Palliative Care in Other Words

"He that dies pays all debts."--William Shakespeare

Outcomes for this project can be imagined in two ways--emotional and physical.

1.     The emotional outcomes of this project--that is, those outcomes that are real but which will not be physically or immediately visible--can be summarized as encompassing:
a. Valuing a patient's output, regardless of traditional or group measures.
b. Recognizing what deserves to be recognized according to the patient-writer, whether it makes immediate narrative sense or not.
c. Creating a sense of service for those who would derive comfort from that feeling.
d. Finding ways to share these outcomes, which is vital to this project.
e. Creativity--acts of the imagination--must not be subsumed by resignation.
f. If there is reason to share--often this means involving family--then there is reason to do all this.

2.     The physical outcomes of this project--that is, the results of the emotional outcomes--might be summarized as encompassing:
a. Imaginative writing, each writer following her own gently guided directions.  This may take the form of poems, a book, a broadside, a webcast, a reading, or any number of other possibilities.
b. Reproduction of this writing in a form fit for presentation and sharing.  Something must be given back to the patient and to the family--family, after all, will be who survives and in this way will carry the baton of this work.
c. Creation of a Lasting Meditation Garden, with writing from this project etched in granite stones in a healing garden setting.  This garden would be modeled on the Words Over Water project at Tempe Town Lake, using simple, memorable lines of text written in stone, words forged by people who have been in this place and faced these same things. 

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