Yesterday I had a late morning appointment with an oncologist who debated the meaning of the “increased enhancement,” or swelling, in my brain scan, again, as either the result of tumor growth (recurrence) or radiation necrosis from treatments I underwent in 2014. This latter possibility is still the preferred bet. And yet there’s a new little satellite spot that may be nothing or it may be the result of a hairlike filament of new tumor popping up elsewhere.
Welcome to my world. Nothing really new since October 2020 when I went through the emergency room and missed Theo’s birthday and rode home with bad results among snowplows because is was snowing.
Yesterday also I heard a thump on the front stoop during dinner cleanup and my author copies of Bad Astrocyte arrived. The book is far and away my darkest, randomest, and funniest collection of poems, which is exactly what one might expect of a year of uncertainty. It also happens to be the first of my collections to be written in the new house in Independence. It consists entirely of minimalist sectioned poems from which (brace yourself) I have removed every comma and period I could find. No terminal punctuation for the terminal.
Should you wish to “go there” with me, send a mailing address: We’ll settle up later. I’m not even sure what the book costs—maybe $15? And postage is whatever it says on the sticker, right? So you can PayPal me whatever, whenever, or not. That said, here’s a link to my online store: https://cameronmorsepoems.bigcartel.com/product/bad-astrocyte.
I have invited my friend J. Khan to open for my virtual book launch reading:
Topic: Bad Astrocyte Book Launch
Time: Oct 16, 2021 07:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 719 2795 5177
So join, if possible!
But that’s not all …. BA is a book I most certainly could not have written upon first receiving my diagnosis in 2014 over seven years ago when I was too afraid to even google the word, “glioblastoma.” In it, I delve into and draw heavily from not only “clinical fact,” as one blurbist writes, but the stories my comrades in the horror of this kind of cancer. I daily returned to a particular Facebook group called GBM SURVIVORS TO THRIVERS for inspiration in any form and it was there that I discovered the wonderful photograph Kathleen Greeson and her subject Ashlea Hodges have bestowed upon the cover of a woman wearing an all too familiar radiation mask—underwater!
The toll this book took on me personally made it necessary that I, well, write another book! That’s out now, too, though I have no copies on hand, so order it online if you’re interested. If BA is a death book, The Thing Is is alive, and a good tonic. It’s a return to nature, to daily life and the objects that populate it, an attempt to rekindle my first innocence and love of poetry. Cancer takes a back seat in it and only speaks up once in a while.