CHARLES DARLING began writing poetry in the late sixties, crafting extraordinary poems out of ordinary, everyday events. At the same time, he was teaching courses in literature and writing for Capital Community College in Hartford, Connecticut, and serving as the Webmaster of a highly regarded Internet grammar and usage hotline.
The images and moments that populate the poems in this first collection arise from ordinary events and the clutter of everyday life-Darling's Midwestern childhood, dogs riding in cars, balloons picked up for a bridal shower, watching his father's last haircut, the impermanence of granite mountains, and explaining things like roman numerals to his grandson Jayden over a series of months during Jayden's first year of life. All of these poems allow the commonplace facts of experience to take flight and remain aloft with the aid of Darling's ironic wit and thoughtful heart. Thus the discovery of crickets on the basement floor becomes a humorously religious experience, and driving across Connecticut on a dull, icy day with his sister's ashes in the back seat, accompanied by a recording of Mahler's Second Symphony, becomes a triumphant ride toward transcendent victory, light, and life.
In September 2004 Darling was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, an event that occasioned his retirement from teaching but did not stop him from writing some of his finest poetry in his final months. Unhappily, Charles Darling died on February 15, 2006.