More than 70 poems--some old favorites, others brand new. The author, Ric Masten, has challenged and inspired audiences nationwide for decades with his unique mix of musical ministry and poetry.

Product Code: 7335
ISBN: 9781558965393
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Skinner House
Pages: 104
Size: 8.5 x 5.5
Published Date: 05/23/2008
Availability:In stock
Price: $6.00

More than 70 poems—some old favorites, others brand new. Ric Masten has challenged and inspired audiences nationwide for decades with his unique mix of musical ministry and poetry. Best known as the author of the beloved hymn "Let It Be a Dance," Masten was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer in 1999. A pioneer of community ministry, Masten has been a Unitarian Universalist minister since 1971. His accolades include being named "Troubadour and People's Poet of Carmel" and the "Poet Laureate of Prostate Cancer" by the National Prostate Cancer Coalition.

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Let It Be a Dance
The Writing on the Wall
Déjà vu
The Good News
The Exile
Full Circle
Homesick at Home
Act of God
For Anne Sexton (After)
Voice of the Hive
Nancy Malone
Regarding Doctors
The Caterpillar and the Butterfly
The Letting Go
Death Is Death
Helpline Harry
Old Fossils Carbon Dated
On the Mountain
Days of Your Bore
Mother’s Last Words
Support Group
The Obituaries
Bilateral Orchectomy
Another Kind of Noah
From the Shore
The Alternative
Living in My Mind
A Word for Survival
Old Soldiers
Old Men
The Price You Pay for Sunflowers
When Giants Pass
Grandma Ollie Turns 100
Like Pharoah and the Man from La Mancha
Not Exactly a Command Performance
PSA Dread
The Prisoners
Mother’s Voice as Part of the Estate
Vanishing Species
House of Grandfathers
Watchful Waiting
Free Choice
Beginning the Deathwatch
The Wagon Master Syndrome
Garden Pavilion
Annual Checkup
Day of the Dogfish
An Encounter with Robinson Jeffers
Bixby Bridge Incident
An Evangelist on Cell Block PC
Mother Load
Turn About
Pebbles and Crumbs
Me and Pancho Villa
Crying for Chris
The Road Home
On Butterfly Wings
With Birth To Look Forward To
Whales Off Palo Colorado
Dance Benediction

Whales Off Palo Colorado

today I saw the whales
moving south along the coast
and had to stop the car and get out
and stand there just watching

one of them came in close to shore
and I thought to myself then
that the whole journey would be worth it
just to see the magic of this Atlantis — rising
blowing and steaming from the sea
an island of life
today I saw the whales
and I was healed

I can tell you now of the dancers,
the three girls
and the dark wet highway
and the car
that came hurtling into their young lives
and how the rain fell for five days
as we followed slowly
behind black limousines
three times — slowly — with our lights on

but the sun returned this morning
and the rain has washed the air clean
and brought
the Ventana mountains in so close
they cut my eyes
sometimes it hurts to see things clearly

for those girls
the dance had just begun
but they went out dancing
trailing veils behind them
and somehow this simple act
tells me that they too paused
somewhere along the way
and saw the whales
moving south along the coast
on a day like today

Praise for Going Out Dancing:

"Ric often said his poetry was like a corral around an idea that opened it up so that it could be seen and experienced. This collection of Ric's poetry is a "corral" around him, a revealing summary of his life and work. For me, reading them was a stroll through the 36 years I have known him!"

—John Frykman, Ph.D, is a California-licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and organizer of the first Drug Treatment Program at the Haight Ashbury Free Clinic.

"Ric has spent over forty years distilling his observations about life into poems nobody else could have written. As he enters hospice care, this collection of poems old and new goes to press. Ric, the venerable caterpillar who has had his butterfly moments, leaves us laughter and tears and the ever-fresh exhortation: 'Through the good times and the bad times too, let it be a dance.' "

—Gordon Gibson, minister emeritus, Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Elkhart, Indiana

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