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redefining beauty

Redefining Beauty Cover

Redefining Beauty
is a unique poetry collection written during karla k. morton's diagnosis, treatment and survival of breast cancer. In a series of passionate and powerful poems, accompanied by photographer Walter Eagleton's black and white images, Redefining Beauty offers readers hope and comfort through its intimate candor, good-humored defiance and unfiltered honesty.


A lifelong poet, as well as a wife and mother of two, Morton was diagnosed with breast cancer in May, 2008. In search of information to help her fight the disease, Morton turned to books. She found facts and statistics. She found self-help books.

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"But I needed more," she says. "I needed some grit, a leather strap between my teeth. And when I couldn't find what I needed, I simply wrote my way through it."


Morton wrote her way through diagnosis, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation treatments and the PET scan that showed her to be cancer-free. She wrote her way through the loss of her hair, bone-crushing pain, insensitive sentiments, bald fashion statements and a fierce determination to live.


karla k. morton has been selected as
the winner in the Women's Issues category of
for her poetry collection Redefining Beauty
Click here to read press release.




"We have never seen a book like this for those going through cancer or those with loved ones in the fight. The poems are powerful, playful and genuine. Anyone who knows Karla will immediately recognize her outgoing personality shining through the words, even in the darkest poems; those who don't know her will sense that 'survivor' is not strong enough to describe her. Try 'warrior' instead."

Scott Wiggerman
Lead editor for Dos Gatos Press


"Imbuing her poems with the intimacy, candor, and unfiltered emotional honesty of a diary, Morton clasps her reader's hand and walks her through all five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance."

  Larry Thomas
2008 Texas State Poet Laureate


“Morton’s Redefining Beauty presents a fresh perspective on cancer. In effect, it is a redefining of more than just what is beautiful concerning our bodies, relationships, and poetry; it’s a redefining of cancer in those spaces as well. Her ability to combine beauty and ugliness, sickness and sweetness, and humor and fright makes her collection an intriguing and entertaining one.”

  Laura E. Decker
Texas Books in Review


"Karla K. Morton is perseverance personified."

Dallas Morning News


"Redefining Beauty declares a universal manifesto for the rage to live."

Michael Price
Arts editor for the Fort Worth Business Press

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Redefining Beauty can be ordered online
directly from the publisher or at
and at bookstores across Texas.

Eagleton Photography
a special thank you to Eagleton Photography for donating
the photos of Karla in Redefining Beauty










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