Balls of Light in the Darkness

Hi Team! I am watching the snow fall again today and thankfully my tumor marker is doing the same – it was at 26 yesterday!  I  know it has been a few weeks since the last post.  I do get tested usually every week and generally post the results to the medical info page by Tuesday morning so you can always check there for the latest.  My doc is happy with the state of affairs and the direction -so much so that he is setting up an appointment with the surgeon, Dr. Sheinfeld (il maestro di RPLND) for Jan 2 for pre-op meeting!  Who gets psyched about major abdominal surgery? I do.  Because it means I am one step closer to full recovery and that harder paths have been avoided.

One of our loving friends, Nicky, has put together a team to raise $10,000 for research at Sloan-Kettering in rare cancers by taking part in Cycle for Survival on March 1 at the Equinox on 44th Street.   My doctor said yesterday we would be able to earmark the funds for testicular cancer so it doesn’t get any more direct than that.  Nicky has aptly named the team “A Party of Jays” so please join the party and help us by donating (100% tax deductible) or getting in touch if you want to ride!  more info and donation form here

The festivities this time of year are all rooted in celebrating the winter solstice and the return of the light.  In the preceding eras that lacked many life-sustaining features we take for granted such as fridges, supermarkets, central heating, tomatoes from Chile, etc; it was an especially big deal.  It meant that warmer days were coming when food could be more easily gathered and you could stop worrying about how to not freeze to death.  It meant that your lease on life could be renewed.  And that’s how I feel.  I feel clear, strong, ready for whatever challenges remain, grateful for where I am today, and excited about what the months and years ahead may hold.

a few things I wanted to put under your proverbial tree:

1) a recent poem


standing in the plowed road
moving arms and breath
parroting forms given
by that smiling master
on twenty-third street

i sing operatic healing sounds
wrangling ropes of chi
as well as this white boy can

i imagine a stranger
driving up and wondering
how i had lost my mind

for now my companions are
bohemian waxwings,
dark-eyed juncos,
golden-crowned kinglets

the ones who stayed behind
in this cold

i close my eyes and
see a wash of hope,
a small tide of focus,
ancient pattern moving light
into the shadow until
all of my errant cells
have let go their foolish growth
leaving us birds to
flap our wings in the
snowy hush alone

2) this made me laugh.  and cry  (TISSUE ALERT).

3) this just made me laugh: Brazil has a mascot to raise awareness for testicular cancer who goes by the name of Senhor Testiculo.  Check him out here.  Apparently Mr. Testiculo is great with kids.  While perhaps not the exact tactic I would have taken,  I do admire the humor and the attempt to shake up the taboo.  He certainly has my attention.


  1. Susan Gould says:

    So glad to hear the good news! Thank you for continuing to share your journey with us. You are inspiring. Sending you all our love everyday.

  2. “And that’s how I feel. I feel clear, strong, ready for whatever challenges remain, grateful for where I am today, and excited about what the months and years ahead may hold.”

    well stated and amen!

  3. I am loving really loving your poems.
    Sending you much love and Christmas hope across the waves x

  4. loved the poem. the last three paragraphs are amazeballs. merry christmas to you, KR and sophie. sending a snail mail package your way.

  5. John swain says:

    Hello Jay,

    Very happy to get your latest news and continue to be inspired by your extraordinary messages of optimism, humor and love. Your poetry is a Christmas present – thank you.

    I know music is important to you so I hesitate to make this suggestion but I find that when I have time on my hands and some good brain activity available listening to Wagner and especially the Ring Cycle is extraordinary. I came to Wagner fairly late after being an opera fan for decades, and am blown away by the depth of musical innovation and what feels like one on one communication in the orchestral music. My other standby is the Beethoven string quartets and a lot of Schubert’s chamber music.

    Betty and I think of you and talk about you often and are in your corner.

    Merry Christmas and a particularly excellent New Year to you and KR

    Very glad to hear the news of your Mom’s op


    Sent from my iPad

  6. Much love to you and Katie Rose. We think of you so much. Since you are a yogi, you’ll understand: your face comes to me often during my practice. So much light and love being sent from everywhere. You are loved by so many. T

  7. Nicky & Rich says:

    You guys are our heroes. Yay! Enjoy Costa Rica and we’ll see you (getting better and better) when you return.
    Love & light always,
    N & R

  8. reeve schley says:

    Jay super psyched you are doing well. Thanks for all the effort and time you have put into the blog.

  9. kimball Knutson says:

    Love the poems Jay! Have a lovely Christmas with the darling KR and all of your friends and family.
    xoxoxo, Kimmy

  10. Aline Haynes says:

    Hi Jay,

    You’re amazing!! Maybe not as humorous as “Mr. Ball’s” but quite a poet. Maybe you’ve discovered a new career path.

    I’ve thought about you so many times and just wanted to say a quick hello and to wish you and Katy Rose a beautiful Christmas and a New Year filled with good health and joy, joy, joy!!!! Bill and I are both saying our prayers for you daily and we think and mention you quite often. I’ve kept up with you through your wonderful blogs and think your spirit and your Katy Rose are so powerfully good that surely you will be back to your usual, healthy person one of these days in the not too distant future. You’ve definitely been an inspiration to me as to how one handles such an unexpected illness. Jay, as I’ve heard so many say – “if anyone can beat this, it’s you!!” You have such a great attitude and such fabulous support from your dear Katy Rose, family and ALL your friends. I’ve heard from your mother how Katy Rose has had to schedule people in that so many, many people want to visit.

    Sending much love and all good wishes for a warm and cozy Christmas and a great success soon in the New Year,

    Aline Haynes


  11. patty giesecke says:

    The statistics are a lovely Christmas present. Carry on fearless warrior!
    Love from the Giesecke’s

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