Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. I wish everyone had the luxury and curiosity to read more poetry this month. More so, I wish everyone had the time and interest to write some poetry this month. Here’s my little contribution:

Ice Cream

The chill rains came
they never stopped coming
people faces buried
shuffled by in the gray
din of a bus’s gutter wake
and the wind’s incessant
shaking of premature screens

Read the rest here: https://medium.com/@cgerben/ice-cream-ec831cc1be66

Happy New Year

Happy New Year and welcome back, my beloved Tigers. With an Opening Day win today I see no reason why we’re not staring yet another 162-0 year straight in the face. Let the historic run commence.

Updates coming soon

Updates coming soon to parts of this site including CV, Research, and Teaching. Hold tight; it will be a sight to behold.


Song #6 // Hey Rosetta!, “Soft Offering (For the Oft Suffering)” [Second Sight]

Hey RosettaWhere do personal affinities come from? Favorite colors? Desire for rainy vs. sunny days? Preferences, likes, and inclinations? Are they learned? Passed on? Associative, or aspirational?

Is my daughter–18-months old at the time of writing this–forming her affinities right now? Is her city upbringing instilling a desire to be around people and noise? Am I informing some other proclivities? Did her early liking of sweet potatoes ultimately lead to my eagerness to buy and make sweet potatoes which further enforced her liking of sweet potatoes?

Chicken or egg stuff, I suppose.

I don’t mean to wax philosophic. Far from it. It’s often been said–and rightly, I think–that we are what we like. Our favorite music, books, foods, types of friends, surroundings, etc. are more “us” than the DNA in our cells and the look upon our faces. We don’t just inhabit the lives we live, we cultivate the lives we live, constructing them over time and growing annoyed or despondent when they fail to live up to our internal image.

My life, of course, is filled with such affinities, some that can be traced back to upbringing, or to a nostalgia for my upbringing, and some that come from another place, some place I can’t seem to visit or understand.

That place, I’ve always known, is on a rocky, foggy shore overlooking an angry ocean. Such a scene is painted in many hues of gray: the sky, weathered woodwork, dampened roping, and salty mist is all from the same palette. As a result, I love everything associated with maritime (including, it should be noted, the very word maritime): the songs, the smoke, the culture. I read about ships and shipwrecks, gravitate toward smoky meats and fishes, prefer days where I’m rained in, prefer walking in the rain, took my honeymoon in the Canadian Maritimes, eating our first week of marriage through mussels, oysters, salmon, and lobster. It was love amongst love (even if my wife didn’t necessarily share the same loves.)

So I’ll always dream of retreating one day to the sea, or as close to the sea as I can to spend the rest of my days in that damp, ghost-given memory that I’m either reaching toward or back for. It’s in me as much as it’s something I’m longing to attain. Either way it’s me.

And so this video comes along. Against the smooth, cracked boulders at the end of the world, or Newfoundland, it’s good to know that this band is out there doing God’s work. Or something like it. For me. For all of us.