The people we meet: a poet-philosopher who writes on scraps of paper

The poet, philosopher and actor Michael Bernard Loggins does not have a cell phone number or email because he “wants to participate in life”.

Instead, he carries pens and markers with him as he takes the bus around town to his favorite places: Adobe Books, the punk record store run by volunteers at Thrillhouse Records and McDonald’s. In all of these places, he hangs out and writes notes for people on little sheets of paper. He also writes in his notebook and philosopher with his entourage: “What is your greatest fear?” he sometimes asks.

Turns out he has a book on the subject. And it’s called “Fear of your life”. The book, which gained popularity after being picked up by NPR This American life, describes over 180 fears of Loggins, including “fear of toys that arises on its own without anyone touching it”, “fear of being lost” and “fear of authority and punishment “.

Loggins was born and raised in San Francisco and raised in a family of nine in a housing project in the Western Addition. His childhood was “half bad half good,” he says.

At 6, he started writing to express his emotions and pent-up anger at his siblings who he says made fun of him.

Loggins, now 60, ended up working for many years at Creativity Explored, an arts program for adults with disabilities. He has now published two books: “Fears of Your Life” and “Imaginationally”, an illustrated dictionary of words he invented. During his interview, he came up with the word “Foundable” which, according to him, means moments of fun and quality that parents spend with their children. “

Loggins describes himself as a black African American; a good, honest and cheerful person. For him, “life is a mix of nuts, raspberries, cranberries, almonds and cookies, and bananas and pears if you think of it that way. Life is a mixture of different kinds of categories. ”

Adobe Books member Heather Holt said during the pandemic they were all worried about Michael. The store was closed for three months and they had no way of contacting it. But eventually it happened. “It was good again,” she said.

“Michael, you’re prolific,” Holt told him, as she sorted through the hundreds of sheets of paper he’d left at Adobe Books with notes on them, some in black and some in red ink. “It was her red period,” she explained, stopping on a note that read in part:

“LIFE IS MUCH HARDER THAN IT ALREADY IS. LET LIFE EASIER. “

Another read: “COVID 19 IS SUCH A VERY UNRELIABLE AND FALSE CONCEPT and so much of a SCREW-UP.”

Michael Bernard Loggins books can be purchased at your local bookstore or on the artist page on Creativity Explored.

Michael Bernard Loggins seated at Adobe Books. One of his notes read in part “When you’re literary think anything = DEEP IN MUCH DEEPER CONVERSATIONS – How much deeper do we try to go? … ”Photo of Clara-Sophia Daly.

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