Back story: When I was a youth living hand-to-mouth on the road, life was not easy by any means. While others in my small town of 2,200 residents found steady work or went to college, I chose to make my way day by day hitchhiking from town to town and state to state. The one thing I never did was beg on a street corner or ask for a handout. Raised as a carpenter from the time I was twelve, framing homes in Texas, and condominiums in the mountains of Colorado paid the fare at times. Washing dishes for nights in a row would also provide meals and money to continue traveling. Playing music for meals and tips in Oregon, and picking apples in Chelan, Washington for thirty straight days granted shelter, money and the opportunity to work alongside Mexican migrants. Nothing came easy. This lifestyle, while dangerous and insecure, did furnish imagery for song and poetry. I lived by these means for more than a decade.
When I began to earnestly put this project together I conducted a thorough search through my seventeen travel logs that led to the rediscovery of nearly 900 partial and completed songs, stories, letters to friends and loved ones never sent, plans for videos that could never afford to be produced, and a few ragged sketches of myself and my on-the-road compadres. Of course, I’d gone through my logs hundreds of times over the years searching for one thing or another, but never in this much detail.
Once I had cataloged when the text was written and I actually studied the text, I realized that I was just a teenager and in my early twenties when the great majority of these works had been penned. I was pleasantly surprised by the somber words woven together that spoke truth in every phrase. Writing, whether we’d like it to be or not, is all about the truth. Poetry from a Road Scholar points to a repeated history of human yearning. The wanting need to be with someone, the sincere beginnings followed by the attempts at reconciliation and the angry pissedoffidness that follows each failed attempt. Some works are humorous, some are sprinkled with sexual overtones, some are deep and perhaps even philosophical. Most are in plain English written by a young man from Upstate New York.
Now, if you would like a copy, please tell me who you would like me to sign the book for. Thank you very much.