even when this activation is not a benevolent phenomenon… because life, even if that life is aberrant, needs to burst forth.

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