Yesterday I had my annual mammogram. It is unnerving and shocking to think that in this country, with all of its vast wealth and medical advances, that breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for African-American women and that the breast cancer death rate is 60 percent higher for African-American women than their white counterparts. Have we ever considered, too, about how other women around the world, particularly those with minimal or no access to quality health care- how do they cope with breast cancer?
I have a poem in the current issue of Yellow Medicine Review; A Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art, and Thought. It is called Homesick Spirits and it is about a traditional healer, in a village setting, in
Cote d’Ivoire, trying to deal with
the onslaught of a seemingly new phenomenon taking rest in women’s
breasts-which of course is breast cancer.
Buy this issue, read the poem and perhaps think about how you can initiate some small change for a huge problem.