From that first time writing a poem, over 50 years ago, I have not been able to stop writing poetry. That first poem, about the Vietnam war, was influenced by the folk music songs of the 60's. Other poetic influences over the intervening decades have been Robert Frost, Robinson Jeffers, Gary Snyder, Lew Welch, T'ao Ch'ien, Basho, Ryokan, Su Tung-P'o and countless others.
19 years after writing that first poem in 1966, I gave my first reading of a poem in public. That was not an easy step for one who was never comfortable speaking in front of an audience. I survived that ten-minute long reading (it was a long poem) and have not looked back.
In the last few years I've given well over 400 featured readings throughout the United States, from Maine to Oregon, Minnesota to Louisiana. Libraries, colleges, coffeehouses, literary centers, museums, nature centers, wine festivals, music festival, parks, a retirement center and even a bed and breakfast have been venues for my readings. Many of these locations have invited me back for return engagements. (See my upcoming and recent schedule)
In conjunction with readings, I have facilitated numerous writing workshops for writers of all ages. The workshops are informal, friendly, can be focused on a certain theme or be free-flowing in-the-moment experiences. I like to consider myself an encourager and the workshops are reflective of that attitude.