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Poetry and Medicine
April 25, 2012

The Miracle of Will

Author Affiliations

Poetry and Medicine Section Editor: Charlene Breedlove, Associate Editor. Poems may be submitted to

Author Affiliation: Lincoln, Nebraska (

JAMA. 2012;307(16):1675. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.322

They say the miracle of you is your heart,
half of most,
scarred from staged repairs,
beating past their finish lines.
I say it is your smile.
They say the miracle of you is your malrotation,
they put back into place,
so no one will ever notice.
I say it is your legs pumping your bicycle,
fast as lightning, up and down the private drive.
They say the miracle of you is your ability to fight infections,
despite asplenia,
all because of their immunizations and prescribed doses of antibiotics.
I say it is you selling lemonade and handmade
pottery on summer neighborhood sidewalks.
They say you are one of a kind,
one in a million,
they can't find another quite like you.
I say exactly.

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