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Famous Cancer Poems by Famous Poets

These are examples of famous Cancer poems written by well-known modern and classical poets. PoetrySoup is a great educational poetry resource of famous cancer poems.

These examples illustrate what a famous cancer poem looks like and its form, scheme, or style (where appropriate). The poems may also contain the word 'cancer'.

Don't forget to view our Cancer Poems by members. You can find great cancer poems there too.

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by Sexton, Anne
 What is death, I ask. 
What is life, you ask. 
I give them both my buttocks, 
my two wheels rolling off toward Nirvana. 
They are neat as a wallet,...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 Your daisies have come
on the day of my divorce:
the courtroom a cement box,
a gas chamber for the infectious Jew in me
and a perhaps land, a possibly promised land
for the...Read More
by Marvell, Andrew
 After two sittings, now our Lady State 
To end her picture does the third time wait. 
But ere thou fall'st to work, first, Painter, see 
If't ben't too slight...Read More
by Tebb, Barry
 for Brenda Williams



The dawn cracked with ice, with fire grumbling in the grate,

With ire in the homes we had left, but still somehow

We made a nook in the crooked...Read More
by Hacker, Marilyn
 An unwrapped icon, too potent to touch,
she freed my breasts from the camp Empire dress.
Now one of them's the shadow of a breast
with a lost object's half-life, with as...Read More
by Larkin, Philip
Once i am sure there's nothing going on
I step inside letting the door thud shut.
Another church: matting seats and stone 
and little books; sprawlings of flowers cut
For Sunday brownish now;...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 1.

I am thirty this November.
You are still small, in your fourth year.
We stand watching the yellow leaves go queer,
flapping in the winter rain.
falling flat and washed. And I remember
mostly...Read More
by Whitman, Walt
 1
AS a strong bird on pinions free, 
Joyous, the amplest spaces heavenward cleaving, 
Such be the thought I’d think to-day of thee, America, 
Such be the recitative I’d bring...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 1.
Mother, my Mary Gray,
once resident of Gloucester
and Essex County,
a photostat of your will
arrived in the mail today.
This is the division of money.
I am one third
of your daughters counting my...Read More
by Tebb, Barry
 For Brenda Williams



La lune diminue; divin septembre.

Divine September the moon wanes.

 Pierre Jean Jouve



Themes for poems and the detritus of dreams coalesce:

This is one September I shall not forget.



The...Read More
by Corso, Gregory
 Budger of history Brake of time You Bomb
 Toy of universe Grandest of all snatched sky I cannot hate you
 Do I hate the mischievous thunderbolt the jawbone of...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 They work with herbs
and penicillin
They work with gentleness
and the scalpel.
They dig out the cancer,
close an incision
and say a prayer
to the poverty of the skin.
They are not Gods
though they would...Read More
by Kizer, Carolyn
 For Ann London 

As you described your mastectomy in calm detail
and bared your chest so I might see
the puckered scar,
"They took a hatchet to your breast!" I said. "What...Read More
by Whitman, Walt
 YOU just maturing youth! You male or female! 
Remember the organic compact of These States, 
Remember the pledge of the Old Thirteen thenceforward to the rights, life, liberty,
 equality...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 It's in the heart of the grape
where that smile lies.
It's in the good-bye-bow in the hair
where that smile lies.
It's in the clerical collar of the dress
where that smile lies.
What...Read More
by Betjeman, John
 The last year's leaves are on the beech:
The twigs are black; the cold is dry;
To deeps byond the deepest reach
The Easter bells enlarge the sky.
O ordered metal clatter-clang!
Is yours...Read More
by Matthews, William
 "First, do no harm," the Hippocratic
Oath begins, but before she might enjoy
such balm, the docs had to harm her tumor.
It was large, rare, and so anomalous
in its behavior that...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 A young man is afraid of his demon and puts his hand
over the demon's mouth sometimes...-- D. H. Lawrence

I mentioned my demon to a friend
and the friend swam in...Read More
by Bradstreet, Anne
 Absent upon Public Employment 

My head, my heart, mine eyes, my life, nay more,
My joy, my magazine, of earthly store,
If two be one, as surely thou and I,
How stayest...Read More
by Berman, David
 She woke me up at dawn,
her suitcase like a little brown dog at her heels.

I sat up and looked out the window
at the snow falling in the stand of...Read More
by Thomas, Dylan
 From love's first fever to her plague, from the soft second
And to the hollow minute of the womb,
From the unfolding to the scissored caul,
The time for breast and the...Read More
by Sexton, Anne
 1. DREAMS

I was an ice baby.
I turned to sky blue.
My tears became two glass beads.
My mouth stiffened into a dumb howl.
They say it was a dream
but I remember that...Read More
by Service, Robert William
 "A year to live," the Doctor said;
"There is no cure," and shook his head.
Ah me! I felt as good as dead.
Yet quite resigned to fate was I,
Thinking: "Well, since...Read More
by Hikmet, Nazim
 I was born in 1902
I never once went back to my birthplace
I don't like to turn back
at three I served as a pasha's grandson in Aleppo
at nineteen as a...Read More
by Hopkins, Gerard Manley
 ACT I. SC. I

Enter Teryth from riding, Winefred following.

T. WHAT is it, Gwen, my girl? why do you hover and haunt me? 

W. You came by Caerwys, sir? 
T....Read More
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