Gene is a physician who has devoted much of his career not only to clinical medicine, but to teaching physicians and medical students to understand the ways in which suffering people and their loved ones try to understand their misfortunes and strive to overcome. This involves the privilege of entry into the depths of human thought , feelings, strengths, vulnerabilities, and aspirations. To help patients and to teach students in this manner has been regarded as a venerated art throughout the history of Medicine.
Poets analogously strive for no less than this. They also live in others' joys and sorrows and their appreciations of nature and the lebensvelt. They understand that people think and feel not so much in polished sentences and paragraphs as in images, words, and nuances and associations and, as physicians, they attempt to capture these rich instants. While each individual, possesses human sensibilities, for poets, these are amplified, characterized, given fine instruments, practiced and honed, recognized, and above all, shared.
When a fine art is endowed with expressive instruments, it becomes also a fine craft - and so with medicine and poetry. The folk school setting, as for the art-crafts such as weaving or blacksmithing, has the ideal ambiance for this poetry experience.
In his role as a poet, Gene said, " I initiated the writing program at the folk school in 1993 and was its first Writer in Residence. Nancy Simpson, noted poet, and I initiated the NCWNW in its current form, including its critique group."
Gene has been represented in anthologies, reviews, medical and lay publications. He has written two chapbooks and has recently compiled a collection. He has been responsible for five volumes of Freeing Jonah, an anthology of poetry from workshops at the folk school and the local community. Gene's poetry students have included physicians, nurses, and social workers in hospitals and hospices. In his many years of writing, and teaching at the folk school, he has approached poetry and human dynamics from a broad perspective with an ability to listen "with the third ear", continually discovering new meanings from others.
This coming workshop will focus on developing self-awareness of one's approaches to conceiving and crafting poems, expressive styles, and individual issues of each participant. Participants will write, discuss, and meet individually with Gene for in depth discussions. There will be no critiquing or evaluating.