27 October 2021

Episode 139: Untitled NYC Poem

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Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

09 October 2021

Episode 138 - Always look up when opening a window - 10921 12.52 PM

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DO GOOD: Donate to Social Causes:

https://www.lefthandrob.net/p/social-racial-justice-charities.html



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

23 September 2021

Episode 137 - Something

Direct Cash Contribution: Support this podcast by buying me a ko-fi:

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Poetry Books: Read along with the podcast, get your own copy of the poems (also another great way to support the podcast):

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08VW4TXV6

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https://www.lefthandrob.net/p/social-racial-justice-charities.html

This week, it's "Something." There wasn't an episode last week because I just wasn't feeling it. But hey, I'm back.

The rest: like, share, rate, engage



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

11 September 2021

Episode 136: 11

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Rob's Blog: Donate to Social / Racial Justice Charities (lefthandrob.net)

For whatever reason, I did not read this poem at the week of the anniversary of 9/11. I don't remember why. But for you, this year, on the 20th anniversary, is "11."



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

03 September 2021

Episode 135: September's Rent

Support this podcast by buying me a ko-fi:

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Read along with the podcast, get your own copy of the poems (also another great way to support the podcast):

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Donate to Social Causes:

Rob's Blog: Donate to Social / Racial Justice Charities (lefthandrob.net)

It's not Fall yet, but as of this recording it IS September, so I'm going back into "Stand Right, Walk Left" for this week's piece, "September's Rent." It evokes a feeling from slightly later in the year here in the Northern parts of North America, but hey, listen now and then listen to this episode again while you're out among the changing leaves. Plus, you can tell your friends about the podcast in the interim.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

28 August 2021

Episode 134 - Focus

I made the switch from Audacity to Garageband to record this week's episode ,and there's a little reverb in there I didn't catch until I was doing a final QA check on the mp3 file. So, for you dear listener, enjoy this week's episode as if it were coming to you from a 1970's recording studio, because damn they loved reverb back then!

This week from Regret & Opportunity is "Focus," a brief work about the transient nature of our existence.

Visit https://lefthandrob.net for more episodes, essays, and links to Social Justice Causes.

Visit https://www.amazon.com/author/murrayrobertc for my full catalog of books, including all 3 poetry books. They make wonderful gitfts - the recipient will think you're quite erudite, giving poetry. Priced to move, Priced to Love, Priced so that Amazon gets their cut I can still afford to run this podcast. Help me keep making these for you.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

23 August 2021

Tom T. Hall: A Personal Remembrance

Legendary Country Music songwriter and performer Tom T. Hall passed away at the age of 85 on August 20, 2021. This is my remembrance of a man whom I never met, saw in concert once at a fire company carnival, but has always felt like a distant uncle to me – as much as it is a remembrance of a man I knew most of my life, my father. 

The first time I heard Tom T. Hall's music … I can't remember because it's always been there. The music your parents - or whomever raised you - listened to is as much a part of you as the crazy brightly colored shag-carpet remnant that lined the floor of the room where you first heard that music. For me that music was on the records my father played and sang along to, the turntable propped up on speaker cabinets he had built. 
There were plenty of performers of dad's era represented: Simon & Garfunkel, Peter & Gordon, The Chairman of the Board himself, even a little Roy Clark pickin' n grinnin' when I was young enough to still want to spend a Friday night with the old man. But the featured performer on for each of these nights was Tom T. himself. Most folks know Tom T. Hall from his penning of "Harper Valley PTA," or "I Love." Maybe you're familiar with "I Like Beer" (see below). Even though it was his most famous song, "Harper Valley" wasn't on the rotation for our weekly record concerts. 
 Remembering it now, it's likely my father was unwinding from a long week's work, adding his own rich baritone as he joined in the singing while spending some time with his boy, As often as not I remember poking at his desk calculator (If you punch in a number and hit the square root button enough times, it always resolves to 1!) or using up his scratch pads for I don’t remember what nonsense. I have a lot of memories from the almost 40 years I shared with my father, and these will always be some of the fondest. 
I like to think my father was also using the medium of those songs as life lessons. Rather than sitting me down, wise to the fact that kids rarely listen to what their parents try to tell them, he instead gave the floor to The Storyteller and let his catchy melodies and insightful lyrics impart an ethos. These lessons might not be directly applicable when you're 7, but nearly 40 years later, they apply. 
Stay with me as I remember some songs: 

