Back to the Future

I enjoyed two full months of recovery from the latest attempt to control my cancer, multiple myeloma. At first, that drug worked well. The harsh side effects, however, made me question whether it was worthwhile. Soon, its effectiveness waned. The setback left me wondering about my future. So, I took a break to reassess things. … More Back to the Future

The Final Four

Recently, the nursing staff at the infusatorium, where I receive treatment, took it upon themselves to start a cancer support group. At the first meeting I attended, some expressed shock at disappointing prognoses. As a hardy veteran of the cancer wars, I understand how the initial diagnosis upsets the routines of living we carefully construct. To discern … More The Final Four


In the mid-summer of 2015 when all of Oregon seemed to be on fire, the view from our home of the mountains was to the north in Washington, beyond the border of the rolling Columbia River. There, above the peaks of the barren foothills, a plume of smoke from a wildfire in the Indian Heaven … More Wildfire

Spring Reverie

“While we speak, envious time will have already fled: … ” Horace When my wife and I moved into Hood River last April, a canopy of white blossoms greeted us from a flowering cherry in our yard. Once again, demitasse sized blooms decorate the tree. The petals detach and fall, shards of velvet that land undamaged on the … More Spring Reverie

The Infusatorium

I arrive at 8 am. Sam works admitting: name, birthdate, reason for being here. The data links me to my doctor’s orders. I receive a barcoded arm band. The infusatorium opens at 8:30. I wait, reading Web/MD magazine. I wonder if I could write for them. “No,” I decide, “I’m irrelevant. I’m no Brokaw or … More The Infusatorium

Black and White

Recently, I changed doctors. The Hood River community does not have an oncology practice. Consequently, they contract with established physicians from Portland, OR. Dr. A is our new visiting hematologist. She attends to all local patients with cancer and, when necessary, manages their chemotherapy in our hospital’s small infusion ward. Fortunately for me, her training … More Black and White