Now on Amazon!
An Accidental Diary
A sonnet a week for a year
An Accidental Diary has just been published. I am both surprised and extremely proud of my unusual book.
In writing a sonnet a week for a year, I discovered — almost 20 years later — that I'd created a wild subconscious diary in a year of transition.
It was whatever was on my mind Sunday night while working to meet my deadline.
It was what I had kept hidden from myself back then and what years later would happen: fond recollections and musings on loss, lust, love of family, my fear of dying alone, a sad divorce and, back then, even efforts to quit smoking.
I hope you’ll give it a read.
“The Naked House Painting Society”
“Easily the festival’s best. Riveting drama with genuine humor and intense relationships. Mystical in nature, the play turns on incisive philosophical dialogue.” — Winifred Walsh, The Baltimore Sun
“Slavery,” a play in one act
Ownership is the issue as two associates draft a patent at a huge law firm in Robert Bowie, Jr’s one‑act play “Slavery.”
“Crash & Burn PA”
“It’s pretty damned refreshing. Tightly woven, with comic prowess and a nicely fast pace. If you want a carefree night of fun and laughs, this is your ticket.” — Pandora Locks
“Witchcraft,” a play in one act
“‘Witchcraft’ offers the suspenseful flavor of Alfred Hitchcock show. The drama unfolds with many unanticipated twists and turns…” — Janet Stidman Evleth
Poet Laureate - Harvard Alumni Association
Robert is also an accomplished poet and HAA Poet Laureate. You can read some of his poems here.
Plays by Robert Bowie, Jr…
Sold-Out Shows, Rave Reviews!
Our FringeNYC premiere could not have gone better…
ONAJE sold out all five shows, the performances were riveting, and both audiences and critics were exceedingly positive. Check out these great reviews from onstageblog.com and Theatre is Easy (theasy.com) .
Thanks again to our incredible cast, crew, and creative team — and to everyone whose generous support helped bring ONAJE to life!
Out of the Shadows
Twelve or 13 years ago, in Indonesia, I saw a homeless woman resting in the shadows of a side street holding a sick child in her arms. She looked up indifferently at me as I passed through the shadows, but I saw her eyes.
They were part of a portrait of incurable poverty, not drugs or alcohol. I saw no family, no food, no resources and no hope.
It is a moment I can’t forget.
She was so beaten down. I could not tell her age. Her child was so young and quiet. Her eyes seemed vacant and without hope. It was a combination of abject poverty and also a renaissance portrait of Madonna and child.
Without thinking, I surprised myself. I reached into my pocket and handed her what I had. I have no idea how much money I gave to her. It was everything but it was a foreign currency.
I was instantly embarrassed at this unexpected burst of emotions, so I didn’t look back. I just kept walking.
I have come to conclude that no matter where we go, we live in our American culture, its vision of itself, and only caricatures of the outside world which have been baked into me and I take for granted. As Americans, we believe ourselves to be kind, but while it may be our nature to be kind, we protect ourselves from caricatures, like the poverty of strangers when it becomes too much.
When the caricatures fall apart, a different world takes its place.
She was not begging. I just found myself giving her a fistful of money and I kept walking. The money was balled up into my fist when I gave it to her.
I didn’t see her after I gave it to her.
When I turned away, I left the shadows and went into the sunlight and tried to leave it all behind. To forget about what I saw and what I had done. I was surprised to find that she had gotten up and followed me. She’d put her hand on my shoulder. Was she touching me to acknowledge the amount of money I had given her?
Yes I think so, but I think it was something more.
She pointed at my camera as if to say, “thank you and remember me.” She did not smile as I took her picture. She just looked at me with those eyes I can’t forget. I don’t need the photo but I return to it off and on.
I wonder if they are both gone now. It was a while ago. I still have that photograph. It is posted here. I want to remember her and never think of her as a caricatures of poverty.
My Heart Is Broken But I Saw Love at Work
I have always been a soft touch when it comes to animals. It has gotten me in trouble and on occasion broken my heart. My heart is broken today but it has also been reawakened. On the 4th of July, years and years ago, my first wife and I were driving past Towson...
Finding My New Voice and Learning to Listen to Others
I have just met a lot of feral cats in My Lady’s Manor in Monkton, Maryland, and I really like these feral cats! These are not the fighters on fire escapes I knew when I lived in inner-city apartments. Slightly before Thanksgiving, I was invited to set up an open mic...
A Little Pat on the Back from a Long Time Ago
Two weeks ago, I wrote about Professor William Alfred, my tutor in college, and how my affection has grown for him. Today, I will remember the other mentor for whom I have a continued and growing affection. Elizabeth Bishop (1911–1979) was, and still is, a very...
About Robert Bowie, Jr.
“Without the arts, we are a rudderless boat.”
— Robert Bowie, Jr.