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Monthly Archives: December 2014

A New Year

Here are Jack Kerouac with a cat and Brando kissing a feline, just because I like the photos.

 

Kerouac with cat Brando kissing cat

 

I think this poem is always fresh and relevant as a new year begins.

Tennyson’s “In Memoriam” (excerpt)

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,

The flying cloud, the frosty light:

The year is dying in the night;

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

Ring, happy bells, across the snow:

The year is going, let him go;

Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,

The faithless coldness of the times;

Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes

But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;

Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;

Ring out the thousand wars of old,

Ring in the thousand years of peace.

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2014 draws to a close

ballet in snow, Portland christmas tree in snow

This first photo is from a stunning series done by Jonathan Reece of Portland Ballet dancers in their city.
2014 has been a tough year for my family and for many I know. The support of my friends and family is invaluable to me, but especially this year. I’d like to thank some of the people who help make Maine such a vibrant place for poetry and the arts of all kinds: Andy Curran, Sally McKibben, Anna Wrobel and Jim Donnelly, Ted and Ruth Bookey, Wes McNair, Josh Bodwell, Marcia Brown, Dennis Camire, Bruce Spang, Duff Plunkett….this is just a partial list, of course. I could go on and on. And let’s not forget to thank the indefatigable Bob Keyes, who does such a terrific job reporting on the arts in Maine in the Sunday Telegram.
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Festivus or any holiday you celebrate. May 2015 bring us more peace, less stress, more joy and endless piles of books!

As we hurtle toward the winter solstice…why poets excel at business

Here is a wonderful Rockwell Kent painting, and a photo of my Maine coon cat George contemplating the snow outside.

Recently Portland Poet Laureate Marcia Brown sent out a link to an article by John Coleman in, of all places, the Harvard Business Review, in the issue of 10/27/2012.  It addresses the question of why poets make good business employees and managers.  Coleman asserts that poets can, among other skills, simplify the complex, develop empathy, and “infuse life with beauty and meaning.”  I love this idea and agree with it.  I’m one of those not-so-rare people with  “mixed” academic training in lit, writing and law (there are far more lawyer/poets around than you might think). I worked in the corporate world for about 20 years and found it rewarding in many ways.  I like to think that one can balance practicality with creativity, and that when you cross into another realm, one can be enriched by it, because there is much to learn.

Kent painting snowIMG_0529