Pain Has Defeated Me Today


Pain Has Defeated Me Today

"As he was rolling around on the floor in agony, Winston knew that nothing in the world is worse than physical pain." --George Orwell, *1984*

When I first realized that, yes, this cancer is going to kill me,
I was so afraid.  I have had a phobia of cancer since I was little.
As if anyone needs a phobia to fear cancer!
But I fought through the fear; I said to myself, I'm still here:
And even if I have only one more month, or a week, or one day,
I'm here now, and I will live in the now, as it slips away.
Fear was  very great, but I overcame fear.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
And when my friend Brian got cancer, too,
My lifetime's very best friend, of whom I am so proud,
I lost almost all of my fear for myself; I feared for him.
It still looked like my life first would be through.
Brian had therapy to help him deal with my death, when it came.
But who can look through the fog of the future deep and dim?
Brian was killed by an ER doctor who starved him for nine days,
And kept him from water, and also deliberately allowed
His ascites fluid build-up to reach a heart-damaging phase.
Because he wrongly thought that Brian wanted hospice,
And that I was keeping him from it; but, as I told him,
Brian didn't know what hospice meant, and Brian wanted to live.
He also wrongly thought, and told nurses, that Brian was a gay brat,
So the ER doctor said, the world would be better off without.
He also wrongly thought Brian's cancer had brought him to the ER;
When really it was a bad prescription mistake in two drugs mixing:
Brian was on fluoxetine for depression; then, for bad hiccups,
He was given chlorpromazine: no drug interaction check was made.
Together they cause extreme toxicity--but not beyond fixing--
Both cardiac toxicity and neurological toxicity; that is why
Brian couldn't walk that morning, but not why he had to die:
He died because a doctor decided to kill him, and did.
When I lost my very best friend Brian, I felt the pain of flame,
And for months I suffered as I futilely called out Brian's name.
- - - -  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
But even then I pulled myself out.
I felt grateful for all my blessings still, in spite of any doubt.
Even then, I looked at the sunset and the sunrise,
And realized that the main miracle was in my two eyes
That could see such beauty and bounty and blessing.
All my weaknesses I began confessing,
As I faced my nearing death, my fearful demise.
Yes, I knew there would be pain.
Yes, I knew that perhaps it all has been in vain.
But I thought my love of life could be proof against pain,
As it has stayed strong and full of light despite all blight,
And the ever coming on of the final night.
No matter what would happen to me, I knew
Than within me lay the invincible summer of Camus.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
What now is my attitude?
I still see and feel the wondrous beauty that life gives.
I still love my own life, and the life of each one who lives;
And I feel toward the tall towers of time that drown me,
For my fleet times of joy and love, great gratitude.
How long I walked upon the earth, and did not grasp I trod
Upon my own destiny.
Now all my joyful memories and days are on the skid,
And I cannot escape mad misery.
But I am still grateful for the light I loved while it lasted,
And for all the love I've felt and found, and all the joys I've tasted.
I know that I did not create myself; and I know that whatever did,
Deserves thanks, and the honored name of God.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
But now I have terrible pain.
Pain that seems to stain all gain and wipe away all graces;
Pain in my back, legs, and right foot, and in unmentionable places.
Those latter are the worst, with which my tortured life is cursed.
Yes, I still find moments of joy; but the great love of life
And huge happiness of heart that once was mine to enjoy,
Which stood strong against fear and grief,
Has eroded under the waves of pain beyond belief.
The final end of all this, I cannot foresee.
But at least for right now, this moment--pain has defeated me.

Written by Michael LP, aka PoetWithCancer
aka (thanks to Luna Marie) Mr. Poet
Written on Sunday, January 15, 2012 6:46 PM PST
60 degrees F.  Humidity: 19%  Forecast: overcast
Copyright (C) 2012 by Michael LP.  All rights reserved
(Copyrighted for my estate)

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HarverTomsson commented on Pain Has Defeated Me Today


I have always admired your courage and poetic sensiblities. I wish you the gleaning pleasures left in life and a hopeful respite soon from pain. A wll lived life shall have it's reward. God will see to that. Have faith and hope forever, and love will move in to live with you.

