We Did Not Fear The Father

Overview

We Did Not Fear The Father: New & Selected Poems contains the best of forty years of Charles Fort. Ranging easily through a dizzying array of forms—sonnets, villanelles, prose poems, sestinas, elegies, blank verse, haiku, and modular poems, for starters—Charles Fort here demonstrates, unequivocally, that he is a master of his craft. By turns surreal, tender, terrifying, absurd, and soulful, Fort’s work churns with passionate, forceful expression. 

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Overview

We Did Not Fear The Father: New & Selected Poems contains the best of forty years of Charles Fort. Ranging easily through a dizzying array of forms—sonnets, villanelles, prose poems, sestinas, elegies, blank verse, haiku, and modular poems, for starters—Charles Fort here demonstrates, unequivocally, that he is a master of his craft. By turns surreal, tender, terrifying, absurd, and soulful, Fort’s work churns with passionate, forceful expression. 

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“In his poem entitled ‘Race War,’ Charles Fort concludes that ‘earth is not sufficient and earth is our only companion.’ But here is a poet who can weave magic out of that bleak fact. In We Did Not Fear the Father, I am made aware of the great blues tradition not only in American music but also in American culture: Fort is one of those ingenious improvisers who can take what little the world leaves him and transform it into tunefulness, forever staying ahead of all that would destroy him in realms both human and natural. Whether meditating on his wife’s tragic death, on the innocence of his sleeping child, on the sufferings of his brother, or whatever else, this writer’s way with rhythms and cadences, his simply astonishing command of forms (from prose poem to villanelle to free verse, blank verse and haiku), his plain greatness of heart: all these remind us that to the eye that would seek it and to the voice that would articulate it, beauty is an abiding thing. Charles Fort’s readers should rejoice once again to have his testimony to that glorious truth.”
—Sydney Lea, Poet Laureate of Vermont

We Did Not Fear the Father: New and Selected Poems by Charles Fort is a powerful, sometimes an overwhelming, collection. It boils with passion in its observations about social justice; it murmurs its intimate but respectful love poems, and it weeps frankly and openly in the heart-tearing elegies. Every poem, every line, is charged with feeling.
But these are not dithyrambic outpourings. There is a startling abundance of formal usages. Surrealism is employed for the musical violence with which it can color metaphors and there are jazz-rock-blues rhythms behind many of the phrasings. But there are also more traditional forms and variations, villanelles, modular poems in which lines and phrases can be transposed from one place to another so that the meanings of words, sentences, and even of rhythms change, and there are poems that build upon the words of other poets like Tennyson and Dickinson. Here is an amazing array of forms, both traditional and experimental, and these forms are forcefully expressive; they are not mere showpieces.
I have known and admired Mr. Fort’s poems for some decades now, but much of the work here is new to me. I have been profoundly impressed—and moved.”
—Fred Chappell

"…Consistently interesting—often luminous poetry."
The New York Times Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781597091725
  • Publisher: Red Hen Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/2012
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles Fort is a visiting professor in creating writing at Oklahoma State University. His books include The Town Clock Burning (Carnegie Mellon University Press), Mrs. Belladonna’s Supper Club Waltz: New and Selected Prose Poems (Backwaters Press) Darvil (St. Andrews Press) and Frankenstein Was A Negro (Loganhouse Press). Fort’s poems have appeared in journals, periodicals, and anthologies such as The Best American Poetry 2003, The Best American Poetry 2000, Best of Prose Poem International, The American Poetry Review, Georgia Review, and The Carnegie Mellon Anthology of Poetry. He has received a literary award from the Poetry Society of America, an Open Voice Award from The Writer’s Voice (judged by Grace Paley), the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize (judged by Fred Chappell), and The Mary Carolyn Davis Memorial Award. A past MacDowell fellow, Fort is currently at work on a novel: The Last Black Hippie From Connecticut.

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