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Grant Winner: AshleyCae Lee

We'd like to introduce one of this year's Maureen Clarke Grant winners: AshleyCae, age 27, from Flint, Michigan, who is diagnosed with breast cancer and Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. She wrote: I am a poet and activist. I use poetry to help tell my story and inspire people. Cancer has slowed me down but hasn't stopped me at all. I continue to advocate for myself and other patients if they need help.

So I remember this day vividly. I was full of anger and resentment. I felt as if the world was picking on me. Everything rubbed me wrong. I shut myself in my room just crying.


I hear the sound of my little nephew's voice, he was 3 at time. He asking for crackers and juice. I'm sitting in my room wishing I had it as easy as he did. Lol. He decided to come in my room, but unable to open the door he looks under the small crack. He says aunty are you hungry? I tell him no. He decides to slide Oreos under my door. I kind of giggle while still trying to hold on to being mad.


I unlock my door to take my mad walk to the bathroom and go back into my room sorting thru all my bras I need to throw out as they hurt too much to wear. He comes into my room climbs on my bed putting my bra on his head and saying he's a super hero.


I laughed so hard I could of busted a surgical incision. Time and time again he makes me smile and laugh with his child like wonder and antics. He doesn't quite understand cancer but he does understand humor.

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