As a psychologist specializing in clinician-patient communication, Greg has worn a few hats: university professor, associate dean, foundation executive and independent consultant. Diagnosed in January 2014 with high-grade carcinoma of the head and neck, he underwent extensive surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatment over the next five months. He and his wife Suzanne reside in Connecticut and are profoundly grateful to all the oncology professionals, staff and survivors who treat and support them.
Timid comes the spring, sighing with unease,
Longer days warm the soil another few degrees.
Daffodils arise, renouncing my disease.
Sensing signs of hope, a rose nearby perceives
Like me, it's unprotected, beset by inner thieves.
Begged for intervention, I kneel and roll my sleeves.
Reaching under branches, my hand and glove are torn.
Tiny drops of blood reveal a sharp, tenacious thorn.
Intersecting planes of experience conform.
Pausing in the moment, an introspective one,
I review the basics needing to be done:
Fertilize and prune, re-energize with sun.
Staring down my cancer, I ponder what's ahead.
Fully radiated, trimmed, and chemically re-fed,
Will I savor summer's warmth, escape the winter's dread?