Lewis P. Turco (born
May 2, 1934), is an American poet, teacher, and writer of fiction and non-fiction. Turco is an advocate for Formalist poetry (or New Formalism) in the United States.
Life and work
Turco took a keen interest in poetry as a teenager, and by the time he was a young adult, he had had work published.ref|earlyPublication After serving in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Hornet, Turco graduated from the
University of Connecticutin 1959 and completed an MA at the University of Iowain 1962 (at the Iowa Writers' Workshop). It was there that he cultivated his interest in Formalist poetry, and began — to use his words — collecting forms. Turco collected these forms in the " Book of Forms", published in the 1960s, a time when it would seem odd to do so since most poets were writing free verse.
Turco taught at
Fenn Collegein Cleveland and the State University of New Yorkat Oswego where he became Director of Writing Arts. He now resides in Mainewith his wife.
In 1992 Lewis Turco received a Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Alumni Association of the University of Connecticut. He was inducted into the Meriden, Connecticut, Hall of Fame in 1993, and in 1999 he received the John Ciardi Award for lifetime achievement in poetry sponsored by the National Italian American Foundation. In May 2000 he received an honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, from Ashland University in Ohio.
Among Turco's former students is
National Book Award-winning and two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist author Alice McDermott(BA, SUNY Oswego, 1975, NBA for "Charming Billy," 1998).
Turco's classification of rhymes
In his book "The New Book of Forms" (University Press of New England, 1986), Turco gives the following classification of rhymes:
# "End rhyme" full rhyme at line endings
# "Falling rhyme" (or "feminine rhyme") is rhyme for feminine endings with stress pattern / x, example: "falling" / "calling"
# "Light rhyme" example: "falling" / "ring" (Daleref|dale calls this "
# "Internal rhyme" rhymes line end with word in the middle of the same line
# "Linked rhyme" rhyme end of one line with beginning of next
# "Interlaced rhyme" rhymes middle of one line with middle of next line
# "Cross rhyme" rhymes ending of one line with middle of adjacent line
# "Head rhyme" rhymes syllables at the beginning of lines
# "Apocopated rhyme" breaks a word across a line-break; example: "morn- / -ing" / "born"
# "Enjambed rhyme" uses first sound of next line to make rhyming unit; example: "he / descended" / "seed")
# "single rhyme"
# "double rhyme"
# "triple rhyme"
# "compound rhyme" treats groups of words as though they were one word; example: "people call work" / "maid-of-all-work".
# "mosaic rhyme" is compound + normal; example: "shy lot" / "pilot"
# "trite rhyme" is the used of overused rhymes
# "rich rime, rime riche, false rhyme" example: "cyst" / "persist" / "insist"
# "consonance, slant-rhyme, off-rhyme, near-rhyme" allows similar sounds, example: "bridge" / "hedge" / "gouge" / "rage" / "rouge")
# "analyzed rhyme" example: "moon" / "divine" / "chide" / "brood"
# "wrenched rhyme" ... a pun ... example: "rhinestones" / "noses to their grindestones"
# "amphisbaenic rhyme" or "backward rhyme"; examples: "later" / "retail", or "stop" / "pots"
# "Lyon rime" ... word by word pailindrome structure of a stanza
# "sight rhyme" or "eye rhyme": example: "eight" / "sleight"
# "dialect rhyme" is rhyme that s true rhyme in a particular dialect
# "historical rhyme" is rhyme that was true rhyme in another historical period
# ... see
Peter Dale's classification of rhymes
*First Poems, Francestown: Golden Quill Press, 1960. (A selection of the Book Club for Poetry, 1960.)
*The Sketches of Lewis Turco and Livevil: A Mask, Cleveland: American Weave Press, 1962. (American Weave Chapbook Award, 1962.)
*Awaken, Bells Falling: Poems 1959-1967, Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1968.
*The Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics, New York: E. P. Dutton, 1968.
*The Literature of New York: A Selective Bibliography of Colonial and Native New York State Authors (monograph), Oneonta: New York State English Council, 1970.
*Creative Writing in Poetry (study guide), Albany: State University of New York, 1970.
*The Inhabitant, poems, with prints by Thom. Seawell, Northampton: Despa Press, 1970.
*Pocoangelini: A Fantography & Other Poems, Northampton: Despa Press, 1971.
*Poetry: An Introduction Through Writing (college text), Reston: Reston Publishing Co., 1973.
