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Poetry and Medicine
January 19, 2005


Author Affiliations

Poetry and Medicine Section Editor: Charlene Breedlove, Associate Editor.

JAMA. 2005;293(3):276. doi:10.1001/jama.293.3.276

Like a ham, or bacon! Irradiated,
preserved, a foodstuff that will never
go bad! I’m saved, as by salting,
or smoking, or aging. I’m
hardtack, I’m salt-pork, I’m
beef jerky. The cancer’s
been remedied, eradicated, as if
it were just a bad habit. It’s been
vulcanized, subjected to chemical
action or heat, rendered
infusible or chemically inert.
I’m rubber, I’m plastic, let death
try to mess with me now!
I’ll stick in his craw!