Paul Hartal


Absurd Breast Cancer Prevention - Poem by Paul Hartal

“Surgical removal of the breasts before any sign
of cancer is one way to significantly lower the risk.”
Journal of Clinical Oncology, March 15,2005

'Changing Your Lifestyle Can Change Your Genes...
genes are not your destiny', Dean Ornish, M.D.,
Newsweek, June 17,2008


She is scared to death, so what is the answer?
Tell me doctor, please, advise her while she is healthy,
For she is statistically at a high risk of becoming ill
And afraid to contract the dreadful breast cancer.

Cut her healthy breasts, remove all hale tissue,
The good surgeon tells her, with assurance insists
That the operation solves the problem, reduces the risk
To zero, and so cancer is no longer the issue.

But the injudicious medical counsel fails to inform her
That as a life style scourge cancer can be prevented better,
And anyway, removing the breasts does not really matter
Because the disease may strike the body elsewhere.

This brutal cure is absurd, like the act of one afraid of steps,
A person at a high risk of fractures who avoids walking
And in a Kafkaesque way opts to amputate the limbs
In order to prevent the breaking of the legs.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Poem Edited: Monday, December 26, 2011


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