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The River Diaries

Wednesday, July 18, 2001

To all my friends,

This will be my final diary entry for this website. All I want to give you is here, all that is important to me: my writing in which the body and history, sexual desire and social struggle share the same bed, the voices of women activists who are fighting the hardest public battles, the faces of women I love and even my dog, links with the Lesbian Herstory Archives and other communal resources, even a way you can speak with each other. I want you to know of two projects about my work: in 2002 Cleis Press will bring out a new edition of A Restricted Country with a new introduction and annotations, and I am now working on an anthology to be called GenderQueer with Riki Anne Wilchins and Clare Howell. Joyce Warshaw has made a film about me that will have its first showing in November at the Lynne Campell Astraea night in New York.

I am telling you all of this because the next part of my life will perhaps be the hardest. This past week I have learned that my breast cancer which I thought would be a simple thing is not. I have the most aggressive kind of cells – “wild” is what they are called and that gives me a queer kind of pleasure – and there is evidence of “vascular invasion.” This is my second major cancer in four years. I am not sure what I will do or what I can take. My partner, Di Otto, is taking a year off from work in Australia to be with me. Everything in me tells me that now I must turn to a smaller world, that I must sort things out in the most personal of ways. So now I take leave – you have my words, my dreams of touch and of change, and I have yours.

Continued after all

© 2001 Joan Nestle

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