Texas Children’s Cancer Center is full of young authors. I work with them every week through WITS and always leave inspired.  The children in outpatient treatment come in to the clinic regularly, so I often get to build a relationship with them. When we are first getting to know each other, many children choose safe, familiar writing topics.  They talk about puppy dogs and basketball and trips to the beach.  Their words conjure up “normal” lives, which they want to return to as soon as possible.

As time goes on, some children find power in writing more directly about their illnesses—how it feels to be told you have cancer or what happens when kids tease you at school or how you deal with the effects of chemo.  Opening up about their sickness takes an incredible amount of courage.Alice Hoffman

Alice Hoffman, a teenager who is dealing with a recent relapse in her cancer, wrote this song several years ago when she learned that she was cancer-free.  It is an A-Z list poem that captures her will to survive.  Please join us in sending healing thoughts and love to Alice Hoffman, a longtime participant in WITS.  Her song was mixed and recorded by Purple Songs Can Fly, another wonderful project at Texas Children’s Cancer Center.

posted by Marcia Chamberlain, Writers in the Schools

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Here I Go by Alice Hoffman

A is for Atavan
B is for Bactrim
C is for Codeine
D is for Dilauden

E is for Excedrin
F is for Fluoxodine
G is for Groggy
H is Hydrocodone

Cancer treatment for two years
Radiation, Chemo
Difficult by here I am
I made it, here I go

I is for Iodine
J is for Jittery
K is for Kitral
L is for Loratab

M is for Marinol
N is for Nexium
O is for “Oh My Gosh”
P is for Previcid

Cancer treatment for two years
Radiation, Chemo
Difficult by here I am
I made it, here I go

Q is for Queezy
R is for Really Long
S is for Stomache Ache
T is for Tremodol

U is for Underweight
V is for Verconizol
W is for Weepy
X is for X-Ray

Cancer treatment for two years
Radiation, Chemo
Difficult by here I am
I made it, here I go

Y is for YoYo moods
Z is for Zofran
Mac & Cheese & drinking Boost
Part of the Med Plan

Cancer treatment for two years
Radiation, Chemo
Difficult by here I am
I made it
Here I go
Here I go…here I go…
here I go….

by Alice Hoffman

[Photo of Alice was taken by Yvonne Feece at the WITS Young Writers Reading in May 2008 at The Menil Collection. The WITS program at Texas Children’s is funded by the Periwinkle Foundation.]

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