The Gathering of the Elders
By Wesli Court
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Soft cover ISBN: 978-1-932842-43-2
Publisher: Star Cloud Press
Date of Publication: September 2010
Page Count: 114
'Wesli Court' is the anagram pen-name under which Lewis Turco writes his traditionally formal poems.
"This major collection by the astonishing Wesli Court is an event calculated to shiver all literary seismographs. Readers addicted to poetry, but weary of ill-made poems, can latch on to it with joy. Aspiring poets can seize it as a handbook of models, learning how to write anything from an ode to a sonnenizio, from an epigram to a blues epilogue. While often striking a wistful, wintery tone of hail-and-farewell, there are notes of infectious cheer and some genuine surprises — even a poem to fulfill an unused title that Wallace Stevens left lying idle. With unique skill, Court shows us what a truly good metrical poem used to be, could be, and (in his able hands) still is."
– X. J. Kennedy
"It's an increasingly rare pleasure to read poems about the real world in language as clear as it is lyrical, wth deep roots in the past and illuminated by careful rhyme."
– Miller Williams
"The miraculous thing about all these poems is the way they avoid sentimentality and the temptation to reinvent the past, preferring, instead, a difficult blend of affection and detachment, honesty and regret."
– Rhina P. Espaillat.
Other Books by the Author:
The Collected Lyrics of Lewis Turco / Wesli Court, 1953-2004
The Airs of Wales, 1981
Curses and Laments, 1978
Murgatroyd and Mabel, 1978
Courses in Lambents: Poems, 1977
About Lewis Turco:
Lewis Turco, Professor Emeritus of English Writing Arts, is perhaps the most widely respected poet-scholar in the United States. He took his B.A. from the University of Connecticut in 1959 and his M.A. from the University of Iowa in 1962. In 2000, he received an honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, from Ashland University in Ohio.
Founding Director of the Cleveland State University Poetry Center (1962) and the Program in Writing Arts at the State University of New York at Oswego (1968) before his retirement in 1996, he was chosen to write the major essay on "Poetry" - as well as a dozen other entries - for the Encyclopedia of American Literature, and he was himself included in it as a biographee. His poems, essays, stories and plays have appeared in most of the major literary periodicals over the past half-century, and in over one hundred books and anthologies.
Lewis Turco's classic The Book of Forms: A Handbook of Poetics has been called "the poet's Bible" since its original publication in 1968, through three editions and many printings. A companion volume, The Book of Literary Terms, The Genres of Fiction, Drama, Nonfiction, Literary Criticism and Scholarship, received a Choice award as an "Outstanding Academic Book" for the year 2000. A third book in the series, The Book of Dialogue, appeared in 2004. His first book of criticism, Visions and Revisions of American Poetry, won the Melville Cane Award of the Poetry Society of America in 1986, and his A Book of Fears: Poems, with Italian translations by Joseph Alessia, won the first annual Bordighera Bilingual Poetry Prize in 1998. Poems in his book of poetry, The Green Maces of Autumn: Voices in an Old Maine House (2002) won both the Silverfish Review Chapbook Award for 1989, and the Cooper House Chapbook Competition for 1990. In 1999, Professor Turco received the John Ciardi Award for lifetime achievement in poetry sponsored by the periodical Italian Americana and the National Italian American Foundation.
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