*The Weed Garden (chapbook), Orangeburg: Peaceweed Press, 1973.
*Freshman Composition and Literature (study guide), Albany: State University of New York, 1974.
*Courses in Lambents: Poems, (by "Wesli Court," pseud.), Oswego: Mathom Publishing Company, 1977.
*Curses and Laments (by "Wesli Court," pseud.), Stevens Point: Song Magazine, 1978.
*Murgatroyd and Mabel (by "Wesli Court," pseud.), with color illustrations by "Robert Michaels" (Robert Sullins), Oswego: Mathom Publishing Company, 1978.
*A Cage of Creatures (chapbook), Potsdam: Banjo Press, 1978.
*Seasons of the Blood (chapbook), Rochester: Mammoth Press, 1980.
*The Airs of Wales (chapbook, "Wesli Court," pseud.), Philadelphia: Poetry Newsletter of Temple University, 1981.
*American Still Lifes, Oswego: Mathom Publishing Company, 1981.
*The Compleat Melancholick, Minneapolis: The Bieler Press / University of California Press, 1985. (Chicago Book Clinic Exhibit Certificate of Award, 1986.) (Selection for inclusion in the National Endowment for the Arts' New American Writing Exhibits, International Book Fairs of Frankfurt and Liber,1986.)
*Visions and Revisions of American Poetry (criticism), Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 1986.
*A Maze of Monsters, Poems (chapbook), Livingston: Livingston University Press, 1986.
*The New Book of Forms, Hanover: University Press of New England, 1986.
*The Fog: Chamber Opera in One Act (score), music by
Walter Hekster, libretto by Lewis Turco, Amsterdam: Donemus, 1987.
*The Shifting Web: New and Selected Poems, Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 1989.
*Dialogue: A Socratic Dialogue on the Art of Writing Dialogue in Fiction, Cincinnati: Writer's Digest Books, 1989.
**British edition, London: Robinson Publishing, 1991.
**Italian edition, Il Dialogo, tr. Silvia Biasi, Milano: Casa Editrice Nord, 1992.
*A Family Album (chapbook), Eugene: Silverfish Review, 1990. (Silverfish Review Chapbook Award, 1989.)
*The Public Poet, Five Lectures on the Art and Craft of Poetry, Ashland: Ashland University Poetry Press, 1991.
*Murmurs in the Walls (chapbook), Oklahoma City: Cooper House, 1992. (Cooper House Chapbook Award, 1990.)
*Emily Dickinson, Woman of Letters, Albany: State University of New York Press, 1993.
*Legends of the Mists (chapbook), Kew Gardens: New Spirit Press, 1993.
*How to Write a Mi££ion (with
Ansen Dibelland Orson Scott Card) London: Robinson Publishing, 1995.
*Bordello (portfolio), poems, with prints by George O'Connell, Oswego: Grey Heron / Mathom, 1996.
*Shaking the Family Tree A Remembrance (monograph), West Lafayette: VIA Folios / Bordighera, 1998.
*A Book of Fears, Poems, with Italian Translations by Joseph Alessia, West Lafayette: Bordighera, 1998. (First Annual Bordighera Bi-Lingual Poetry Award of the Sonia Raiziss-Giop Foundation.)
*The Life and Poetry of Manoah Bodman, Bard of the Berkshires, Lanham: University Press of America, 1999.
*The Book of Literary Terms: The Genres of Fiction, Drama, Nonfiction, Literary Criticism and Scholarship, Hanover: University Press of New England, 1999. (Choice Outstanding Academic Title, 2000.)
*The Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics, Third edition, University Press of New England, 2000.
*The Green Maces of Autumn: Voices in an Old Maine House, Dresden: Mathom Bookshop, 2002.
*The Book of Dialogue, How to Write Effective Conversation in Fiction, Screenplays, Drama, and Poetry, Hanover: University Press of New England, 2004.
*A Sheaf of Leaves: Literary Memoirs, Scottsdale: Star Cloud Press, 2004.
*The Collected Lyrics of / Wesli Court, 1953-2004, Scottsdale: Star Cloud Press, 2004.
# Turco, L. "A Sheaf of Leaves: Literary Memoirs," Star Cloud Press, 2005. ISBN 0965183564
# Turco, L. "A Sheaf of Leaves: Literary Memoirs," Star Cloud Press, 2005. ISBN 0965183564
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