A little over a year ago, I was paddling off The Big Island in Hawaii in a six-man outrigger canoe. I got back to the shore and felt my heart hurting. I had never had a heart attack before, I thought it might've been something like indigestion. I managed to get myself back to my hotel room, collapsed on the floor, and that’s where I had a near-death experience.
What was it like laying dead (or “near death”) on the carpet of a hotel room? I can’t describe it in words. I was out there, and there was a presence of being out looking at the earth and, almost like you're on the moon or something, looking back towards the earth. And it was shrouded of course with stars all around it. It was slowly turning and the most beautiful thing you could possibly imagine. I was airlifted to the hospital and when I was revived the doctor told me the heart attack I had was a widow maker. It kills 98% of the people who have it.
Then he said something I’ll never forget, “You're here for a reason. We don't know why.”
In June of last year, I began to post my poetry on Facebook. I’ve been a writer for over 40 years and didn’t expect there to be much of a response. What happened was unbelievable. Thousands of comments. Hundreds of thousands of likes of my poetry. A reach of over two million people.
A community formed as people shared their stories triggered by the poetry and photos I was posting. It was raw, it was real. It took off in a way that I didn’t plan and couldn’t have planned. My experience became OUR experience as people shared my words and share their stories.
We decided to create something to commemorate all of this. That’s why we’re printing a pristine quality poetry book for my friends, fans, and people who love poetry and photography.
My first book, SONG TO THE EARTH, is being published in 2019 after a groundswell of support across social media platforms and Kickstarter. This has been such an incredible journey for me, and you have all been a part of it. Let’s keep going.