Saturday, June 16, 2018

Charles Bane Jr.'s The Chapbook — A Father’s Pen

photo © Mark Butkus 2009
Beholding in wonderment its vantaged range.

I weep as I write my remembrance of the hour
when I and my now-lifeless son
played inside the panes of an imperishable vacuum.
Upwards we climbed the sheer towers of its scope
and beholding in wonderment its vantaged range,
stood enfranchised citizens of a creation everlasting,
unfolded in the vista of a sleeping star.

Thence, down we walked the old and rusted ways
of a penciled landscape, above whose trails a garden fared,
chaired in a traffic of its own engendering seed.
My dearest precious one.
My priceless, sweetening bloom.
Such was the separation of myself from my soul’s light that,
seeing his features through an imaginary lens
words chosen for my work would stay near a moment longer;
but of those rows and the vocabulary of their weighing stones,
is the labor of my canto.

I pray that in its meter’s brief life upon the page
each note will plunge upon its spot as rain upon the feeding deep,
and plumb the sense of fellow men.
Surveying their topography, I rode to town on business once,
and, in a coffee house at travel’s end, turned to see
in a smoky recess shunned by other patrons, two old sodomites.
One face had a slant, as when a falling shower makes circles of the dark.
Both had a dignity of their own design, but so frail was its preserve
that a clumsy step would be accompanied by a shatter.
Their display was bare of an overhanging span,
but for the roof they found below my ruby petal.


— Charles Bane, Jr.


There is no worse fate for a parent than to survive a child. A Father’s Pen tries to come to terms with that event. It is hoped that this poem by Charles Bane, Jr. offers support for fathers who grieve.

A Father’s Pen continues our serialization of Charles' 2011 volume of poetry, The Chapbook (Curbside Splendor). Part of a years-long journey, where we share and explore Charles' passion — his poetry — with you, our readers. 

Charles is also the author of Love Poems (Kelsay Books, 2014). His work has been described in the Huffington Post as "not only standing on the shoulders of giants, but shrinking them." He created the Meaning of Poetry series for The Gutenberg Project and is a current nominee as Poet Laureate of Florida. A career encompassing collection of poetry, The Ends Of The Earth was published in 2015.

We thank Charles for his continuing contributions and wish him well in the publishing of a collection of short fiction entitled, For Whom The Bell Tolls: The Sequel And Other Stories.