Tapestry Of Love: A Brother, A Sister, And An Odyssey Through Cancer
Healing is a state of burdenlessness. Tapestry Of Love is a memoir of a journey through cancer by a brother and sister. Michael, dealt with cancer twice in his life and died young, at the age of 34. This is a first person narrative,in both of our voices, describing our experiences in coping with the illness, with life and death, with grief and healing. More
Healing is a state of burdenlessness.
My brother, Michael, wrote this line for Tapestry Of Love: A Brother, A Sister And An Odyssey Through Cancer, after being diagnosed with a recurrence of bone cancer in April, 1992. He had been in remission for twelve years. He died four months later at 34.
Michael and I immediately began to write our story together, a matter of life and death to us. Sharing our pain, focusing this through writing, transformed the raw ache of cancer into a journey of love and letting go. For all the sadness, we found a freedom in compassion, in humor. Humor, as Michael used it, was compassion.
Michael wrote about 10,000 words before he became too ill, in July 1992, to write anymore. All of his writing is in the present tense, speaking to the immediacy with which he lived and died. His chapters are succinct, his limited energy concentrated in powerful prose.
My narrative is the setting for the jewel of Michael's writing. Michael's chronology focuses on his realizations of complete healing while I provide a broader episodic background. I have arranged our writings so that a chapter by Michael is coupled with a chapter by me on a similar theme and time. For example, Michael's "Totentanz"--on how he wants to die--is followed by "The Last Word" in which I cover the final week of his life.
Our dialogue of voices, of a brother and sister, enhance each other as we both face illness, life and death. This appeals both to a reader in Michael's position and to a reader in my position. Or to anyone, really, because we must all face this at some time, in some way, whatever the odyssey may be. Our voices, while unique, are common to many. We are two people who love each other dearly and face a devastating circumstance with all our humanity--love, humor, pain, courage.
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