Cancer and Poetry Converge as a Caregiver Shares Hope in a New Book, Yellow: chemopoetry from a caretaker’s journey, by Chad Michael Rimmer

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For anyone who has wrestled with cancer, or cares for loved ones who have, this collection of poetry offers solidarity and inspiration to contemplate hope and the holiness of everyday life. “I share my poetry in the hope that it helps someone make sense of their journey.”

Her husband turned to poetry to try and make sense of out of life in the midst of the chaos caused by cancer.

The Rimmer family was living and teaching in Senegal, West Africa. But when Natalie was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma their world was turned inside out. Forced to flee their home in search of healing, the world seemed strangely disorienting. Her husband Chad, a Lutheran pastor, theologian and teacher, turned to poetry to try and make sense of out of life in the midst of the chaos caused by cancer.

“Anyone who has intimately cared for a loved one over an extended period of time knows that caring demands a quiet attentiveness to see the significance of simple steps along the journey to healing. Caring is poetic in that the caretaker cultivates a spiritual seeing that tries to feel the needs, emotions, struggle and beauty of life in its fullness that includes deep suffering alongside deep grace. The need to listen deeply to medical personnel, my children, myself and ultimately my wife aligned with my inner need to write poetry. And through that poetic process I began to make sense of my wife’s journey toward healing."

Yellow: chemopoetry from a caretaker's journey is a collection of poetry that invites you to share those creative moments as the family finds joy, love, and hope. In conversation with philosophers, poets, mystics, doctors, birds, holy scriptures and his local ecology, Chad contemplates healing in the face of cancer. Sometimes in sonnets, terza rima, haiku, form or free verse, this book length collection of poetry reveals his pursuit to understand truth, goodness and beauty in the face of fear, pain and the disorienting world of radiation, surgery and chemotherapy. It is, in a phrase, chemopoetry.

These poems were written over the course of one year of cancer treatments at Duke University Hospital. The collection is shared in gratitude for the nurses, chaplains, child-life specialists, doctors, PAs, environmental service employees, therapists, dogs, and staff who care for them and families that live brightly in the midst of the shadow of cancer every day.

For anyone who has wrestled with cancer, or cares for loved ones who have, this collection of poetry offers solidarity and inspiration to contemplate hope and the holiness of everyday life. “I want to share my poetry in the hope that it helps someone make sense of their journey. I share it to honor anyone who is going through cancer, or caring for someone who is.”

Videos of Dr Chad Rimmer reading select poems can be found on facebook.com/Yellowchemopoetry . Request advanced copies at chad.rimmer(at)gmail(dot)com. The book is available on Amazon.com and will make a beautiful Valentine’s Day present.

About Rev Dr Chad Michael Rimmer
If you are looking for Chad, he is probably outside contemplating the wonders of creation and the truth, goodness and beauty of everyday life. Chad Michael Rimmer is a husband, father, theologian, teacher, naturalist, Lutheran pastor, musician and a foodie. Born in Raleigh, North Carolina, in the US, he has worked, lived, and travelled on five continents, and over 35 countries with all their cultural, linguistic, religious, artistic and natural beauty. He has called Denmark, Scotland, France, and Senegal home, but today Chad lives in Geneva, Switzerland with his wife, two boys and their sweet dog Lucy.

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Chad Rimmer
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