  • From "A Week in a Country Jail" I learned to be wary of speeding and the potential caprice of local law enforcement - the former a lesson I'll admit it took me much longer and several hundred dollars more than it could have; the latter lesson is not one I, as a white man, need worry about beyond the possibility of maybe spending a few days in jail, as per the song. 
  • "The Ballad of 40 Dollars" and “Who’s Gonna Feed Them Hogs?” teach us that there's always a job to be done, even when those for whom you're doing the work are (literally) beyond their ability to repay you. 
  • "Salute to a Switchblade" is a 3-minute master class in international relations, post-WWII Army life, and what can go wrong when talking to a pretty woman in a bar - throw in an additional lesson on the evils of overindulgence in drink. 
  • In Counterpoint to "Salute", there's "I Like Beer" and "The Bar with No Beer," the former a fun tune about being honest with yourself, the latter a comic lament for those who go without. 
  • "Me and Jesus" taught me that my Faith is Mine, and no one else's business. We got our own thing goin'. 
  • "I Love" and "I Care" are two of the purest songs ever to exist and just thinking about them makes me well up because the human heart was never meant to hold this much love at one time. 
  • "Faster Horses" and "Hat Full of Feathers" show a young person the dangers and ridiculousness of braggadocio from differing perspectives. 
  • "That's How I Got to Memphis", "I Miss a Lot of Trains", and "The Year That Clayton Delaney Died" speak of heartache, grief, and recovery; they give us the tools we need to move on when "I Love" and "I Care" just aren't enough. 

 I could go on like this through the bulk of his discography, but I'll wrap up this reminiscence with "Sneaky Snake." There's no lesson here beyond maybe if you too want to get your young one into music (specifically Tom T. Hall, I guess?), play "Sneaky Snake" for them. This song was the funniest GD song to me when I was a little kid. It's fitting that it was written from an experience Mr. Hall had on his own property/refuge at Fox Hollow; because, as much as Tom T. Hall's music was full of lessons for me then and now, it has been and will always be a refuge for me as much as a memory of time well spent with my father - and that ridiculous (-ly awesome) yellow and orange shag carpet in his office.

21 August 2021

Episode 133: My new home

With all the new homes under construction in my development, it's hard not to look back through my poetry books and pluck out this little gem to share with you all this week. It's a silly little ode written when I moved into a house I'd bought many years ago, full of optimism as a homeowner after years of renting a place.

Hey everyone, this is where I remind you that this podcast can't continue forever without your support! Pick up one of my poetry books, tell a friend about the podcast, the usual rate and review stuff.

Links to purchase all my books (poetry and otherwise, if you're so inclined) can be found at my site:

https://LefthandRob.net

There's also a link there to some Social Justice causes that could use your money to keep doing their good work.

To my long-time listeners, thanks for sticking around! For all the new folks, welcome!



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

12 August 2021

Episode 132: My Neighbor the Rabbit

A brief, light ode this week to the fuzzy little bunny who lets me take their picture and eats the grass (and probably carrot tops) in my yard. It's a fuzzy little poem that could use a little more work, maybe, just like the little bunny who isn't as scared of me as they ought to be.

My dear fans of the podcast, here we are after 15 months together. I began this podcast for 2 reasons: 1. To make the opportunity to read out loud the poetry I'd been writing for all these years, and 2. To sell some poetry books. Goal 1 - accomplished! Goal 2 ... Folks, I'm not asking you to head over to Amazon and buy my poetry books apropos of nothing. They make great gifts. They look good while taking up not much space on your bookshelf. The proceeds from sustained sales of them would go a long way to making this podcast pay for itself. I've hinted, suggested, proposed that my books are out there, and maybe I'm just impatient, but it's been just the baker's dozen of us (there's 12 of you out there listening regularly, plus me!) along on this journey. As much as I appreciate an intimate venue, if it's not in your means to buy a book, then help spread the word about the podcast. Your friends care more about your recommendation than anything I could tweet or post about. Let's keep this little art project of ours going together. Let me feel your love.

You know who else needs love?

Black People, LGBTQ people, immigrants and refugees. 

