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Distributed for CavanKerry Press

But I Still Have My Fingerprints

WIth an Introduction by David E. Avigan, Md
Poems centered on survival and perseverance in the face of long-term illness.

Delivered a diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia with a ten percent prognosis for survival, Dr. Dianne Silvestri surrenders her white coat for a hospital gown. Aided by her attentive medical team, family, and friends, she navigates the surreal world of chemotherapy, stem cell transplantation, and subsequent threats from graft-versus-host disease and serious infections of her compromised immune system.

But I Still Have My Fingerprints speaks to the difficulties of “surviving survival.” With a clear eye for irony and analogy and a commitment to curiosity and truth, Silvestri writes through her struggles and victories. She gives us poems with unique perspectives, fresh images, and unquenchable optimism, in her perseverance to redefine life beyond what was lost.

88 pages | 6 x 9


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"Dianne Silvestri, MD, a poet as well as a retired dermatologist, has provided readers with the emotionally moving and artistically creative story of her cancer diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship... Silvestri has accomplished a medical humanities miracle in integrating personal candor, vivid exposition of medical procedures, and distinctive poetic techniques."

Journal of Poetry Therapy

Table of Contents

Dear Doctor
Emergency Phone Call from My Doctor, 11pm
Cosmic Questions
The Night Phlebotomist
Doctor as Patient
For the Patients with Hair Loss
Poem for George
A Bag of Blood
The Hospital Mail
Hospital Housekeeping
Conversation with My Grandson
Seated on My Hospital Bed
Bone Marrow Biopsy

Off Script
Donor Search
Dear Healthy 28-Year-Old Man
Isolation Room, Leukemia Floor
Countdown to a New Birthday
Awaiting Reconstitution
Swallow This
Drug-Induced Tendon Tear
Advance Directives

Time Out
After a Month Away
It Would Be So Nice To Have
Back Home, Day 459
Lying on the Patient History Form
Summer’s Reprieve
Citrus aurantium
Graft vs. Host
The Nurses There
Choosing the Right Pumpkin, Farm Stand, Natick, MA
Appointment at the Oncology Clinic
Feature Film: Drug Study KEP DR78
Darkroom in the Converted Laundry Room
Readmitted: This Time to the Overflow Ward
You May Resume Your Normal Activities
Please Define Longer
A Club for Those of Us Who Almost Died

With Feathers
Wanted: Lust
Flashback on a Sunny Day
Rose Quartz Geode I Found in the Woods
Maintenance Fatigue
Waiting Room Waiting
Retail Therapy
Victory Garden
An End to the Ends
New Life


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