Bio

It was 1970 something

It was 1970 something

That’s Dad Poet, not to be confused with Dead Poet.  I understand that there is an entire society for Dead Poets, but I am not yet qualified to join their ranks.

Some sage once said that there is only room in a man’s life for one great passion, or maybe it was obsession. Either way, if this is true I must accept the fact that I will never be famous for anything. One passion? It was true of Jesus in his quest to save the human race; it was true of Buddha with his quest for peace. But then again, I imagine that Jesus was a damned good carpenter and that Siddhartha must have had a hobby or two, maybe butterfly watching?

In the past I found myself with multiple blogs for multiple purposes, and I realized that not only was my story a bit hard to follow, but the task of keeping up with its various locations was prohibitive. So I decided to bring all my loves and obsessions together in one central hub, here on The Dad Poet Blog. I’ve talked about wearing “different hats” as if my personalities change with the change clothes, but the truth is that underneath this scalp I am just one person with many loves, challenges and responsibilities, not so different from you.

There might just be hope for this country yet.

There might just be hope for this country yet.

I am the tremendously proud father of the three coolest boys to walk the earth.  You can read more about them on the Father page and of course in regular posts on the blog home page. I have become good friends with my former wife, and I am the youngest of a family of six children that makes the show “Brothers and Sisters” downright spooky for me to watch.

I was told that what I wanted was “a fairy tale that does not exist,” and yet here I am at 43, in an astonishingly nurturing relationship with a beautiful man who is also my dearest friend. It was far more than worth the wait.

I am a poet who has been published in only a few small places, won a couple of minor awards, who writes whenever a pen is near, but never seems to submit his work anywhere. Books about poetry, fiction, birding and cooking are spread throughout my house, along with misplaced coffee cups and empty wine glasses.

I am not an accomplished birder; I’ve never had time or leisure for that, but I am an enthusiastic one, and try to weave a birding trip into every vacation.  In the mid eighties I cut my teeth on diurnal raptors and began as a hawk watcher until a friend from Cape May got me into water fowl and what I called hawk bait: the beautiful many colored warblers. I am terrible with recognizing songs though, and the recordings are hard for me to follow. After a while I cannot remember “bzzeet, bzzeet” from “bee buzz buzz.” I am still most happy and comfortable trying to discern distant birds of prey from from a mountain hawk watch.

I am again at school, and in the past have studied education, English and religion. I have worked as a cruise tour co-host, a radio personality and program director, a waiter and restaurant manager, a customer service representative and a voice for weather forecasts all over the country. Lately I have found myself something of a reluctant restaurateur. Hence the return to university.

I have been a choir director, a Sunday school teacher, a youth minister and a cynic. I created and helped to build a world wide network of fathers, called Gay Fatherhood. Involvement with this group is how I came to meet the men in the picture who support me in more ways than one, my two beloved friends and brothers, Vince, all the way across the pond in Northern Ireland, and Keith just a few hours south of me in Maryland.

Gay Fathers Support Group?

Gay Fathers Support Group?

I have traveled but have yet to see Alaska, Germany or Italy. The Caribbean was fun, but my favorite holiday was in Northern Ireland with my oldest son, visiting the dear Vince and his husband David. But I have also had the privilege of showing them around the woods and waterways of Penn’s Woods, my home country.

I love cooking; it’s a way to unwind and to care for friends and loved ones. Oh heck yes, I love the feedback too. “This was the best meal of my life!” was a recent favorite. At work I prefer to be in the front of the house, though lately it seems to me that we have spoiled people in the United States with that old adage, “The customer is always right.”

Favorite book? That’s hard to say, but if pressed (go ahead press me), I might say either Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway or Chiam Potok’s My Name is Asher Lev. Perhaps I’ll post sometime a long list of favorite authors and poets.

Favorite Movie? Big Fish or (You might have guessed it) Dead Poet’s Society and The Hours (Again with Virginia Woolf!), but there are many others.

