I write because I breathe.
I wrote my first poem in elementary school:
I was proud of the long narrow form rising “like a bird” (or descending) on the page. Shortly thereafter, I saved enough money from babysitting jobs, $201.79, to buy a two-tone blue Smith-Corona, Coronamatic, Super 12, electric-typewriter, complete with thick brown plastic case and the current issue of The Writer.
Writing poetry was never a choice. It was and remains a faithful companion. I write because I breathe.
1970s Earth Shoes
and Rod McKuen’s Backpack
Thanks to my father’s “We’re here to see Rod” stage-door high jinx, this picture was taken pre-show, back-stage, at the Walnut Street Theater where Rod McKuen left us guarding his backpack and scarf while he used the restroom. Then he would “come back for an autograph.”I was star-struck. McKuen was my first poetry “instructor” and idol. We both had a love-affair-connection with Ocean. His poetry gave me permission to write love poems to her. His poetry gave me permission to write about breasts and bellies as well.
My list of “Poets & Poetry I Love” has grown and I continue to write. Yes, about Ocean and breasts and bellies, and, often, I write about other things too.