Chemo-hangover and steroid withdrawal, like icy prods, seek deep sadnesses and chase them to my surface.
Robbed of my fortitude by these chemicals, I writhe.
But I’ve learned, these months, that this darkness will fade.
‘Til then, apt words from Phyllis McGinley…
Sticks and stones are hard on bones
Aimed with angry art,
Words can sting like anything
But silence breaks the heart.
— Phyllis McGinley, “Ballade of Lost Objects,” 1954