Open up your bank accounts and give some money to the good organizations doing the work to make the world more equitable for everyone. Or your time, or whatever.

Sometimes I wonder if it's because I made the decision last year to begin sharing this message in every podcast episode and every podcast post like this that my audience has remained limited. But honestly I don't care. It would eat me up more inside if I DIDN'T say something in every episode, every time.

OH OH OH And get vaccinated if you haven't (or if you can, I know this podcast is available worldwide, unlike the vaccine) and keep wearing your mask!

So to recap: Go do some good! Get vaccinated and wear a mask! Tell people about the podcast and the companion books so I can keep doing this.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

07 August 2021

Episode 131: House Band at a Casino

I've spent almost no time in casinos, and given my awareness of my luck at games of chance there's a good reason why. However, I have been a working musician on and off over the years and many of my friends are full-time working musicians (damn good too). So I respect the hustle and the need to pay rent and furthermore just to perform (hi, I have a poetry podcast, whatsup). So with all that in mind, I give you this week's debut of "House Band at a Casino."

OH - quick note that this week's poem has the theme music I created for the podcast playing underneath the poem itself. Seemed like a neat thing to do, a little experiment. If I had more time to devote to the podcast I'd figure out how to record something fresh to lay under the reading each week. But now I'm just rambling. 

If you've read this far, you seem to have some interest in this podcast. Thanks for that, I appreciate it! This is more than a one-way communication, though. Your feedback is important to me. Did you like a particular rhyme scheme? Did a topic strike your fancy and you'd like to hear more poems like that? Did you absolutely hate something I read and worry that I might inflict a similar poem on you in the future? How should I know? That's where you come in. There are so many ways to get back to me:

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 

House Band at a Casino

The dichotomy of the soul

That must exist for

the lounge singer

That unknown musician

on stage

at the casino,

 

the house band

in a house built

on a sketchy grasp of math

But the split

must run deep

For they ply their trade

Express their talent and

speak their vocation

 

But to a largely

disaffected audience

who are otherwise

consumed

By greed

or addiction

Rare is the soul

who just pops in

to hear the house band play

Thank you, house band.

Play on.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

30 July 2021

Episode 130: Scoping

This poem has been, appropriately, in the works for some time. I believe it's the first I've ever written about my father, though I have thoughts for several more. The text of the poem is at the bottom of this post, as this is another debut of a work.

If you've read this far, you seem to have some interest in this podcast. Thanks for that, I appreciate it! This is more than a one-way communication, though. Your feedback is important to me. Did you like a particular rhyme scheme? Did a topic strike your fancy and you'd like to hear more poems like that? Did you absolutely hate something I read and worry that I might inflict a similar poem on you in the future? How should I know? That's where you come in. There are so many ways to get back to me:

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

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Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

Scoping

I'm standing on the landing

Of our brand new house,

staring out into the yard.

My son asks me what I'm doing,

and I reply

That I'm thinking about something.

 

In my thinking I am tinkering

Building out a shape,

Resolving the problem.

Working out the requirements

As my father did

So many times when I was a son.

 

I never gathered why it mattered

why he just stood there.

Staring at an empty parcel of our yard,

or a wall of the house

Why not just start doing?

 

He was scoping in that moment

As he stood there still.

His mind assembling the pieces

and the measurements

He would tell me.

 

Eventually I knew I would see

Something new out in the yard;

Or some fresh construction:

Bringing craftsmanship

And utility to our home.

 

And as I am standing on the landing

Staring out the window

of our brand new house,

My son asking me

why I was just standing there…

 

I know that in so many small ways,

I have become my father.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

23 July 2021

Episode 129: Ask Not For Whom The Vulture Lands, It Lands For Thee

Another fresh poem making its debut on the podcast this week! I've been reading a lot of more sparse poems lately, but "Ask Not For Whom The Vulture Lands..." is step back in the direction of using more words to give us some rhythm in addition to rhyme. You can find the text of the poem at the bottom of this post, but before moving on I wanted to offer my apologies to John Donne, Ernest Hemingway, and Edgar Allen Poe for borrowing from all of them in the writing of this piece. Like Harry Chapin said in his live recording of "30,000lbs of Bananas," you'll know it when it comes by.

