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A WORD FOR SURVIVAL
(Dedicated to William Hoyt Jr.)

by Ric Masten

The man who coined the word
Had a terminal disease
A realist who knew that language
Strengthens, heals and frees
Fear  the silent assassin 
Will bring you to your knees
While faith can pull Excalibur
From stubborn stones with ease

The outcome of any illness
Is never absolute
No matter what the odds are
The end is always moot
It's only in uncertainty
That true hope can be found
And you can bet a sure thing
Will always let you down

He fought the "Big C" monster
With spunk an attitude
Another cock-eyed optimist
You should not conclude
So like the fallen colors
I've taken up his word
I'll shout it from the hill tops
Till the echo can be heard 

He was no Pollyanna
His word no platitude
To things considered saccharine
He was abrupt and rude
In the present day vernacular
He was a righteous dude
Let's hear it for the man
Who coined the word
Spiritude!

This poem originally appeared in Ric's book, Words & One-Liners Take 2.

Since February 14, 1999, poet/philosopher RIC MASTEN has been keeping an ongoing account of his battle with Incurable Advanced Metastatic Prostate Cancer from diagnosis to the "Latest Update." He keeps this unique digest in poetry, musings and medical tidbits. Updating as the war goes on. He welcomes calls and correspondence from fellow cancer fighters. Visit his website at: http://www.ric-masten.net/Prostate.Series.html