2022, The Year I Became a Poet

Change. Nobody likes it. Which is weird because it’s sorta kinda the basis of all life. And life is…good.

As I see it, generally pressures come and pressures go. Other times, they grow and fester and can’t be ignored and it is we who must adapt to them. That’s the way it is with evolution, with our personal lives, and sometimes, our artistic lives.

The pandemic was a pressure and an accelerator on all of us (thus fulfilling its biological (and perhaps socio-cultural) function). And boy did I feel it! For me, it renewed and revivified my personal faith (in science and secularism). Simply seeing the power of vaccines and knowing their PROVEN ability in saving tens of millions of lives had something to do with that! So did walking the walk: getting the vaccines myself (two initial shots and two boosters so far!), encouraging others to do so, masking in public, and (for a time and still sometimes) social distancing. I can personally testify that those methods worked for me and my family. All these medicines and tools make me extraordinarily grateful to past and contemporary medical researchers for making these life-saving advances accessible to so many people…

But I digress. These pandemic pressures also forced me to change as an ARTIST. Sitting up late at night in the backyard and looking at the stars stirred something within me. It got me thinking and pondering. At first, I started to log what I saw in the stars, just the data. But soon, that changed to writing little snippets, stray thoughts about what I saw in the binoculars and my telescope. My feelings on seeing stars, nebulae, galaxies and my favorite, globular clusters, whose photons had traveled tens of thousands or even tens of millions of years to reach my eyeball in the backyard–were one of the highlights of the pandemic for me.

These snippets became haiku. And these haiku were strung together into a narrative poem, “The King Becomes a Star.” I sent it along to Strange Horizons and they accepted it! I couldn’t believe it! That poem came out in February this year (2022). All the while, I kept writing little snippets of poems, polishing them and sending them off to friends for critiques. Finally, I stared sending them out to other magazines…

Then in June of this year, Star*Line Magazine accepted my poem “The Darkness” which should be out later this year.

And now…Great news! A third poem of mine has been accepted for publication. This time, it’s one called “In the Dose.” It’s about the benefits (as opposed to more typical detrimental effects) of radiation on living things…IF the dose is right. That is, specifically, about how the background radiation environment on Earth has helped propel evolution

All of which brings us full circle. Back to Darwin. Back to evolution. Back to science and poetry. And the fusion of the two. A place where science is poetry and poetry is science, indivisible and inseparable… Anyway, the poem should be out in September. Watch this space for details on the publisher and availability.

In the end, it makes me realize I’ve changed too. Like Viktor Frankl (supposedly) said:

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”

The pandemic made me realize that I’m not only a writer who sometimes writes poetry. But now—maybe, just maybe—I am a poet who writes poems.

How’s that for change?

See you soon…


1 thought on “2022, The Year I Became a Poet

  1. Great to Have aPoet. Pass on Your Poems


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