If you've read this far, you seem to have some interest in this podcast. Thanks for that, I appreciate it! This is more than a one-way communication, though. Your feedback is important to me. Did you like a particular rhyme scheme? Did a topic strike your fancy and you'd like to hear more poems like that? Did you absolutely hate something I read and worry that I might inflict a similar poem on you in the future? How should I know? That's where you come in. There are so many ways to get back to me:

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

Ask Not For Whom The Vulture Lands, It Lands For Thee

One hazy morning while out walking

The wife, the dog, and I were talking

(Only spouse and I were talking;

The dog was just out there to pee).

 

We happened on a large black bird

I wondered if she had overheard?

Of what and which we both were talking

And if she'd swooped down to see.

 

At first I thought she was a turkey

We get them 'round here, so often lurking

In the woods where folks go walking

Maybe it … was a he?

 

And then I took a closer look and found

That this bird was far too round

I took his measure, firmly marking

That bird was not a wild turkey.

 

I paid my wife this next cognition

Aided by my further vision

A closer look without gawking:

This was a vulture, Comma, turkey.

 

A turkey vulture there just sitting

Eying roadkill, stock-still sitting.

Dare I say its best at lurking

Against the roadbed's adjacent quey.

 

And so we left him (her?) there in peace

The wife, the dog, and by default, me.

We left that turkey vulture to his hawking

Obeyed his silent, hungry plea.

 

Thus some truths eternal hold

Be they often meek or seldom bold

See me sane and never barking,

Ask not for whom the vulture lands:

It lands for thee.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

19 July 2021

Episode 128: Axial Tilt

One of the things I enjoy writing poems about - as you may have guessed by now - is the weather as I experience it throughout the year. My problem of writing snow poems is well documented, both here on the podcast and in my poetry books (which you should be buying, look, the link is right there). But now I turn my sweated eye toward our current season here in the northern hemisphere, as we find ourselves in the depths of Summer. This is born "Axial Tilt," this week's entry. Well, last week's entry, but I'm a little late to the game this week.

If you've read this far, you seem to have some interest in this podcast. Thanks for that, I appreciate it! This is more than a one-way communication, though. Your feedback is important to me. Did you like a particular rhyme scheme? Did a topic strike your fancy and you'd like to hear more poems like that? Did you absolutely hate something I read and worry that I might inflict a similar poem on you in the future? How should I know? That's where you come in. There are so many ways to get back to me:

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 

 



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

08 July 2021

Episode 127: Ducklings

We walk the dog every morning and our walks take us past some of the drainage ponds that dot our little subdivided corner of the world. The pond in question - the pond that inspired this poem - is affectionately called "The Duck Pond" by my wife and me. Because last Fall we saw a number of ducks congregating there, I mean, it's pretty simple. Anyway, while walking the dog one morning recently I noticed a big white heron (egret? I think this was a heron, for the purposes of the poem it was a heron, but you can check the photo for yourself: https://lefthandrob.tumblr.com/post/655522651118403584) hanging out in the pond. Given the morning light and the fullness of the pond from recent rain, this was too good a photo opportunity to pass up. Of course as I crested the hill between myself and the pond I soon realized that there was not 1 but three herons (egrets?) hanging out. And a mother duck with her ducklings going for a swim. And thus the photo linked above was born. And thus this week's poem was inspired as I meditated on how damn peaceful the whole scene was, even though there's construction happening a hundred yards away from this bucolic vista.

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

02 July 2021

Episode 126: Patriotism in New England

America: The United States thereof. I'm a firm believer that if we work toward the principles that we espouse that we could actually have a decent place for most everyone. I am also fully aware that this has not, is not, and will not be the case for a good number of people for years to come. But the work continues. This week's poem focuses on some of the symbolism of this nation-state we call home and hopefully you feel the call towards a better America for everyone in the poem.

Happy Independence Day, America!

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

27 June 2021

Episode 125: A Wild Man's Dream

Y'all. Folks. My friends. Listeners. Poetry fans. A week ago my wife and I were on our way - in the car- to New York City to see the Foo Fighters perform the first concert @ Madison Square Garden since the pandemic began for most of us last March. And it was a glorious show. Whether or not you're a fan of that specific band, we all know the feeling of joy that coming back into the world and doing something that was not possible while we all worked to fight the disease that ravaged the world -- and in many places still does! Get your shots, people, if you haven't! This is important. This concert was for those of us who have been fully vaccinated and it was amazing. You too can enjoy amazing things again when you've had your shots and are back in the world. This week's poem is about that joy.

