[From the introduction to The Fish Jumps Out of the Moon]
Like the Japanese masters, Charles had an expressly non-theistic worldview. He had no time for a “too-small god.” Those who knew him saw him as a naturally “spiritual” person. Loved ones and casual acquaintances commonly described him as the most generous, patient, and persistently joyful person they had ever known. Charles found rich pleasure in providing joyful experiences for others, most often by helping them see a bit of Nature’s beauty or drama in the park. He spent long days in the spring at the “hawk bench” near the model boat pond on the park’s east side. He reveled in bringing the famous nesting Red-tailed Hawks of 5th Avenue to the attention of dozens of passersby, employing his considerable knowledge and eloquence to engage and amaze. This exuberance is evident in Charles’s writing and he made gifts of his haiku and photos to commemorate special, common experiences.
Charles delighted in bringing his Iowa roots [and our family's history] into shared study of urban nature. It was part of his infectious charm.
planted next to the back door
thinning tiny carrots
while lying between the rows
my father loved you too
[From the body of The Fish Jumps Out of the Moon]
paints so beautifully
watching the dance
a spider song