I have three poems in Soft Cartel today – “hurricane”, “Edges”, and “The Boy in the Window”! You can read them here: https://softcartel.com/2018/08/03/three-poems-by-sam-rose/
My poem “I am recounting” has been published in Little Rose Magazine today! Read it at the link below, and to give you a feel for it, I did a quick sketch of what was in my head when I wrote it:
we take the afternoon off work to visit the nuclear
medicine department of the hospital
and in the evening I try to access some feeling and I ask
if I cry, will that help flush the radiation out of my body?
or will it just give the bags under my eyes a buttercup glow
as if my pupils had become suns
It was just a CT scan, just a tiny amount of radiation
and you are just melodramatic
you are just a girl, not spiderman
and nothing is happening
but that’s what burns
that still, nothing is quite happening here
no going nuclear, simply stoic
I compromise and just a couple of drops slip through
that is all I can offer
that is all life offers of anything
just a little at a time
just a little glow
A version of this poem was published in Autumn Sky Poetry Daily in April 2021.
My second poem over at Amethyst Magazine is out now. What a busy month! Read it here:
I also did a little drawing to go with this one, after not drawing anything for a very long time:
I am eating lunch
I am not fighting cancer.
I am eating my lunch.
And then I am going for
a walk in the overcast
bright of the day.
And then I will go back
to the office and write
some articles. I might
have a snack and
listen to some music.
There is no fighting here.
Just noticed today is the 8th anniversary of my big operation. I’d be eight years cancer free today… if I hadn’t found out two months ago that it’s come back. That stings a bit. Here’s a new poem.
I have two poems published in Terror House Magazine this month: “Twelve Months”, “Control” and “Exchange”. Read them here!
these are not tales of wanting to be close
but tales of need
tales of nothing else will do
tales of we are losing anyway
I tail off when we try to make sense
of what is happening
when all we have is positivity all the while
listening to others complaining about
the mundane, the unimportant, taking
suggestions from people who have
no idea pretending to make notes
in my invisible notebook – my no-book
wearing an invisible grimace as they speak
they don’t have to travel an hour to
talk to an expert, they don’t have to prepare
their bodies for impact, their brains for
impact, their nerves to be wracked
but we pretend that is okay
all the while wanting – no, needing –
to get away, to return home,
wherever home may feel today –
home is where I can tell these tales
before we trail off and stare into space
lost together but tied together
in the want – no, the need –
to be close.
My latest poem has been published by Eunoia Review! It’s called Post-diagnosis and I’m very proud of it. You can read it here – enjoy!
My heartbeat makes my loose-fitting
t-shirt flutter rhythmically
over my chest. I stop breathing
so I can see the full effect,
watch the fabric
fall in, fall out.
Braless breasts separated as if
in argument, creating a cavity
at my centre. Each tiny shudder
makes me feel thinner
than I am, more fragile
than I am. Makes me wonder
what I am.
Every pound of my chest disturbs
the white cotton, reveals my
torso as empty. A trampoline
for tiny ghosts, only the bounces
to be seen. Only the tremors
of the canvas to be found, the concave
and the rebound.
I am only little,
I am only gentle,
I am only nothing.
But we keep going. One organ at a time,
one anomaly at a time.
Keep cutting it out until there is
What will be left of me,
in the end?
Only tiny ghosts jumping,
only a tiny heart thumping wildly
Fall in, fall out.