Me on the Radio, and I Needed a Love Song

Poet's Corner
Poet’s Corner (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had almost forgotten to post about this; I’ll be on the radio tomorrow night, and I have a link for you to listen in. But it’s also day 19 of Poetry Month, and I need to post a recording for it.

For an hour after work tonight, I just dully surfed the net, while this post screen remained blank. I had thought about peace poems, serious poems, but they all felt too heavy for tonight. I needed a love song, a love poem, a lyrical one that could be set to music. But not that kind of love poem, not just sappy romance or infatuation, but something tender, something family, with deep love and good humor.

Frankly the news is getting to me. I’m glad they captured the second suspect. I understand the anger. I’m angry too.  But some of these calls for “justice” sound more like a craving for revenge. “Suspect” is a word that means something, and we have things like investigations and trials and due process for a reason. Still, I hear people say, “They should have just shot him right then.” Mob mentality. That’s not how justice works in this country. Since when did we start believing that if we watched CNN all day we’d know the facts?

Breath in, David. Okay, breath out.

So I needed something to restore my faith in humanity again. First shootings and bombings, and then blood lust and mob justice. I needed some comfort and security. Brian was napping; the boys were all an hour away at their mother’s, and though the cat was purring and loving, he was also sticking his butt in my face. I wasn’t amused, and it wasn’t comforting.

Then I remembered that tomorrow night WITF radio out of Harrisburg (FM 89.5 and 93.3) will be airing a program at 8 PM called “Center Stage,” and that I was going to tell you about it because in their pilot of a mini-show within that program they would be featuring me, and this blog! “Poet’s Corner” will be a six minute little piece from an interview I did with them back in October while promoting the Commonwealth poetry readings that I participated in along with four other Pennsylvania poets at our state Capitol Building.

My reading of my poem “Local News” starts at about 3:53 in the feature. Just click here and scroll down the page for the audio of Poet’s Corner. I’m honored to be on the program. Thank you, Carry Burkett for the interview and the opportunity.

English: Cabin at Steepletop, Austerlitz, NY, ...
Cabin at Steepletop, Austerlitz, NY, the home of poet Edna St. Vincent Millay in the later years of her life. Used by Millay as a writing studio (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And I want to encourage you to check out the entire program “Center Stage,” Saturday, that’s tonight at 8 PM (EST) because it show cases the husband and wife duo of Liz Queler and Seth Farber and their Edna Project, live from the main stage of the Midtown Scholar bookstore, where I I also had the pleasure of reading that day in October (Here’s the Podcast of that with it’s awkwardly funny opening!).  The Edna Project is their album on which they have set to music some of the poetry of Edna St. Vincent Millay.

I had a hard time finding a link on WITF’s page to listen to them streaming online, so you’ll have to use an outside website as your source. worked fine for me (click here). There will be no podcast of this show, so if you cannot listen, please click on the “Center Stage” page and scroll down to hear my six minutes of fame. If you missed the link first time, here it is again.

For today’s reading then here is a bit of love, some teasing and the security and stability we all need from those who are most dear to our hearts, as were Edna St. Vincent Millay’s and her sisters to each other. This a bit of love, admiration and tongue-in-cheek adoration “To Kathleen.” Someone critiqued one of my recent readings as a bit too sweet. You shouldn’t listen to this one then. No apologies, by the way. Edna can be sweet because she was brilliant enough to get away with it.

To Kathleen

STILL must the poet as of old,
In barren attic bleak and cold,
Starve, freeze, and fashion verses to
Such things as flowers and song and you;

Still as of old his being give
In Beauty’s name, while she may live,
Beauty that may not die as long
As there are flowers and you and song.

From the 1922 edition of A Few Figs from Thistles, by Edna St. Vincent Millay

19 Comments Add yours

  1. I enjoyed your Poet’s Corner interview. Did you notice he called it ‘our little Poet’s Corner’? I wonder if he meant to sound patronising?

    You said ‘coo-pon’ and not ‘kew-pon’! It’s funny how accents from another country seem the same to a foreign ear, when there are obviously subtle differences. I’d know a southern accent, a Noo-York accent and possibly a Minneapolis or Boston accent, but that’s about it. Do our English accents all sound similar to American ears?

    I was intrigued by how your poems start life; I never gave my process much thought.

