Born: April 06 1937 in New York City, New York, USA
Resides: North Haven, Connecticut, USA
E-mail: sforgesryan (at) gmail (dot) com
Born to Italian and German parents in New York, NY and raised on the Jersey Shore, Sylvia Forges-Ryan received Bachelor of Arts and Masters Degrees in English Literature from Bucknell University as well as a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies, with a concentration in poetry, from Wesleyan University. In 2006 she was awarded a Summer Literary Seminar fellowship to study poetry in St. Petersburg, Russia. Winner of numerous awards for poetry in both Japanese and longer forms, her work has been translated into many languages. She has been invited to teach classes and give haiku workshops in a variety of venues, including Harvard University (2004-2006), the Freshwater Poetry Festival, Asnuntuck Community College (2003), The Insight Meditation Center, Barre, Massachusetts (2003), The New York Meditation Society, Manhattan (2003 and 2007), Writers on the Sound, Madison, Connecticut (2006), and The Unitarian Society of Greater New Haven (2008). She has also given poetry readings at the Yale Bookstore, Barnes & Noble, Borders, and Busboys and Poets, and was a four-time featured poetry guest on Connecticut Public Radio. Invited to speak at numerous conferences, she was the featured poet at the 2000 Women's Creativity Conference at Quinnipiac University; at the World Haiku Festival in 2003 in Leuwarten, Holland; at the 2003 Haiku North America Conference in New York, NY; and at the Torii Associazione Culturale in Rome, Italy (2006). She was also the 2008 Featured Poet Online for the Italian Americana Journal, and the guest speaker in 2009 for the Center for Independent Study, Whitney Humanities Center, at Yale University. From 1991 through 1993 she was the Editor of Frogpond, the international journal of the Haiku Society of America.
Awards and Other Honors: To kick off 2012 National Poetry Month, The New Haven Register published a feature story about Sylvia and created a video of her reading some of her haiku [use search engine to find both online]. Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace selected for inclusion in the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale Collection of American Literature, Yale University Library (2011); Finalist, Kusamakura Haiku Competition (2010); Finalist, Penumbra Haiku Contest (2009); First Prize, Key West Robert Frost Haiku Contest (2008); First Prize, Ukiah Haiku Festival [judged by Jane Reichhold] (2008); Finalist, Kusamakura Haiku Competition (2008); Commended, White Lotus Haiku Competition (2008); Honorable Mention, San Francisco International Tanka Contest (2007); Second Prize, Thomas Merton Prize for Poetry [judged by Coleman Barks] (2007); Fellowship, Summer Literary Seminars Poetry Contest [judged by Robert Hass, to study poetry for 2 weeks in St. Petersburg, Russia] (2006); International Merit Award, Atlanta Review Poetry Contest (2006); First, Second, and Third Prizes, Italian-American Historical Society of Connecticut Poetry Contest [judged by Vivian Shipley] (2005); Grand Prix Poetry Prize, Atomic Bomb Memorial Committee, Kyoto, Japan (2005); Honorable Mention, New Millennium Writings Contest, Poetry (2005); Poetry Finalist, Dogwood Review [judged by A.E. Stallings] (2004: Finalist, Connecticut Poetry Festival Competition [judged by Charles Rafferty] (2003); First Prize, R.H.Blyth Award, World Haiku Society (2003); Second and Third Prizes, Americas Review Poetry Contest [judged by Jane Hirshfield] (2003); Finalist, New Millennium Twentieth Century Poetry Writing Prize (2000); Finalist, Comstock Review Poetry Contest [judged by Stephen Dobyns] (2000); Honorable Mention, Newburyport Art Association Poetry Contest (2000); Second Prize, Southern Connecticut University Poetry Contest [judged by Kathleen Halme] (1999); Finalist, Pacific Echo Poetry (1999); International Merit Award, Atlanta Review Poetry Contest (1999); Honorable Mention, Writers Digest Poetry Contest [for both Rhyming and Non-Rhyming Poetry] (1997); First Prize, Harold G. Henderson Award, Haiku Society of America (1993); Museum of Haiku Literature Award (Tokyo, 1989); Finalist, Japan Airlines Haiku Contest (1988); Second Prize, Mainichi Times International Haiku Contest, (Tokyo, 1987); First Prize, Mainichi Times International Haiku Contest (Tokyo, 1986). Her work as appeared in many journals, books, and other publications, worldwide, including: Anthologies: Essential Love: Poems about Mothers and Fathers, Daughters and Sons; The Unitarian Universalist Poets: A Contemporary Survey; Prayers to Protest; inside the mirror: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku2005; Haiku World: An International Poetry Almanac; Haiku Moment; Haiku: A Poet's Guide; Met on the Road: A Transcontinental Journal; A Haiku Path; Fan; Brocade of Leaves; Dreams Wander; Loose Change; Walking the Same Path; Crinkled Sunshine; Light and Shadow; From a Kind Neighbor; Voices and Echoes; A Solitary Leaf; Bits of Itself; When Butterflies Come; One Breath; Sixty Sunflowers; Favorite Haiku; World Haiku Review; Baseball Haiku; Lanterns: A Firefly Anthology; Seed Packets; Dandelion Clocks; Among the Lilies; The Merton Seasonal; Timepieces; Take Five: Best Contemporary Tanka of 2008; A Travel-Worn Satchel; The Pebbled Shore; and Catzilla!. Journals, Magazines, and Newspapers: Dogwood Review; Americas Review; Pyramid Review of Arts and Literature; UU World; Colere; Passager; HalfTones; Connecticut River Review; Sensations Magazine; Voiceprint; New Haven ARTS; Tricycle; Shambala Sun; Insight; Inquiring Mind; Frogpond; Modern Haiku; Wind Chimes; Brussels Sprout; The Nor'Easter; Tundra; Burning Bush Books; Haiga Online; Seasons Greetings; Ribbons; Simply Haiku; Mariposa; White Lotus; ForeWord; The Yale Anglers' Journal; Poetry Nippon (Japan); New Cicada (Canada); Albatros (Romania); Hermitage (Romania); Agora (Romania); Shell (Yugoslavia); Sparrow (Croatia); Ko (Japan); Inkstone (Canada); Lishanu (Ireland); Shamrock Haiku Journal (Ireland); Haiku Calendar (England); World Haiku Review (Japan); Mainichi Times (Japan); and The Daily Yomiuri (Japan).
Books Published: Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace. A book of Forges-Ryan's haiku poems with commentary by her husband, Edward Ryan. Published in Tokyo and London by Kodansha International, hardcover, 2002; Russian hardcover edition published in 2003 by Sophia Press, Kiev, Ukraine; paperback edition published in 2006 by Apocryphile Press, Berkeley, CA.
Credits: "Long ago" - Haiku World: An International Poetry Almanac [by William J. Higginson] (Tokyo: Kodansha International, 1996); "Spring rain" - Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace (Apocryphile Press, Berkeley, CA, 2006); "Among these lilies" - Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace (Apocryphile Press, Berkeley, CA, 2006); "Scattering his ashes" - First Prize, Harold G. Henderson Award (1993); Frogpond XVI:2 (1993); "Breaking off an icicle" - Modern Haiku 34:1 (2003); Haiku: A Poet's Guide [by Lee Gurga] (Modern Haiku Press, 2003); "A soldier's headstone" - First Prize, Ukiah Festival (2008).