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

18 June 2021

Episode 124: Shallow Sky

Another ambient piece this week, meant to evoke the feeling of standing under low-hanging clouds in the night sky of June when you're trapped between the awe of nature and the fact that you're tired and you wish the dog would just wrap up his business already because you're ready for bed.

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

11 June 2021

Episode 123: Amazon Bottle Brush Review

I have a fraught relationship with Amazon. On the one hand, they provide a facility for me to publish my books (including my poetry books. Ahem) and also get pretty much whatever I realize I need with a few swipes and taps while also donating a tiny bit of that purchase back to an organization for which I care. ON THE OTHER HAND, Amazon exploits people via horrible working conditions and my consumer habits are funding the second-coolest billionaire rocket out there when he could be putting a good chunk of that money into any number of social programs, soooooooooooooooo 

But when I leave product reviews, I like to do them in the form of poems, because duh. Thus this week's poem.

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

03 June 2021

Episode 122: Sorry About That!

A low-stakes poem this week, a wry look at how we're able to call forth the rain when all we've been waiting for is ... rain. And how Mother Nature can go a little overboard in Her response when she does make it rain.

Hey, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

28 May 2021

Episode 121: Untitled Inspirational Poem

Some poems take multiple passes, a lot of tinkering and thought, to take the shape of something I'd dare share with the world. Others just kind of flow out of the pen onto the page and I like them just as they are.

This week, it's the latter. This Untitled Inspiration Poem just poured out recently as I stood in my kitchen one afternoon. Yeah, it has a touch of cliché to it, but there's nothing wrong with a little verbal remix, especially when it works rhythmically. Which I think it does, and it's my podcast and no one who listens to this thing has ever commented that my sense of rhythm is off (or commented much of anything, 'sup?), but I digress. I'm also doing something different with this week's show notes. Since this poem isn't typed up anywhere and it's a shorter work, I'm putting the text of the poem into these show notes. Check the bottom for the poem.

But before that, you know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

Donate to the Souther Poverty Law Center

Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 

Untitled Inspirational Poem

If you're waiting for

a better, more unfettered

time

Do not decline to act

instead attack and say

"seize the day"

(carpe diem)

See them, all the things

you're waiting on

Take them on

Put upon your shoulders

the mantle of action

for inaction breeds the like

To psych yourself out of a taste

Leaving naught but

sour grapes



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

22 May 2021

Episode 120: Works of Love

I wrote this week's poem many years ago, and reading it through this week in prep for recording the episode, it struck me again how much it would work as a song. I mean, it needs a chorus stuck in there, but that's an easy enough retrofit. You'll also notice if you're reading along in Blue., from which the poem comes, that the final line has changed. You'll also notice a missing period at the end of the second stanza. Both of these will be changed in my upcoming collected works poetry book (Coming 2022? How does that make you feel?). If you're NOT reading along at home, well, I mean, I included a link to Blue. above, and from there it's a quick hop to my other poetry books as well. Oh look at that, a link to them as well! But I digress. Enjoy this week's episode: "Works of Love."

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

14 May 2021

Episode 119: Re Mahogany 225

More inane absurdity for your ears this week, thanks to an old can of wood stain I found while cleaning out the painting supplies for the local high school's theatre department. You can find it all over my social media (tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram - Insta is where a lot of my new poetry shows up these days, in the caption FYI). Just the word "woo" instead of "wood" made me giggle - yes giggle; not chuckle, smile, laugh, bray, snicker, chortle, etc. I giggled. Because it said "woo." Look at the photo, it's hilarious in context.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

07 May 2021

Episode 118: 20 Hours a Day

Hey, Internet - well, hey: Rob's fraught relationship with the Internet! I wrote a poem about you!

A brief poem this week that some of you might find a little too familiar for comfort. All I can say is: Same.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

02 May 2021

Episode 117: The Sighting

Coming at you from the earliest parts of the 21st century comes this poem of the time the clouds hung low in the skies over my place of business and the Good Year Blimp waddles past on its way from one sporting event to another. As I say in the episode, it's one of my oldest poems that has stood the test of time - meaning I feel comfortable sharing it on the podcast and am not too terribly embarrassed by its continued existence in the world. Thus we have, "The Sighting."