Favorite TV Shows? Admittedly I don’t watch much, but two foot surgeries a few years ago made me sit down long enough to fall in love with CSI (Los Angeles, not that Miami crap), Without a Trace and the shenanigans of Boston Legal. I miss that show! I also enjoy Brothers and Sisters and LOST, and I think that BBC America is a godsend.

Okay, I’ve bored you enough. I can’t believe you actually read all of this. Don’t you have a life? For the rest of the story go back to the home page of the blog and for links to my loves and interests see the Father, Birder and Poet tabs on the top of the page.

Peace.

85 thoughts on “Bio

  1. Hey Mister Dad Poet.
    You really inspired and encouraged me to make a reading of Whitman´s When I heard at the close of the day.
    Your reading is so unpretentious – and exactly for that reason, so beautiful.
    I heard many readings of this poem. It must be sad that yours is the best one. And I mean that not as a complement, but as a fact.
    I am brazilian – and this means: I am a portuguese speaker and my english pronunciation must be something weird for english speaker´s ears. I teach English,I love poetry, I write poetry and so on. Anyway, I thank you. If you want to hear the reading you encouraged, it is here, in my blog.

    http://mundoaoavesso.opsblog.org/2011/10/30/451/

    I am watching your readings at You Tube.

    Thank you again.

    Ygor.

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    • Ygor, I have to tell you that I got rather choked up when I read your comment. It made me very happy. I simply cannot think of a better reward than this. Thank you. I have listened to your beautiful reading and have commented on your blog. I’ll be following you, young man. I am humbled to know that I played a part in your reading of that poem. What an honor! Again, thank you. You made my day.

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    • Hi Mr David J. Bauman,

      SoundEagle read it all too . . . . leaving my own life temporary aside to understand the general arch and gist of your journey through life.

      You have certainly been through a lot. I agree with you that it is far more sensible and convenient to gather everything into a single blog, as I have been doing with mine. SoundEagle would like to wish you and your partner all the best! It seems that you have found your soulmate. Congratulations to you and your partner! Please allow SoundEagle to explain as follows:

      There are three phases in the adult life. The first is the “Experimental Phase”, valid for a person usually aged between 17 and 35+, where the person tends to travel and sample the world to see what’s out there and where/how they fit in.

      The second is the “Consolidation Phase”, valid for a person usually aged between 25+ and 60+, where the person tends to be career-minded and seeks a partner to consolidate their wealth and to raise a family.

      The third is the “Soulmate Phase”, valid for a person usually aged 55+ or 65+ (depending on the age of retirement), where the person tends to be well-off financially and no longer needs to be concerned with career and/or raising a family. Aided by accumulated wisdom and wealth, the person is free to stay with the existing partner/spouse, or to seek one or more soulmate(s) in environments or circumstances that are (far) less encumbered by peer pressure, social expectation, career and/or family duties.

      What do you think of SoundEagle’s explanation, David?

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    • Thank you for your comments, Soundeagle. I think it’s probably a fair anaylysis of how life generally goes. But there are reasons why people depart from that norm. Perhaps a spouse passes on, or divorce happens, or for some reason people find a way to start over later in life. I just recently went back to school and finished by B.A. and am preparing for graduate studies. I figure, hey, I’m not dead yet, and if I live another fifty years, I don’t plan on just slowly sliding into the grave. :) I appreciate your visit here.

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  2. Thank you for sharing your story, it’s wonderful. Mrs. Dalloway is also one of my favorite books; Virginia Woolf is very close to my heart!

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  3. Now that’s what I call an ‘About’ page!

    We have almost nothing in common but I’ve got a feeling we’re going to get along like a house on fire.

    I’ve never understood that saying – surely a house on fire is to be avoided? Not going to avoid you, though – I like the way you talk about your kids.

    I was interested by what you wrote about bringing the strands of your life together under one blogging roof: I did the opposite and separated mine.

    Nice to meet you :)

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    • “He is forever leaving love notes for me and being romantic, but I try not to mind.” That was a delightful read. Pleased to meet you. I suppose I should have commented over there, but I will again I am sure.

