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Nolo Segundo

     The poet is in his 70's now and has lead a peaceful life since his marriage almost 40 years ago. But his 20's-- the time he came of age-- were more like Dickins' '...the best of times, the worst of times...'. At 20 he went to England to do his junior year abroad. A couple years after college he suffered a major clinical depression; he almost drowned in a Vermont river and had a near-death experience, one that shook his former agnosticism to the core. He was opposed to the Vietnam War yet for some reason, still rather inscrutable to him, he went to teach ESL in the war zone of Phnom-Penh, Cambodia, in '73-'74. There he developed a deep affection for the Cambodian people, and though he heard stories about the brutality of the Khmer Rouge towards their own people, he could not believe they would have been capable of the genocide of the 'killing fields'. After the war forced him to leave Cambodia, he spent over a year teaching ESL in Taipei and later Tokyo. A year after he returned, he met the woman he would married. Some of his poems are about the strange thing called aging and its paradox of wearing down the body while gradually-- or so it seems to him-- freeing the soul. The rest try to explore that inexplicable Mystery permeating each one of us and that seems to manifest Itself every so often, in ways subtle or strange. At times the poet has felt that life is just one long dream, and he has dreamt such dreams many, many times before.