Monthly Archives: May 2012

Can a Poem Stop Fracking? Let’s Find Out

Can a poem stop fracking? No, but it can put some fun into the effort to stop this rush to industrialize our rural areas by promising quick fortunes while downplaying the hazards to our underground water sources. Listening to the … Continue reading

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Why Poets Should Write About Dirt

(Several weeks ago, I accepted the challenge of writing a poem about each of the four elements, which made me realize how badly I’ve neglected my education in dirt. About fire I had to plenty to say, ranging from fond … Continue reading

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Americans Who Write in the Spirit of Chinese Wilderness Poetry

At a recent poets’ retreat in the Finger Lakes region, Michael Czarnecki presented me with a long awaited gift, his latest FootHills Publishing release, an anthology of five contemporary poets who write, as the title states, In the Spirit of … Continue reading

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“Death in Yellowstone” by Therese Broderick

You may know of my fondness for bears. At a recent poet’s gathering, Therese Broderick made me smile with this vacation story about her daughter. We first met several years ago when she was part of a poetry circle with … Continue reading

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Larry Carr Wins Indie Book Award

(Larry Carr has just won an Indie Book award for best first novel. My congratulations. Here’s what I had to say about Pancake Hollow Primer: A Hudson Valley Story when it appeared last year.) Over coffee Larry Carr once asked … Continue reading

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John Burroughs: The Anti-Santa Naturalist

(Originally published in the June 11, 1998 Woodstock Times.) By 1912, John Burroughs, a celebrated and opinionated author on the sublime importance of nature for one’s personal character, had noticed the birth of the automobile. And he didn’t like it. … Continue reading

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Why Poets Love Walt Whitman

(In their introduction to an anthology of 100 poems, Visiting Walt: Poems Inspired by the Life & Work of Walt Whitman, the editors, Sheila Coghill and Thom Tammaro, explain his enduring appeal. Here’s an excerpt.) 1865. Leaves of Grass. Has … Continue reading

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Walt Whitman, an American, One of the Roughs, a Kosmos

(In 2003 The Country and Abroad published this appreciation. Though we no have Laura Bush to kick around, we will always have Whitman.) I teach straying from me, yet who can stray from me? I follow you whoever you are … Continue reading

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The Unabomber and the Poet

Fortunately, I don’t suffer from fears of serial killers. They come and they go from the news without my learning their names. But years ago one did fascinate me, that rare case covered by The Nation as well as the … Continue reading

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Hudson Gorge Panorama: Hiking Breakneck Ridge

(Here’s an expanded version of “Hudson Gorge Panorama: Hiking Breakneck Ridge,” the cover story for the July/August 2011 issue of Adirondac, published by the Adirondack Mountain Club.) Twenty years ago, when I lived on East 47th Street in a six … Continue reading

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