C. E. Chaffin



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Craig Erickson (C. E. Chaffin M.D. FAAFP) has been composing songs and poems since the age of five. He has published two books and edited another: "Elementary" (Poems; Mellen Press 1997); "The Best of the Melic Review" (Anthology; Melic Press 2001); and "Unexpected Light" (Diminuendo Press 2008). He has written many more but resisted the ambition to publish, as of yet, "In Search of the Spirit" (an autobiographical-theological exploration from 1995); "The Eric Chronicles" (1996; short stories about a boy growing up in LA in the 60s); "The Brat" (1998; a play about the consequences of permissive parents raising a ‘bad seed’); "Positively Bud and Other Stories" (2000); "Collected Columns" (2004); "Collected Criticism" (2005); and "T. S. Eliot, the Major Poems: Dissociation and Incarnation" (2006). If any publisher itches to examine any of these unpublished works, please let him scratch. In addition, his songs are available for downloading at his SoundClick site.

Due to health problems Dr. Chaffin was forced to go on disability from his practice as a family doctor in 1996. (His practice included much psychiatry, as he finished nearly three years of training in psychiatry before going back to general practice in 1983.)

Worldly honors include Outstanding Scholar in middle school in 1968; an AFS scholarship to Germany in 1971; nomination for the Outstanding Student Award at Goldenwest College in 1972, where he also helped edit "The Goldenwest Literary Magazine," later "Carrion." Matriculating to UCLA, he graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, also winning the Edward Niles Hooker Award for the most outstanding honors student in English, although not enrolled in the honors program. In medical school he won the New York Life Scholarship twice (1977 and 1978), as well as the Chauncey and Elizabeth Leake Award for the best essay in humanities and medicine (1978). He graduated from medical school in three years. In psychiatric training through MSU he was nominated for the Falk Fellowship. He was the featured speaker for the California Physician’s Assistant Convention in 1992 as well as a speaker and trainer of moderators for the Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association for many years (now DBSA, Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance). He won the top award for best health care quality in the Inland Empire from FHP as medical director of the San Gabriel Valley Medical Group in 1994 and became a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians that same year. In his second career as a writer he has won one poetry contest through Desert Moon Review and been nominated for a Pushcart by Rose and Thorn for the poem, "At the Inverted Fountain at UCLA." He has been the featured poet in over twenty magazines and continues to publish, both on the net and in print, as well as blog when it fancies him.

He is a Classicist in art, a Christian anarchist in politics, and a Lutheran in religion (though he attends a Catholic church). He is the proud father of three daughters, a stepson and a grandson. His eldest daughter, Rachel, unfortunately passed in 2007, but he considers her no less with him than those still walking the earth.

On August 23rd, 2010, he was baptized in the Holy Spirit, and, after 39 years of wandering in the desert of Christian faith, he was finally welcomed to the oasis, where he expects to spend the rest of his days. Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!

Reviews of Unexpected Light