Wednesday, April 13, 2011

For Colleen

On the day we met,

I was struck by two things:

how your face opened up

like a book of kindness

and how completely in tune you were

with your own body.

You were confidence in motion.

I was in awe.

And my brother was in love.

And each day since then,

you have been

the sister of my heart,

a gift to my family.

Time and again,

I have seen

how you harness seamless energy

of mind, body, spirit:

on the basketball court,

on the dance floor,

Even in the throes of labor,

when you reached down

and delivered your own son

from your own body--

one of the most beautiful things

I have ever seen.

And so it seemed impossible

that the words breast cancer

belonged anywhere near your name.

A cruel incongruity.

A ridiculous mistake.

And I wouldn't have blamed you

if you had slammed that beautiful,

open, kind face

shut for a while.

But you didn't.

You wrote your story for all to read.

And you triumphed--

through surgery and radiation and fatigue

and teaching and mothering.

You came out cancer free!

And I just wanted to tell you

how grateful I am,

and how beautiful you are,

and how much I love you.

My sister,

my hero,

my friend.


  1. This beautiful tribute gave me goosebumps and momentarily took my breath away. Thank you for introducing your readers to Colleen. She is an amazing woman, that sister of yours.

  2. Lydia, you're very welcome! She IS amazing indeed.