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Friday, August 3, 2012


On August 3, 2005, I had a partial mastectomy.
Today, August 3, 2012, I celebrate seven years of being cancer free.
I am grateful. 


This tea, this cup of tea, made of leaves,
made of the leaves of herbs and absolute

almond blossom, this tea, is the interpreter
of almond, liquid touchstone which lets us
scent its true taste at last and with a bump,

in my case, takes me back to the yellow time
of trouble with blood tests, and cellular
madness, and my presence required

on the slab for the surgery, and all that mess
I don't want to comb through here because
it seems, honestly, a trifle now that steam

and scent and strength and steep and infusion
say thank you thank you thank you for the then, and now.

-Jo Shapcott

(Poem from the book Ten Poems about Tea)

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