Poetry Cure: Lasting, Leaving, Left by Robin Dyke

In Robin Dyke’s emotionally charged collection Lasting, Leaving, Left (Promontory Press) existential questions of what it means to live take shape in three sections—Lasting, Leaving, Left. Together they explore the meaning of memories, life stages, and what we leave behind when we’re gone.


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An Interview with Robin 

All Lit Up: Tell us about your collection.Robin Dyke: I wonder about it as well! It’s a sampling of the range of what catches or occupies my attention and my attempt to image what might be worthy of the attention to another. Catch them off guard perhaps. It’s a weave of gratitude, regret and humour (to me at least). The title; a pattern for grouping that naturally emerged after. Likely a reflection of my frame of mind and age.ALU: Do you have any steadfast writing rituals?RD: Do it! Block out the time, show up, do the work. Try it out, listen for the reaction, work it out. Let it tell you that its done. And, read, read others work and learn.ALU: What’s the best piece of advice anyone has given you about writing, or life?RD: Apply to question above: There is only do or not do. Yoda. As with the advice, there is only use or no use!ALU: What, outside of other books/writers, inspires your writing?RD: Something that presents itself in the moment, invites my attention to appreciation, wonder or curiosity. Unexpected reaction of seldom readers of poetry who discover pleasure, introspection, chuckles in my poems.

The Poem

Black & White PhotoCirca Winter 1940 Your smile is for meFrom your arms, I look outto a wondrous worldno sense of distant threatMatching parkas frameour faces with snow white rabbit furI seem about to laughwhile you gazeunderstated in trim glamour -curls of subtle coiffured haireyebrows highlighted slightlya hint of lipstickSo much the camera caughtLove openly exposedbefore seven decades flash -to a mood of sepia being castNow I hold you, stroke your hairwhite and soft as that fine rabbit trimI sponge your brow, lookfor connection in your vacant eyesa mirror to the threshold on which you poseSilence as you slip awaycolor seeps to black and white- From Lasting, Leaving, Left by Robin Dyke (Promontory Press, 2015)
Robin is working on his next act as a poet. Most recently he served as an Adjunct Professor at the UVic Gustavson School of Business. His previous work as a consultant, executive and educator focused on helping organizations and individuals articulate and act on their visions. He has worked in and with a broad range of organizations, industries and countries: executive positions in the real estate development, consumer goods, and fast food industries; management and consulting roles in forest products, retailing, publishing, hospitality, engineering, international development, utilities, industry associations and government. His work spanned five continents. Robin is a 94 Forward Board Member. He served as a Venue Chair during the 1994 Commonwealth Games in Victoria. He has a MBA from SFU and a BA in industrial psychology and economics from UBC.
During the month of April, you can buy Lasting, Leaving, Left as well as  any of our featured Poetry Cure books for 15% off (+ get a free notebook to jot down your moments of reflection).Keep up with us all month on  TwitterInstagram, and  Facebook with the hashtag #ALUpoetrycure.