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

23 April 2021

Episode 116: Spring Hike

A few weeks back, my wife and I went on a hike with some dear friends of ours that we had not seen since the first pandemic restrictions went into place. Given that we're still working our way back to safe and I was at the time unvaccinated, we chose to get together outdoors and enjoy the Spring weather with a hike. And so this week's poem "Spring Hike" was born.

"Spring Hike" is straight from my Instagram account, where I post photos for which I write accompanying poems. If Insta isn't your thing, I cross-post all of my entries to my Facebook page, my Twitter account, and my Tumblr. If you'd like to check out the inspiring photo and read the poem for yourself, here's a link:

https://lefthandrob.tumblr.com/post/647675638621339648/amongst-the-trees-i-pause-to-wheeze-elevation

 

While I'm sure "Spring Hike" will appear in my next poetry book (coming 2022? Does that move you to know that? let me know), I like it enough that I couldn't wait until then to share it with you in print or the podcast, and so here it is.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

18 April 2021

Episode 115: Triple Check and CYA

Here I am again, updating on a Sunday. I did tell y'all that it would be every week-ish. Still my apologies for the delay, consistency is key to growing an audience, and while you're but a handful of faithful listeners (thank you!!) at present, maybe some day I'll explode. Who knows? It just takes one Buzzfeed article, right?

But you want to know about this week's episode. "Triple Check and CYA" was written to cheer up a friend several years back, after they experienced a quintessential Corporate American Issue, and maybe even just a Corporate issue? The seed of the thing was the need to "CYA," or "Cover Your A**" when you are undertaking a potentially corporate-politically risky action. I guess the current parlance would be to say "make sure you have the receipts." Thus from that conversation was this poem born. It's certainly a performative piece.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

09 April 2021

Episode 114: Accompanist

Poetry covers such a broad range of the human experience that I wouldn't expect all of you who listen to the podcast to share this experience, but I'll be willing to wager that there's at least a partial overlap between listeners of this and people who have or will attend music recitals, or more broadly: intimate acoustic music performances.

"Accompanist" was born out of this experience. My specific memory is a bit fuzzy, but given the context of the poem, I'm fairly certain it was a guitar recital that prompted this brief ode to live musicians.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

04 April 2021

Episode 113: Eye Opener (An Easter Poem)

About 10 years ago or so I decided to try the whole giving up something for Lent concept. I went easy, I thought, I swapped out coffee for tea. As someone who's prone to headaches, it was a bit of a roll of the dice, but I found some good caffeinated tea that I could fit the bill. For the record, to know me is to know the deep abiding joy that coffee brings me - not just the caffeine, but the flavor. So now you know the about me. Anyway, when Easter finally arrived, I was back on the good stuff and was then moved to write this poem, and since this week's episode is super late thanks to the roadwork going on outside my house on the days when I would normally record and upload an episode, it's Easter! So please enjoy my Easter poem - if you're of a Christian Faith, Happy Easter! For everyone else, Happy Sunday, and to everyone, sorry this was so late!

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

26 March 2021

Episode 112: Hubris and Roller Skates

"Hubris and Roller Skates" is my ode to Physics, of which I am a fan (still rooting for that FTL workaround that's sure to come any day!), but alas only have a very basic grasp. Like, I get vector math and grasp the concepts, but I'm not up to the math. Respect and love to all the physicists out there, you make Space Exploration and all this amazing technology possible!

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

19 March 2021

Episode 111: The Growing Season

Sad, wistful, metaphorical even. "The Growing Season" is a poem I wrote while going through some things many years ago, and now I'm sharing it with you! Well, to be fair, it's been available in my book "Blue." for a while, so.

It was also featured as a spoken-word piece a local college dance company used in a recital, but I can't find the video to share with you! If this rings a bell for you, share a link in the comments!

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

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Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

11 March 2021

Episode 110: Pistachios and Life

After last week's dramatic reading, I've chosen something a bit more dialed back, though philosophical in nature. I also promise that I wasn't high when I wrote this week's poems -- this is how my brain naturally works, if you haven't figured that out for yourself by now. "Pistachios and Life" and "A Response to Pistachios and Life" punch above their weight and while it's well-trodden philosophical ground, I think it's also a universal experience we've all shared in one way or another. Right?

