Posted by: brunotarzia1 | May 7, 2009

Searching for Bruno Tarzia

I am trying to find information about a man – a poet from Bayonne, NJ.  As I have time I will post the information that I have and hopefully you can fill in the gaps.  Post your information here or mail it to Ray Brown, P.O. Box 40, Frenchtown, NJ 08825 – or fax to 408-351-9032 or email

Ray Brown

Posted by: Ray Brown | June 19, 2009

Poet Magazine – Cooper House Publishing

In 1990, Cooper House Publishing Inc. was located in El Reno, Oklahoma. The managing editor was Peggy Cooper. They published “Poet Magazine”.

In the fall of 1990 Poet Magazine published an article about Mr. Tarzia, together with his “Comparative Analytical Chart of the Forms of Poetry” which was provided as a free gift for subscribers.

In it Winter Issue 92-93, Poet Magazine published Bruno’s poem, “Our Lady of Good Counsel”, dedicated “To Sister Lucille De Stefano, these lines, of a scene before the statue of Our Lady of Good Counsel at Arena, Italy.”

I recently wrote to the address I had from 1990 to inquire about Poet Magazine’s files on Bruno and the letter was returned as undeliverable. I went on-line but cannot find any current information on Poet Magazine and cannot determine the present location for Cooper House Publishing.

Does anyone know anything about this Magazine and the publishing house? Please help if you do.

Thank you

Ray Brown

Posted by: Ray Brown | May 30, 2009

National Poetry Center involvement

Does anyone have information on the National Poetry Center which used to be located in Rockefeller Center in New York? I am trying to determine what happened to the organization and where their records might be located.

Bruno’s Chart was “heralded” by the center according to a Fall 1990 article in Poet Magazine. According to the same article Bruno joined the Center and was named a “Special Advisor”. At the time of Bruno’s involvement the Center was headed by Anita Browne. She established a “Poetry Week Fellowship” which I would also like to obtain information about.

I would like to read whatever records the National Poetry Center may have about Bruno Tarzia.

Posted by: Ray Brown | May 29, 2009

Bayonne Public Library Records

The Bayonne Public Library indicates it has some material on Mr. Tarzia:

“We do have some copies of Mr. Tarzia’s “Comparative Analytical Chart of the Forms of Poetry”.  We have a few copies of the poster and two copies of the blue cardboard covered edition with the pullout chart. …

 We also have a vertical file dedicated to Bruno Tarzia.  This file contains old newspaper clippings and some copies of his poetry….

I have been told by the head of The Bayonne Historical Society that there is a framed photo of Mr. Bruno Tarzia in our art workshop.  He has told me that there is a picture commemorating one of the anniversaries of The Bayonne Public Library…..”

I wonder what kind of man he was, and the impact that he had on the City, that his picture hangs in the public library.

I am going to make appointment to go down to the library and look through their records and archives – and view his picture on the wall.

Ray Brown

Posted by: Ray Brown | May 22, 2009

Bruno’s niece, Lisa, has found us

I was so pleased today to have Mr. Tarzia’s niece contact me.  I am so excited to have the opportunity to learn more about what appears to be a true Renaissance Man.  With the consent of the family and others that may have known of him, my search is not over.  I want to learn more and share more of this poet, this man, who touched me from a distance, 20 years ago.  If you have any information please share it with me.  Lisa Nicoll’s comment posted on this blog today. 

Mr. Brown,

I just found your blogs and response(s) to my Amazon query about Bruno Tarzia, my uncle, and am surprised and thrilled. Thank you for posting this!

Uncle Bruno passed away some years ago–I want to say 10, and can check w/ family members for the exact date–in Maryland, I believe, which is where he spent the last years of his life. I have to dbl check all of the facts with my grandmother (Bruno’s sister), who is alive and well and just a call away.

Uncle Bruno published a poem of mine (My first! I was 5.) in his “Poetry Corner” column of a New Jersey newspaper. I’m sure I have at least a few stories about him, and my mom, cousins, and grandmother certainly have more than I do.

Not sure if you know this, but he was born in Calabria, Italy, and formally schooled only to about the third or fifth grade, making his poetry chart (in my estimation) an even more phenomenal creation. He was the first of 13 children, and a hobby of his was photography. I have two photos of Jacques D’amboise in rehearsal w/ NYCB that Uncle Bruno took and gave to me as a birthday gift one year.

Like I said, Mr. Brown, I’ll be speaking with my grandmother and mother in the next couple of days, and will cull as much Bruno info as possible. Please feel free to email me or post any questions you may have.

I’m so glad you had a relationship with him, and want to thank you for posting that letter he wrote to you, which is quite a lovely example of his communication style and love of language.

Meanwhile, I can’t wait to see the chart again!

Thank you very much for your postings. I look forward to hearing from you.

Best Regards,
Lisa Nicoll

Posted by: Ray Brown | May 20, 2009

Comparative Analytical Chart of Forms of Poetry

I received my copy of the chart that Bruno’s niece is looking for on November 10, 1989. 

According to an Internet search, Bruno first published the chart in 1938. My copy is in a distinctive, dark blue, cardboard cover. The chart is nattily printed; pulls out from a four part fold, apparently glued to the inside of the back cover. The chart reflects that it was copyrighted in 1933. For something printed in 1938 it was done very professionally. 

Entitled “Comparative Analytical Chart of the Forms of Poetry”, it catalogues 50 forms of poetry beginning with “Alcaic Stanza – Ode” and ending with “Villanelle”. Before the time of Excel spreadsheets it showed 12 different columns, completed with precision, describing various characteristics of each style.

More detail will be provided about the chart in later posts. Accompanying my copy was a handwritten letter from Bruno. It reads:


The Poetry Club
35 East 39th Street
Bayonne, NJ 07002 


Dear Ray, 

    The poetry chart is sent under separate cover along with this, which is being written this a.m. (5:30!) — to give an example of my varying sleeping hours lately. An impromptu envelope for the chart was rigged from a larger last night and prepared last night for early mailing, but I thought something should be said that it was put together at a time when information on each “form” was available by hunting up separate volumes on versification not easily available. The Japanese “haiku” then was known (slighter) by the term used in the chart “hokku”. The dictionary carries both terms now. I think the Second World War poets who went to the Pacific, or writers who visited Japan later, were responsible for the change — to break from “tradition”. 

    The chart has been praised by two Pulitzer Prize Poets and used in NY University of Adults Study Catalog as a useful aid, and the South Carolina College for Women (Winthrop College) adopted it for several years. I do have numerous authorities who praised it highly. 

    Anyway, if you need help later on, let me know. 


PS — Avoided using the typewriter because of the early hours and there’s a baby downstairs from me.


I trust you are beginning to see why this gentleman fascinates me and I must discover him and what drove him to the places he visited- and how he thought.

Posted by: Ray Brown | May 8, 2009

Mr. Tarzia’s niece – Lisa N. – “L. Nicoll”

When searching the Internet for information, I came across the following post on  Lisa N. indicated she is Bruno’s niece.  If she would contact me I would appreciate it.  If you know her please ask her to contact me.  I have an original of the chart she is looking for.  (I will write about it in a post soon.)

Please help me with advice as to how to use the Amazon comment system.  I left 2 comments for her, but they did not appear, so I do not know whether they got sent to her, or whether they just disappeared.  Please leave me some advice as to how to use the system and I will write her again.

The post at AMAZON.COM  under the profile of L. Nicoll is:

“March 21, 2008

 I lost my one copy of Bruno Tarzia’s amazing poetic forms chart somewhere between college and now, and would love to find a copy. This chart is detailed, beautifully done, and extremely helpful for an English Literature major or any lover of poetry. If any person reading this has a copy (or several) or knows where to find one, please post here and let me know.

I should mention that Bruno Tarzia was my uncle, and so I grew up looking at this chart and consequently not valuing it half as much as I should have.

Thank you for any help! Lisa N.”

So help me find “Lisa N.” so I can learn more about her Uncle and share a copy of the chart with her.

My contact information is at the top  page 1 of the blog.
Ray Brown
Posted by: Ray Brown | May 8, 2009


In 1987, during a personal crisis, I began to write poetry. Since then, from time to time, when the mood struck me I would write on the back of napkins, on reports in a business meeting, on index cards, a little notebook and then at times with less distractions on a computer. During that time less than six people have read a portion of my work. Bruno Tarzia was one of those people.

When I first started to write in 1987, I applied to become a member of the New Jersey Poetry Society. Mr. Tarzia was on the membership committee. At that time, your work had to be read and meet certain standards, before you would be selected for membership.  

I was selected for membership and Mr. Tarzia began to communicate with me. In 1987 the only option was by mail. He wrote in longhand, and sometimes typed. He volunteered to read some of my poems critiqued them, and made suggestions for style and changes. We were going to meet and develop our new friendship and mutual interest. It meant so much to have an experienced poet read my work.  

Through my fault, not his, we never met and our communications ended. I have always regretted that.  

In November of 2008 I decided to share my work with the public. I had always wondered whether other people would enjoy and appreciate my poems — and whether they were any good. I had learned how to blog and thought this would be a good way to permanently record my work and get people’s reaction.  

My first thoughts were also to find Mr. Tarzia — and apologize — and take advantage of his touching commentary and helpful opinions and suggestions once again. I wondered whether he was still living.  

Someone from the New Jersey Poetry Society recently told me they believed he died while moving to either Virginia or Maryland in his elder years to live with family members. I would like to find out more about him — to understand what he was like as a man, and to understand his deep interest in poetry.  

If you have any information that would help, or can provide me with a lead, please post a comment, e-mail, fax, or write and help me in this search.  

My own poetry blog is at .

Thank you.  

Ray Brown

P.O. Box 40

Frenchtown, New Jersey 08825

fax: 408-351-9032