Doc, thank you for agreeing to do this interview and I would like to get right to it by asking you, why are you known as the depressed poet.
I have suffered from depression for over 30 years. It has been a struggle, and flat out confusing at times. While hospitalized for this a doctor suggested I try my hand at poetry, it turned out to be the best thing that happened to me. I became creative, I thought about things I had not thought about before and most importantly, it gave my mind a break from all the craziness and let the calm walk right in.
As far as the name, it was given to me by a few friends and it just seemed to take on a life of its own.
You have said that you do not consider yourself a great or even good writer. Why do you feel that way?
I am open and honest about everything. I do not hide the fact that I suffer from depression and other things. By lying, you not only hurt yourself, but you hurt others as well who maybe would like to do something like this to help ease their suffering. Do not lie, give hope.
I say openly that I am not the smartest man in town, and Iwelcome that because smart is really overrated. You spend most of your time thinking about nonsense that you never really cared about that much for in the first place. Take the proper steps to stop thinking for a bit and give your mind a chance to lay low and calm down. Many of us need that break. With mental illness, you need to take care of you.
Has the pandemic played a major part in your life?
I had COVID-19 last March and it was terrible. They call it a pandemic, but the truth is, in the world of mental illness, it is an epidemic. More people have become depressed for many reasons such as the lock downs, jobs, not knowing what the future holds and who to believe and not believe because we all know we are getting lied to. The problem is, who and what are they lying about and who do we trust and not trust especially with a media who looks you dead in the eyes and lies straight to your face.
People are losing their minds over this. Youth suicide is at an alarming rate. It has become un-controllable. So, imagine everyone is getting lied to. No one knows who to believe or what to believe,their stress level becomes so high for some, they take their own life. What happens if we ever prove that we were lied to. Should we make the liars accountable in countless ways.
Your very straight to the point about your views on different topics. Do you think that might turn some people off?
Maybe I am a bit more vocal at times,but the truth is, I have reached an age where I understand that no matter how helpful you are in life, no matter how nice you are to people, there will always be those who will find fault with you, judge you and not like you. It is just human nature. Personally, I do not get offended by that, I tend to look at it like this. For people to genuinely like me, they must first acquire a finer taste in their so-called personal judgment toward people. It is only when that takes place, will they understand the real me, and at that point, all will be OK. To me life is like a long bus ride and for those who like me, I hope we can enjoy the ride together and for those who don’t, my personal space is overcrowded anyway. No harm, no fowl, just get off my bus.
Besides poetry you are the host of The Coffee and Prayer Series. Can you tell us about that?
It is a simple podcast where I talk about several different topics that can range from kindness, compassion, love, friendship, and God. It is my way of trying to make a difference and it is also my own personal therapy to keep me on the straight and narrow. I enjoy it and get many nice messages from folks all over. So, it makes it worth-wild.
Does Doc Dalton have any hero’s in this world?
My dad, first and foremost. He was a walking, talking angel who lived on this planet. He would help anyone in need, and he did. The old saying that someone would give you their last dollar if you needed it. That was him. The best of the best and I miss him every day. My mom was another angel as well. Kind and compassionate. A good soul to say the least.
Two others that come to mind are Americana artist Ray Wylie Hubbard. He is one sick dude and I say that with a smile and with 100% respect. He does it his way and seems not to be held down by others. He is his own man and wears it well and I respect that. Anyone who can write a song called snake farm, is OK with me.
And there is Irish poet PatIngoldsby He write some stuff that is way out there and being I am a person who enjoys being way out there, I enjoy his words very much.
You say you are not a religious guy, but you are a God guy. How so?
Manmade religion is just that, manmade. I always feel they have a secrete motive which starts with the fire and brimstone messages. Spiritual leaders today are very outspoken and make it known that do not agree with each other’s teaching and say how the wrong messages are being delivered. Bottom-line, I can get to hell on my own and do not need any outside help to get there.
To be honest, there are many good ones, and I am lucky because I have a good Pastor who I trust. But when confusion sets in and you are not 100% sure who or what to believe, that is the time to sit down, fold your hands and Pray to God and ask him to step in and guide you. Besides, it is supposed to be a personal relationship anyway, right. So, make it personal and make it personal with Jesus.
What is on the horizon for the depressed poet, Doc Dalton?
Write more poetry. I have a book coming out in March called, Simply Compassion. I plan on staying not the smartest man in town. I like it that way and it took me a long time to understand it and accept it and continue that bus ride. Seriously, it is where I need to be right now.
Let me say thank you for your time and if anyone would like to learn more, where can they go.
They can go to my website at, www.DocDalton.com and everything is there? Thank you.