Tell us about your current releases in the anthology.
That’s really hard, I think. I’m mostly happy with the thinking that is involved in the pieces. Language wise, I think the pieces are quite simple. I will be happy if the reader comes away from reading any one of the pieces with a palpable sense of openness, quietness of heart and mind, or delight. Or is that overly ambitious?
Tell us about your future releases.
That would be nice.
What books are you reading now?
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
I think it changes. I love really virtuoso live music, usually jazz. One time I heard Midori play, and I was awestruck by the trueness of her tone. If it’s during the act of writing, then I prefer no music or some junk on one of my Pandora stations, such as my Ben Folds Five station.
I can’t think of any favorite authors or poets, just favorite books and poems.
Spell of the Sensuous by David Abram
Complexity by Mitchell Waldrop
Start where you are by Pema Chodron
American Poetry by Robert Bly
The periodic table by Primo Levi
Bad Dog by Lin Jensen
Favorite TV shows?
I've watched many, many television shows in my lifetime, and I will likely continue to do so, but for the life of me, I can’t think of one show that I think was worth the time to watch.
Lone Star by John Sayles.
Fish story - a Japanese movie you can watch on netflix streaming. Go watch it, please, and then tell me you did.
Shawshank Redemption - isn’t this everyone’s favorite? Or at least every guy’s favorite?
At what point in your life did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
When I was 17, I started wanting to be a writer, but more so enjoyed the posing aspects of it, such as sitting at table with a fake pipe in my mouth. No, I’m kidding. I thought of writing as more an opportunity to express some truths, and I was very earnest about that. Maybe I still am? I can’t tell. I’m not sure at this point that I want to be a writer so much as I feel dissatisfied if I am not engaged in something that pushes me. In other words, I feel happiest when I am engaged and pushing through or against something. Being in an argument against seven to eight smart people is my idea of fun and passion, of feeling alive. So, somehow writing feels like a less abrasive way of going against the grain (but enlivening the spirit).
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually sit down, stare at a screen, and think, “I can’t do this” or “It’s impossible.” Then, if I’m patient, I get a few words, and I feel elated. More often than not, at that point I quit, very pleased with myself for my accomplishments. Other times, I try to push myself until I have about half a page, or even a full page. I’m just as interested in the sheer meaninglessness of the writing process itself - after the fact. But that’s not quite right. It’s more like the dream-like or transient reality to the writing process that I find intriguing. Everything feels so intensely real at the time of writing, and then before long, it’s no more important than any other memory, and in fact, it’s less important than the green of the Japanese Maple outside the window or the sound of the water trickling in my aquarium right now. Much like making love to someone, I think. What can feel so profound and meaningful one moment soon takes its place next to a procession of other memories, and one would expect that these deep and intense memories would hold their psychic charge. Yet, I find that they do not. The seemingly sacred and enlivening quality feels sealed in - out of reach - only to be found anew, elsewhere, but in the fresh moment. Not in the memory of the one-time event.This may be common sense, but something in me is intrigued by this phenomenon. Maybe it’s that I resist it? I can’t tell. I should turn this into a piece, I’m thinking.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you for reading (if you have). I hope that you’ll send me an email or something. It gets lonely out in “published” land.
Check out some other poets from the Spring Poetry Anthology: