- Series: Via Folios
- Paperback: 102 pages
- Publisher: Bordighera Press (June 1, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1599540983
- ISBN-13: 978-1599540986
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.2 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,791,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Hero Enkidu (Via Folios)
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About the Author
Lewis Putnam Turco is a prolific author of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. He is the founder of the Cleveland State University Poetry Center, and the creative writing program at the State University of New York College at Oswego. Turco's first book of criticism, Visions and Revisions of American Poetry, won the Melville Cane Award of the Poetry Society of America, and his A BOOK OF FEARS: POEMS, with Italian translations by Joseph Alessia, won the first annual Bordighera Poetry Prize. He is also the author of three additional titles published by Bordighera Press: SHAKING THE FAMILY TREE: A REMEMBRANCE (1998), LA FAMIGLIA: THE FAMILY (2009), and THE HERO ENKIDU (2015). Turco received the John Ciardi Award for lifetime achievement in poetry.
Top customer reviews
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Gilgamesh has heretofore been the hero, the epic's central figure.
The story's emphasis has of course been on the semi-divine king, over the centuries in various renderings.
What Lewis Turco does infuses the old tale with warm new energy by placing the emphasis on Enkidu, the wholly mortal and vulnerable companion to the king. In the course of the tale, Enkidu grows: from the innocent playmate of the animals, through experience, to become a seasoned and trusted warrior and leader. When Gilgamesh is set on destroying the ogre Humbaba, Enkidu advises him against it, but takes the dangerous lead position when they undertake the enterprise. The elders advise Gilgamesh:
be in the van
And you will be safe
Shamash has sworn.
Using the Anglo-Saxon alliterative verse form, Turco gives the tale the feel of antiquity, but a fresh antiquity, not that of Homer or the Bible. The story races along—it never lags--and that speed is due in part to the hemistitch line pattern. Much of the delight of the rest is due to the splendid diction, the exacting choices, of a peerless poet.
And forth they marched
together, the heroes
And their warrior army
to find the spot
Whre Humbaba dwelt
in the Cedar Forest
where Enkidu had been born ...
You were absolutely correct in your prediction: I LOVE all you have done with this ancient story and you have certainly revitalized it for all future readers. The accolades are well deserved. Congratulations and best wishes.