    Finally – because this comment is starting to sound like one of your short stories>novellas>novels – your voice sounded different in conversation than it does when you read poetry. More…relaxed, for want of a better word.

    Your daily readings (okay, it was almost finally) are enjoyable as much for the sound of your voice as for the poetry. I find it interesting, as I’m sure other people do, to hear the voice behind the words. I am tempted to record something for my own blog. Not necessarily a poem.

    I’ll think about it.


    1. I’m tickled that you enjoyed this, Tilly. Thank you! And yes, I can tell the difference between a London accent, and a Welsh Accent. There seem to be various versions of Northern Ireland accents, some of them are almost impossible to understand if the speaker talks too quickly. But near Dublin it seems different again. But in imitating, I confess that I mix them all up. They do have something in common, but many differences in little ways. I’ve noticed there is a lilting inflection about the as in “as well,” for Welsh folk, and that they seem to like that phrase a lot. 🙂

      As for the Poet’s Corner, it is their show. I’m just the first featured poet on it. So I’m kind of tickled. Some of the difference in how my voice sounds could be the fact, as you said, that I am in conversation rather than reading a poem, but it could also be the fact that I’m speaking into recording equipment that costs probably thousands of dollars, as apposed to my little camera mic I use at home. 🙂 Thanks for all this wonderful feedback! 🙂


    2. I enjoy our discussions. You always make me think.


    3. What a cool compliment! I enjoy these chats too. 🙂


    4. Oh! And I only gave some of those things thought because I knew I’d be being interviewed, and I was on the other side of that mic before, so I tried to be prepared. 🙂 Anywho, I’m excited to hear whatever you record!


  2. How rude am I? I forgot to congratulate on being interviewed!

    Congratulations on being interviewed for the radio 🙂


    1. Haha, not rude at all! I figured you just figured radio was old hat to me. I actually did have my own radio morning show for years. I’ve got a total of 14 years in the broadcasting industry, but that’s another story. Still, it’s exciting to be interviewed about my poetry and this blog. 🙂 Thank you, Tilly!


    2. Really!? I never knew that! Doubly impressed.

      My son wants to go into radio production. He works for a TV shopping channel at the moment but his heart is in radio. His degree is in Politics & Philosophy but he fell in love with radio when he got involved with the campus station.


    3. It truly is a fun job. Stressful sometimes. I mean you cannot make 30 seconds last any longer than 30 seconds, and dead air is a sin. But I loved that job. Hard to make a living at it locally if you have a family to support, without being the big star of the station, and being married to it (live remotes and all that). I looked into moving into a bigger market after the breakup with my former wife. It was a religious broadcasting station, by the way that I was at at the time. But I couldn’t stand the idea of moving more than an hour away from my sons. Eventually I got hired as a broadcaster for AccuWeather, and was the weather voice of radio stations from Florida to Alaska. Also quite fun, but stressful. I moved into customer service and management for the raise, and eventually got into restaurants to go back to school. Mine is a long and twisted resume. 🙂


    4. They are always the most interesting.

      Here’s mine:

      Retail – shop floor then admin
      Recruitment – shop floor then admin
      Mother – best job I’ve ever had 🙂
      Writer – published incrementally



  3. This was sweet… and sweet is EXACTLY what was needed. thanks!


    1. Thanks! And you too, eh?


  4. keatsbabe says:

    The world seems a difficult place at the moment but there is always a corner for poetry. I am a huge fan of radio and even though my little show is very new I know poetry will be a huge part of it. Thanks for this. You know how much I love your voice (in a non-spooky admiring kind of way!)


    1. haha, No worries, I’m non spooked. And hey, I didn’t realize your radio show was going to be a regular thing! That’s wonderful! Can I tune in online from across the pond?


  5. slpmartin says:

    Must agree the events of the last few days..almost demand some retreat from the harsh terrain of life…thanks for gentle touch of love.


  6. I almost went right to 3:53, which would have been a mistake. The whole interview was a treat.
    I may have made reference to this line/idea before, but at 2:43 I was reminded (again?) of a Peter Mulvey song, “The Trouble With Poets,” with the essential “trouble” being that poets see poetry everywhere, such as in a sign along the road. Thank you for taking the time and care to share what you see. “Local News” is a perfect example of that. I love that poem.


    1. Thank you so much, for those sweet comments, HC. And thanks for taking the time to listen. I really am honored.


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