True Colors

By Lizzie Parsons

This is a poem by former Camper Lizzie Parsons, who is celebrating her 10th year cancer free. Her whole family has participated in AngelRide from the very start, well before anyone imagined cancer arriving into their lives.

liz-parsons.jpgWhen I was diagnosed with cancer,

The bottom fell out of my world.
I stared out of the window at the grey March day
And cried.
And cried.
And cried.

Cancer turns you grey inside.
Grey and black and linoleum green—
A storm of everything and nothing at once.
An endless tempest of hospital rooms and heartbreak.


There is a hidden place where you find the colors again.
A secret place where
The red and blue and purple and yellow and green live
And they get under your skin,
Wrap their threads around your heart and lungs,
And slowly—gently—
Start the kaleidoscope turning.

I know a spell to cure heartbreak.
Take one hole, one wall,
And hundreds of angels
Dressed in rainbows.

When I was recovering from cancer,
I found the place where the pieces
Of my world had landed. I sat in the grass
And put them back together again.
I looked up at the blue August sky
And laughed.
And laughed.
And loved.