The presence of poetry, on an ongoing basis, may inspire some people, according to longtime Dundalk resident, poet Dennis Sidney Martin.
Martin has been writing since the sixth grade but didn’t get his work published until he was in his 40s.
Originally born in Georgia, Martin was drafted to Fort Holabird to do military training after high school.
After training in Maryland, Martin served in Vietnam for a year and then went to Fort Hood, Texas, before migrating back to Dundalk in 1972.
Once settled back in Dundalk, Martin worked numerous jobs before accepting a position at Consumer Credit Counseling Service located in Baltimore.
“The company was located in Baltimore City when I first started working there, then they relocated to Catonsville,” Martin said.
Martin worked at CCCS for 37 years before retiring in 2011.
Although Martin had a full time job, it didn’t hinder him from writing poetry. He has written close to 1,500 poems over his lifetime.
Martin has published 13 books of poetry, three novels and 14 stage plays, along with, articles, essays, scenes and short stories.
There is not one particular thing that inspires Martin to write poetry, he said, but he does use personal methods to find ideas to write about.
“I think of a theme, write the titles down — about 70 to 100 of — and work through each title until I’m done,” Martin said.
He added, “If you sit around and wait for inspiration without thought of what you want to write about, that’s what causes writers block.”
As a member of the Ateaze Senior Center for the past six years, Martin has conducted poetry readings, poetry workshops and contributes to the center’s monthly poetry group.
“The interest I have seen in the fine arts has been marginal at best,” Martin said. “This makes for a sad commentary on the community, and I would like to change that.”
Martin wants to see poetry thrive in the area of Dundalk.
Martin’s poetry book can be found at www.lulu.com/spotlight/dsmartin.
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