      Thank you for what you said regarding my sons. They are the greatest, and they show up frequently in my videos, poems and posts. Being their father is the best thing that ever happened to me. I can see them all three stopping, and saying, really? Have you seen a professional about this?

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    • Oh, I am pretty certain that it is my favorite book ever. I’ve read it several times. Good to find a Potok lover! Thank you for stopping by and posting.

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  4. You’ve a wonderful blog. When I read your sidebar links, I knew I had to read your backstory. Bravo to you for coming home. I briefly dated a man in the last year who is also a proud father of three boys; the youngest of many siblings, who needs to discover his own support group. I cannot say that to him, so I guess I’m telling a stranger, sorry, the fun of blogland sometimes. That said,
    I wish to thank you for your wonderful writing, but above all, your honesty~

    P.S. A Room of Ones Own… we writers must all strive for that, no?

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    • Well said, and yes we must. Thank you for reading. I have some editing to do on a few of these pages. Just earlier tonight the formatting was lost on one of my favorite original poems. I will fix it in the next few days. For now, I must sleep (finally). Thank you again, and for sharing a bit of your story also.

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  5. Your writing is amazing, and I especially liked your comments in your Bio about ‘so many hats’. I am new to all this but am loving learning and exploring this WP community. Imagine! I found this wonderful blog of yours because I too love chickadees and enjoyed your comment on ‘fivereflections’. The wonderful web connecting us all. I look forward to enjoying all these and your future musings. Thank you for sharing.

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  6. Today is one of the days when waking up and opening the new windows to my new world make it all worth while. I am so thankful you stopped by and more so for your kind ‘like’ of my post To New Friends and New Places…because, it is for this very reason. I LOVE your site, I LOVE your outlook, and I LOVE your writing! There…have I shown you enough love for today? No? Well, stay tuned there will be more, I have no doubt. Three cheers to you sonofwalt…your boys are lucky to have you as a role model. Can’t wait to spend some time here.
    Rhonda

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  7. I love that you use the phrase Holy Cow. Always been a favorite of mine. They are not just words…I mean them! Looking forward to getting to know you.
    Rhonda

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  8. And I just have to say…the more I learn of you, the more I think we are so much alike! I too love birds (as you could tell from my blog), I am an avid coffee hound (my kids know I drink it for THEIR protection) and red wine (should leave more on the vine than I put in the glass, but what fun is that?), and I love poetry, family, love, and foggy, misty days. Just threw that one in!

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    • Oh, that old song, Rainy Days and Mondays Always Get me Down? Nope. They don’t. I love a rainy, foggy monday. And the night is a good place, not a scary one. We do in fact have much in common.

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    • I forgot to comment on those foggy misty days. Dang, how nice it is to meet another who is not let down by rainy days and Mondays. The best ever IS a rainy Monday! It’s perfect, and perfectly beautiful. But then again, I kinda like the blues too. . . I think Elton John was onto something when he said that sad songs make us feel so good. :) Now I gotta go catch up with you. I’ve been lost from my favorite follows since they changed to that scroll reader– I hate it! :(

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    • You and I are working off the same list. The blues are essential and add more than they take. And speaking of…Misty Mondays and Blues Sundays are how I roll.

      I stopped using the reader…too easy to lose people. Time..that’s the thing. Gotta make more time! Which I’ll do…to catch up w/you also. I love your site and am sure I’ve missed a lot. So, when I get there, forgive the mega likes and comments you are bound to get all at once. Just think of it as an extended stay. :)

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    • Awesome. And my porch, though crowded, always has an extra chair (it’s magic) and the beverages flow freely and often!

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    • Perfect. I have no front porch at this point. My window opens right onto the sidewalk! But I have a balcony out back, and a tiny courtyard with plants and a little table on the back stoop ready for margaritas!

