About Me

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As the poet in residence at EcoHealth Alliance, my verse finds inspiration these days in topics of ecology and public health. I am reappraising the sonnets of E. A. Robinson for my dissertation at LMU Munich's Amerika-Institut, where I tutor composition and edit a flyer, Poetry Tuesday. I also teach at MHVS and Amerikahaus.



von Rainer Maria Rilke

Herr, es ist Zeit. Der Sommer war sehr groß.
Leg deinen Schatten auf die Sonnenuhren,
und auf den Fluren lass die Winde los.

Befiehl den letzten Früchten, voll zu sein;
gib ihnen noch zwei südlichere Tage,
dränge sie zur Vollendung hin, und jage
die letzte Süße in den schweren Wein.

Wer jetzt kein Haus hat, baut sich keines mehr.
Wer jetzt allein ist, wird es lange bleiben,
wird wachen, lesen, lange Briefe schreiben
und wird in den Alleen hin und her
unruhig wandern, wenn die Blätter treiben. 

The Gift Outright

by Robert Frost

The land was ours before we were the land’s.
She was our land more than a hundred years
Before we were her people. She was ours
In Massachusetts, in Virginia,
But we were England’s, still colonials,
Possessing what we still were unpossessed by,
Possessed by what we now no more possessed.
Something we were withholding made us weak
Until we found out that it was ourselves
We were withholding from our land of living,
And forthwith found salvation in surrender.
Such as we were we gave ourselves outright
(The deed of gift was many deeds of war)
To the land vaguely realizing westward,
But still unstoried, artless, unenhanced,
Such as she was, such as she would become.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.


This Dust Was Once the Man

by Walt Whitman

This dust was once the Man,
Gentle, plain, just and resolute, under whose cautious hand,
Against the foulest crime in history known in any land or age,
Was saved the Union of These States.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.



by William Shakespeare

   That time of yeeare thou maiſt in me behold, 
When yellow leaues,or none,or fewe doe hange 
Vpon thoſe boughes which ſhake againſt the could, 
Bare rn'wd quiers,where late the ſweet birds ſang. 
In me thou ſeeſt the twi-light of ſuch day, 
As after Sun-ſet fadeth in the Weſt, 
Which by and by blacke night doth take away, 
Deaths ſecond ſelfe that ſeals vp all in reſt. 
In me thou ſeeſt the glowing of ſuch fire, 
That on the aſhes of his youth doth lye, 
As the death bed,whereon it muſt expire, 
Conſum'd with that which it was nurriſht by. 
   This thou perceu'ſt,which makes thy loue more ſtrong, 
   To loue that well,which thou muſt leaue ere long.



by John Keats

How many bards gild the lapses of time!
  A few of them have ever been the food
  Of my delighted fancy,—I could brood
Over their beauties, earthly, or sublime:
And often, when I sit me down to rhyme,        
  These will in throngs before my mind intrude:
  But no confusion, no disturbance rude
Do they occasion; ’tis a pleasing chime.
So the unnumber’d sounds that evening store;
  The songs of birds—the whisp’ring of the leaves—        
The voice of waters—the great bell that heaves
  With solemn sound,—and thousand others more,
That distance of recognizance bereaves,
  Make pleasing music, and not wild uproar.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.


The Cross of Snow

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

In the long, sleepless watches of the night, 
   A gentle face—the face of one long dead— 
   Looks at me from the wall, where round its head 
   The night-lamp casts a halo of pale light. 
Here in this room she died; and soul more white 
   Never through martyrdom of fire was led 
   To its repose; nor can in books be read 
   The legend of a life more benedight. 
There is a mountain in the distant West 
   That, sun-defying, in its deep ravines 
   Displays a cross of snow upon its side. 
Such is the cross I wear upon my breast 
   These eighteen years, through all the changing scenes 
   And seasons, changeless since the day she died. 


On Seeing the Elgin Marbles

by John Keats

My spirit is too weak—mortality 
   Weighs heavily on me like unwilling sleep, 
   And each imagined pinnacle and steep 
Of godlike hardship tells me I must die 
Like a sick eagle looking at the sky. 
   Yet ’tis a gentle luxury to weep 
   That I have not the cloudy winds to keep 
Fresh for the opening of the morning’s eye. 
Such dim-conceived glories of the brain 
   Bring round the heart an undescribable feud; 
So do these wonders a most dizzy pain, 
   That mingles Grecian grandeur with the rude 
Wasting of old time—with a billowy main— 
   A sun—a shadow of a magnitude. 

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.