“He said, ‘No thank you.’/Life wasn’t going to jilt him now…” Part nervous laughter, part numb disbelief, part where-do-we-go-from-here, these poems try on catchy rejoinders to the “sick joke” of prostate cancer. Ron Wallace writes with wry edginess of how obituaries ought to drop the “heroic struggle” lingo and simply acknowledge “Rolled over. Bailed out.” How the doctors’ recommendation for treatment (“just cut it out”) was what he kept telling his brimming tears. These are poems of tenacity rather than submission, simultaneously laughing and crying and holding on with all you’ve got.
Wallace, R. Now You See It: Poems. Parallel Press, 2005.