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

05 March 2021

Episode 109: Fracture

Things get a little personal this week with "Fracture." I get low-grade headaches fairly often (yaayyyyy) but rarely, a full-blown migraine comes on. Less so now that I've learned to avoid certain triggers, but the experience inspired this poem. Also, Trigger Warning: If you're a migraine sufferer, listen with caution.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

25 February 2021

Episode 108: Retinal Pressure in the wild on Mars and Adherence to Stricture, or Perseverance

It's a couple of mouths-full of titles for this week's episode, which I'm offering as a tribute to NASA and the JPL for all their hard work in getting another rover onto the surface of Mars. Well done all!

"Retinal Pressure..." is as much a poem about longing for Spring after tiring of Winter as it is about Mars, if not more so.

"Adherence..." is a celebration of the landing, pure and simple. My office got mighty dusty when I saw the cheer rise up from the control room last week, again I say well done all!

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

19 February 2021

Episode 107: Why Do Men Go to Sea

As promised, this week it's the later version of the same draft that I forgot to remove from my list of draft poems. It's in many ways the same poem, and maybe in my next book I'll blend the two together and make some sort of super poem from them. Anyway, it's a nice little bit of verse and I'm happy to have shared it with you. I'll close on this by quoting John Mulaney: "Well that's the same joke twice!"

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

12 February 2021

Episode 106: Prayer for the Eternal Wanderer

This doesn't happen often, but occasionally I'll pull together a draft of a poem and then rework it into its final form, even publish it in a book, but keep the original draft filed away. And then I later discover that draft after the first poem is already out there in the world. And then I rework the draft again and publish it in another book. So far, this has only happened with one poem, of which I am reading the first iteration to you this week, "Prayer for the Eternal Wanderer," from "Blue." Thematically it shares a space with episode 004's poem "In the Far and Bitter End," but comes at the sentiment from a different angle, the remove of the person who stayed behind and seeks to divine the motives of our protagonist of the waves. Next week I'll read the latter version of that poem. It is an exercise for you, dear listener, to determine whether or not I should have left well enough alone. 

Ah, quick programming note: the mic was a little hot this week, I'll fix it next week, promise.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

05 February 2021

Episode 105: Clean Sweep

It's currently over 50 degrees (F) outside my office where I sit as I type this, but we've just come out of something of a cold, windy spell. You know, Winter. Some winters back, when I lived in a very old house with an old furnace plugged into an even older chimney, the gas meter reader came out of my basement with some bad and dare I say life-threatening news - there was a big build up of carbon monoxide around the furnace. And I thought the sleepiness I felt every evening as I sat in front of the TV just a thin covering of aging floorboards away from said furnace was from having to get under a blanket in the drafty old house. Nope. What happened next was ... well, that's why you're here this week! Enjoy "Clean Sweep," and stay warm and safely cozy, friends.

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

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Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

29 January 2021

Episode 104: Existential Angst & Espresso and Coffee: Good for the Soul

Coffee. It's what has been keeping me warm since the weather took a sharp downward turn vis a vis the mercury this January. As such, I offer for you 2 caffeinated poems from my first book of poetry that touch on or directly address the beverage itself.

"Existential Angst & Espresso" sprang from an empty chalkboard meant to tell us who was pulling our shots and adding our sugary flavored syrups that day. "Coffee: Good for the Soul" is a brief ode to the beverage itself - not the last I have written! No, much like snow, it would seem, I have more to say about my favorite warm bean water.

In closing, I'll say that coffee in various forms has touched my life over the years, as I'm sure it has for many of you. But this is a discussion for another time - and perhaps a poem of it's own. For now,

You know the drill:

I want to hear what you think of the podcast, whether it's a specific poem or the format, or whatever's on your mind! Leave a review or a comment in your podcast app, or catch me on Twitter @Lefthandrob.

After listening to the podcast (or while listening), visit one of these sites and donate for the cause, because All Black Lives Matter and my fellow white (and cis) people we need to get in the game:

Donate to Black Lives Matter

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Donate to the Equal Justice Initiative

Transgender Law Center

The poems will continue to flow, but so must the Justice.

 



Left Hand Poetry: My Podcast of Poems

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