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  9. This is such a great Bio, I just had to enjoy it again. I celebrate your ‘believing in fairy tales’ and how your expectation of a great love came true. May you enjoy, if you so chose – someday – a wonderful ceremony declaring it all to the world. I believe in dreams coming true. May more of the world continue to believe it too. On a last note, your final paragraph cracks me up! I enjoy your excellent writing. Keep up the great work.

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  10. It would let me post this in reply to Poetry Train comments, so I’ll post it here- Sir, is there a way to fix this and contact them I have over this, in teh report a bug thing, but no reply… This actually bothers me, because, I am gathering poems, and so much more in playlists so people have a better experience with poetry and all… I dont understand because I am not displaying products and such… There is not even one penny of anything, besides the costs for the tools to be on the net… It seems like there is always something trying to give poetry a bad name… There has to be a way, and some one that works for you tube that can help… The old youtube, I’d get comments all the time… I dont want this to happen…
    Well anyway if you are on facebook friend me.. I look forward to more work, and a friendship… John E, ps, send me the links to your blog &c… Thanks again…

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    • Well, I will try. Because I get tons of spam messages, so why would they block the comments that are not spam. They need to get their act together over at YouTube. I know I was blocked one night simply because of the amount of comments I left. So it seems their algorithms are off base, punishing people for involvement instead of encouraging it. Still, I don’t expect much from them. I have never once had one of my help emails responded to from them. Thanks for doing what you are doing though!

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  11. Thanks for visiting and appreciating my post. Yes, we all wear many different hats, a fact which Whitman wrote about so profoundly. As you recognize, the trick is finding our own best focus. Cheers!

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    • How did I miss this a month ago!? I am so sorry. Thank you so much for the compliment though! I love your blog, your writing voice, and your chutzpah! :)

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    • Oh, thank you, friend. I value those words, especially since they come from you. You are an artist with a soul. Though the modern music industry seems to think that there is some other kind.

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  12. Pingback: I’ve scored, now seven more to go « Help Me Rhonda
  13. as a mom-poet, i couldn’t possibly have read all that, i have so many things to do, but i am certain i liked most of it… ;) i found your blog through Andy McBride; glad i did.

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    • Ha! What a delightful response! Thank you for not reading the whole thing. Your own world of poetry and mom-hood needs you. :) And my sincere thanks to Andy. Glad you came by!

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  14. Yep, I have a life, albeit Life in the Slow Lane of the Photography Obsessed in Enforced Retirement. I have a liking for Buddhist Philosophy, have nearly every Tibetan dvd ever made and my best friend is my 2 yr old Canon DSLR.

    I also speed read, hence me making pretty short work of your About Page.

    But you pressed the ‘Like’ button on my PhotoBlog and along with wishing to thank you, I wanted to read your About page and find out who you are/were (which is the correct English?).

    Sounds like you’re a great Dad and have a Loving Partner. Thanks for stopping by my blog – hope you enjoyed your visit and you’re welcome to drop by any time you want a ‘Nature’ hit of the visual kind.

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  15. OH MY GOODNESS, I am so blessed to have found your site…from Gina at Professions for Peace. You, go, dad, poet, birder…I love how you brought your loves together in one place! For years and years I thought the same thing — how to bring my passions together. Now for many years, they are all housed under one roof, too (psychotherapy, meditation/mindfulness, yoga/body movement, writing, community, inspiring delight, and cultivating compassion…and, over the last six years now…being a mom). Such love to you. You encourage me to share more of my own poetry! Love, Lisa
    http://www.barefootbarn.com

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  16. My thanks for the pingback. Thank you also for alerting me to your work with your visit to mine. What a dynamic, positive-energy spreading blog site you have! I know where I will be stopping by any opportunity I get. In the meantime, all the best in your continued enjoyment of your work (in all your roles)!

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    • Thank you so much! And you are welcome. I liked what you did with the challenge, and I may yet give it a try this month. I liked your Tanka also. Thanks for the open door and for stopping by my place too! :)

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  17. Pingback: Bluestem Magazine / The Writer’s World

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