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Posts Tagged ‘cancer’

Reynolds Price and Me: The Tale of Two Rhodes Scholars, Part 2

By Casey N. CepJanuary 11, 2018

I found myself returning to the work of Reynolds Price in 2011, the year he died. Price passed in January and that summer I served as hospital chaplain.  Within a week of starting at the hospital, I went looking for one of Price’s books. After A Palpable God, Price had mostly left religion alone, writing novels, stories,…

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Poison Ivy and the Path of Grief

By Christiana N. PetersonNovember 1, 2016

Though its fruit should’ve been in season, too many harsh Midwest winters left the leaves of the apple tree to wither. At the time of harvest, very little fruit hung from its branches. But my daughter climbed anyway, her arms wrapped around the low-hanging branches, her feet bouncing against the trunk so she could swing…

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The Neglected Garden, Part II

By Caroline LangstonAugust 16, 2016

Continued from yesterday. The dollhouse my father was building for me was still unfinished when he draped a boat tarpaulin over the top, to protect it against the summer rain. The doctor had told my parents that there was a tumor in his lung. He was being sent to the M.D. Anderson hospital in Houston,…

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The Neglected Garden, Part I

By Caroline LangstonAugust 15, 2016

When my father built the house where I was born, the land was flat and there was little vegetation on it. It had once been the Curran family’s cotton plantation, my mother later told me—sold and subdivided for a row of little Cape Cods and ranch houses, all arrayed in pastel asbestos siding. Including the…

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The Long Regretful Wait

By Tony WoodliefMay 19, 2016

My mother’s quavering voicemail was right: I hadn’t called in a long time. I justified my neglect with the assurance that I’d called on her birthday, I’d called on Mother’s Day, I’d made my dutiful calls even though I suspected she was mad at me. I made them and she didn’t answer. I hadn’t called…

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The Wounds of Resurrection

By Christiana N. PetersonApril 19, 2016

As my husband prepared for an Easter sermon a few weeks ago, our dinnertime conversations during Lent turned to Jesus’s appearance to the disciples after his resurrection, to the episode where poor Thomas is saddled with his unfortunate moniker. Carravaggio painted a terribly potent picture of Thomas probing Jesus’s wounds, his lord’s flesh curving over…

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Thawing at the Edges

By Christiana N. PetersonMarch 8, 2016

When the spring teases me one day, outplaying the winter dullness for just an afternoon, I go for a solitary walk. In my seven years in the Midwest, I’ve come to dread this part of the year. It’s not the liturgical season of Lent or the lament that comes along with it that I dread (lament…

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Above Calcutta

By Laura BramonDecember 3, 2015

The summer before you died, I hid on the roof in Tollygunge. I walked part of the way home from Sudder Street and by the time I got to the apartment building where I was staying, the sooty red sunset had spent itself. Dusk sifted in the quarter’s dim air, and from the park by…

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All Unhappy Families are Alike

By D.G. MyersSeptember 4, 2014

In commenting on my latest essay for “Good Letters,” a man “disabled from an odd condition” confided that, when his health crashed, he found himself abandoned by those he depended upon: “My family avoided me thinking that I repre­sented their destiny.” Years later “they still do,” he added. Not everyone who lives with advancing death…

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How to Talk to the Dying

By D.G. MyersAugust 22, 2014

Since being diagnosed nearly seven years ago with a lethal cancer, I have backed my old friends and new acquaintances into a quandary. What do you say to a dying man? Strangers don’t seem to have any difficulty. Now that chemo­therapy has reduced me to a tattered coat upon a stick, I am routinely praised,…

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