Poetry is not the expression of personality but an escape from personality.

T. S. Eliot (1888-1965) American-English poet and playwright.

PoetWithCancer’s Poems (224)

Title Comments
Title Comments
Happy Winter Solstice 1
Seasonal Ring 1
My Thanksgiving 0
God's Word 1
Under the Date Tree 1
A Few More Times 1
Divine and Diabolical World 0
Summer-Brief 2
Seasonal Ring 0
Shakespeare's Birthday and Death 0
Special Brian 0
I Remember Brian 0
Light of Life 0
Pain Has Defeated Me Today 1
The Old, Old Words 0
Home Is Where the Heart Is 0
A Sad Contemplative Christmas Today 0
Moments of Memory; In Memory of Moments 0
Sun and Rain, Joy and Pain: I Miss My Friend Brian 0
Dehumanized and Clinicized--N
Not Full 0
Love, Loss, and Lennon 0
Dying Dream 0
Brian's Pure Love for His Lady 0
Two Loved Ladies Undergoing Surgery Now 0
The Masks Fall Off at Midnight 1
Prime of Life 1
Low Energy and Less Time: And Too Many Things to Do 1
Happy Veterans Day, Brian 0
Happy Veterans Day, Brian 0
Thanksgiving 0
Autumn of Year; Autumn of Life 0
Brian's Birthday and New Year's Eve 0
Under a Constant Star (9/11) 0
Deep Time 0
Is There Anything Out There 2
Classics in the Closet 0
Nobody 0
Feeling the Wind 0
The Wild Doe and the Hunter 0
Happy Birthday, Brian 0
The End of the World: Saturday, May 21, 2011, 6 pm PDT 1
Brian's Special Smile 0
Broken Birth 0
Missing Brian 0
Focus: Today, Happy 0
I Love You, Brian 0
The Ways and the Words of You 1
Stone Cry 0
Amore Immortale 0
Reality and Unreality 1
Lyrical Life 1
Easter 0
Shakespeare's Birthday 0
Friends During Need 1
Death--A Play--or the Final Act 0
Moods 0
I Was Worried About You 0
Song of Life 2
Me 1
Oh Mother of My Life, My Mind, My Heart--Happy Birthday (Sunday, April 3, 2011) 0
Your Money or Your Life 1
Poesis 0
A Last Look at the Moon 0
Tears for Brian: My Tears Spring Suddenly 0
Seventeen in the Past 1
Clusters 1
Suffering and Dying Where Love Is Least 1
Looking at People in a Restaurant, Talking to Brian 1
Brian Cannot Come Back to Me 3
Seven for Heaven: Human Haiku/Senryu, On Two Straight Guys Who Loved Each Other 3
Five Human Haiku (Senryu): Faithful to the Perfect Form 0
The Scream 3
Life Is 8
Following My Friend 3
Small Moments (Written by Patricia, for Brian) 1
For Precious Michael (Written by Patricia, for me) 4
Dream of Life, Dream of Friendship, Dream of Love 4
The Power to Create 4
A Single Fortune Cookie 6
The Meaning of Life 2
Dreamless 3
Prayers 3
Lost Love 2
I Thank My Mother for My Birthday and for Her Wonderful Mother Love 3
Lennon Lost His Life: And Now, So Has Teena Marie 2
All the Way with Part Way 2
Loving, Living, and Dying 6
Dreaming and Seeming 3
Poem Prayer 2
Science, Poetry, Philosophy, and More 2
Super A, Abuelita1--Th
ank You for Your Support, Caring Love, and Understanding
Wonderful Connie 1
Someday-Dying 2
Between Yes and No 3
Love of Life 1
Zappa the Magnificent 1
In the Midst of Life 2
Only One Death 1
Real Illusion 1
