Stealing Her Cells


John Hopkins took her cells

People got rich off of ‘em

The world’s most famous vulture,

Almost constantly feeding on human specimens,

Scraping cells from the cervix

Took any cells he could get his hands on.

Determined to grow the first immortal cells

No one had told [her]

They were growing with mythological intensity

They’d doubled

Doubled again

Spreading like crabgrass

[She] knew nothing about her cells growing in a laboratory

things weren’t all good

illegal, immoral, and deplorable

that was just the beginning

cells change

[her] cells might hold the key to human life extension

it was an epiphany

a massive operation that would grow to produce trillions of cells a week

[these] men [were] trying to be gods

her family had no idea her cells were alive,

alive and healthy

“The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” by Rebecca Skloot (9, 28, 30, 33, 40-2, 47, 93, 96, 98, 109, 133, 143, 215, 217)


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