The Unknown 1
My Apparently Known Possible Fates in This World 1
No More Me 2
Someone 2
Leaving Life 1
Precious Jade 2
Fear and Grief and Going: Unguilty of the Grave 1
Using and Losing Time 1
Loveless Life 2
Good Life, Good Grief 1
Dreamless 1
Ontology versus Oncology 1
Now Time 2
No Present, No Future: All Past 3
Hippocratic Hell 1
First Light 2
Almost At the Limit [--A Sonnet] 1
Death-Trap 0
Broken 1
Birthday Termination 1
Moments 1
First and Last Cry 1
Love 2
Final Fragility 1
End of the World 1
Tripping 1
Seasonal Ring 1
Gifts that Go and Still Stay 1
Sidney Says: Advice to Poets and All Writers 3
Enthusiasm: God Within 3
Send Me Your Good Will, or Pray For Me--Please 1
Feeling Each Other's Pain 1
Snow Man for a Low Man 0
Explanation of My Poem "As If the Last" 2
New Year, No Love 2
Poetic Form 0
Guilty Pleasures: Not Guilty 2
About Me 1
Live, Laugh, and Love 4
Nothing Special 2
Why a Writer Writes 2
To Sarah Y and Her Beloved Little Boy Who Cries Out: Again! 1
I and You: Unique and the Same 1
Where's the Compasssion in Our Health Care System? 0
Lonely Girl, I'm Feeling the Way You're Feeling: But We Can Both Make It Through 3
Health-Care Reform and Hell on Earth 3
Psyche 3
My Bucket List (For Now) 4
My Most SCARED Moments 2
Children of the Stars 2
Passing Life's Test 1
Why More Now? 1
Remembering My Grandma on Thanksgiving Eve 3
Another Thursday, Another Hammer 4
Thursday's Hammer 1
New Birthday 2
Let Love of Life Light Up the Psyche of Fawn 1
To Angel Eyes: The Wonders of Your Life 1
Regarding the Lack of Fall in Texas 2
Light for the Fight 2
All That I Have 3
Shine 2
As If the Last 2
Here Now 1
All in Time 2
The Exile 2
Incurable and Terminal 4
Tripping 2
One More Tomorrow 1
My Dash 4
One of Two Is Stronger 1
No More Romeo; No More Juliet 1
Friendship and Life 1
Snow and Life 3
Live Spelled Backwards 1
Sarah Y 2
To Fly 2
My Cry 1
Moment of Madness 2
Fall From a Great Height 1
A Memory 1
Less Life; No Loving 2
A Loser, True 2
Time Stop 1
Final Sleep 1
Entre Enfer 1
Flying Life 1
One Would Have Been Enough to Make Life Worth Living 5
Once 3
The Haiku Form 2
Bridge to a Comet--Your Visits and Comments to Me 4
Get Well Soon, Luna Marie 2
Winging It (a human haiku, or senryu) 3
Light Locomotive 2
Skite, Where Were You Today? Where Are You Tonight? 2
Angel's Wings, Angel's Voice 4
Shy, but Not Too Shy 2
High Coo 4
From Night to Night 3
Life's Journey's End--Cut Short by Cancer 4
Love, Light, Life, and Night 2
Fear and Courage 1
Death in Life 3
Unknown Final Fate 3
To Right a Poem 4
Crab-Like Concealed 4
Soon 2
All in the Mind 3
Ebony Shine 3
On My Nephew Naming His First-Born Son After Me 5
Love, Loss, and Lennon 3
Eqinox 4
Feeling My Heart 5
The Best Person I Ever Knew: My Best Friend--Brian 2
In Memoriam, George Difficult 3
Lovers 7
Art 5
Things to Do 4
Plane on Fire 3
Ameliorator 5
Thanksgiving 7
Worlds of Light 24
Failure's Fortress 13
Song of Life (Original Version) 13