Adele Gardner

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Adele's first poetry book, Dreaming of Days in Astophel (under her byline Lyn C. A. Gardner), is available in the Alban Lake Store.

Del and Adele

Del and Adele

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Please note that (c) copyright to all photographs on this page (except for two book covers and photo by Frederick H. Evans) is owned by Adele Gardner. Photos were created by Adele Gardner and/or are from her collection. Menu portrait on left shot by Daniel Michael Hegarty Sr. All rights reserved.

Adele's mystery writing group, Mystery by the Sea, the Southeastern Virginia Chapter of Sisters in Crime, helped produce the VIFM anthology series. Find the books, events, and more at Virginia Is for Mysteries.

Delbert & Adele Gardner are a father & daughter team of writers, poets, and scholars of William Morris, the Pre-Raphaelite poet and designer. Adele (Carolyn Adele Gardner) received her middle name as a play on her father's name, Del.

Dad loved all his children equally (and dearly). I simply happen to be the firstborn who is carrying on his traditions of writing, scholarship, editing, and publication. Our entire family loves his writing and carries on his love of jazz, the Baltimore Orioles, the Miami Dolphins, Keuka Lake, comedy, crooners, the Road pictures, Eldridge Park & carousels, a great sense of fun, being "young at heart," our family, and so much more. Welcome to the House of Del. We thank you for stopping by!

Let's have a writing session together! Tune in to some jazz at the 1920s Radio Network, open your briefcase, get your drafts from your manila folder, pull out a clean sheet, prime your red mechanical pencil, and let's get started!

Ever since I was tiny, I wanted to be a writer like my father. Dad read us poems and stories at the dinner table, including his own, often with great laughter. My parents met in one of my father's creative writing classes, and I attended writer's conferences as a toddler (where I met Madeleine L'Engle). I grew up in a house filled with talk of Dad's submissions and joy about his publications; the clatter of his big black manual typewriter up in Dad's study when I was small, and later Mom's electric typewriter buzzing through his manuscripts at speed; and times when Mom would encourage us children to give Dad quiet time to write--with his pipe on the porch at the lake, or after dinner at the big desk in our parents' room. I wrote my first "book" at age four, got serious about writing as my life's ambition at ten (even learning to type), and began submitting science fiction stories at fourteen, with Dad showing me the ropes of the submission process. As a teen, I could even follow Dad in a store, jotting in my notebook while crouching beside shelves or strolling down the aisle. Dad offered me valuable critiques and feedback throughout my life, his lessons always geared toward my age level. When I began attending graduate fiction workshops, he asked me to critique his own work, and we would have writing sessions together, sharing a smile or craft-related conversation across the table--at the yellow Formica dining room table, out back in lawn chairs, at the picnic table on Grandma's porch, or at the CNU Writer's Conference.

Adele Gardner Is Agent & Literary Executor for Delbert R. Gardner

With Dad featured on my websites since 2000, in 2008 I took on the role of Dad's agent, and we began collaborating; we also discussed and planned future collaborations. As I promised, I continue to act as his literary executor, and there will be more collaborations to follow! Please note that all of the works of Delbert R. Gardner continue to enjoy copyright protection, and that I act for his literary estate on behalf of my mother, Marilyn H. Gardner. (Delbert R. Gardner has no "orphan works.")

We had so much fun together. And we continue to do so! Love never dies.

I'm always thrilled when our work appears in print together. Here are some places where Dad and I have had our work published together, often as part of a Father & Daughter Special Feature. More about our joint efforts follow this list!

Father & Daughter Appearances Together

Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, Sun., June 28, 2015, in the "Poetry Review Father & Daughter Special Feature: Poems by Adele and Delbert R. Gardner."

Songs of Eretz Poetry E-Zine, Aug. 2014 first anniv. iss., as part of a Father & Daughter Special Feature.

Songs of Eretz Poetry E-Zine, Vol. 2, Iss. 2, No. 9, Nov. 2014, as part of a Father & Daughter Special Feature.

The 2016 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Poetry of 2015, Ed. Charles Christian, Science Fiction Poetry Association, 2016.

The 2015 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Poetry of 2014, Ed. Rich Ristow, Science Fiction Poetry Association in cooperation with Hadrosaur Productions, 2015.

The 2010 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Poetry of 2009, Ed. Jaime Lee Moyer, Science Fiction Poetry Association, 2010.

StarShipSofa No. 423, Kary English, Feb. 17, 2016, Poetry Planet No. 16: Animals & Creatures, hosted by Diane Severson.

Tales of the Talisman, Vol. 9, Iss. 3, Winter 2013/14.

  • “Persephone’s Dream” by Delbert R. Gardner
  • "Die Alone, the Demon Said" by Adele Gardner

Star*Line 33.4, July/Aug. 2010.

  • "To the Muse of Something" by Delbert R. Gardner
  • "Schrödinger's Catsitter" by Adele Gardner

Hazard Cat accepted these at the same time:

The 2009 Rhysling Anthology: The Best Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Poetry of 2008, Ed. Drew Morse, Science Fiction Poetry Association, 2009.

  • "Tammuz to Ishtar" by Delbert R. Gardner
  • "The Dispossessed" by Adele Gardner

Status Hat, Cities issue, Mar. 2011. Editor Meagan Dye included a special section titled "Destination Home" that featured Adele & Delbert R. Gardner. Though the journal is no longer online, the Gardner content is available here, and there's a brief post about it on the Status Hat Productions Facebook page: Poetry Moment: Destination Home, Mar. 9, 2011.

The Gardners and William Morris

Delbert R. Gardner earned his Ph.D. in English (Victorian literature) from the University of Rochester with a dissertation on William Morris. Following in her father's footsteps, Adele (Carolyn Adele Gardner) earned her M.A. in English Literature (Creative Writing and Victorian Literature) from Old Dominion University with a thesis on William Morris. Read on for their William Morris credits to date.

Dad introduced me to William Morris when I was 13; among the first things I read and loved by this fantastic poet were The Life and Death of Jason and The Defence of Guenevere, and Other Poems. From there Dad went on to introduce me to many other fabulous poets and writers. While Dad had always taken an interest in my writing and brought to me the love and joy of great fiction and poetry, I date our literary mentorship to this period.

One of the many things I love about the life and work of William Morris is his relationship with his daughter, May, who became his acolyte, working with him as a designer in the Firm of Morris & Co. (she became Director of the Embroidery Department) and joining him in Socialism. May Morris would later go on to act as protector and preserver of her father's works, editing the 24-volume set of The Collected Works of William Morris. Even before I became Dad's literary executor, I loved the parallel we shared with their close & artistic relationship.

In the summer of 2016, I made my first pilgrimage to the University of Rochester, River Campus Libraries: Rare Books, Special Collections and Preservation to see Dad's dissertation. The Rare Books & Special Collections Staff were so kind and helpful, especially Esther Arnold, who went above and beyond in her efforts to unite me with archival materials relating to Dad and William Morris. I can't wait till next summer, when I will return and view more of the Kelmscott Press books firsthand!

Note that the wallpaper for the current websites of Del & Adele is closely adapted from William Morris's designs; many of the titles on the site also use fonts created by William Morris, especially Golden.

Learn more about William Morris, the Kelmscott Press, the Arts & Crafts Movement, & the Pre-Raphaelites:
The William Morris Society in the United States
The Pre-Raphaelite Society
Pre-Raphaelite Sisterhood

Works on William Morris by Delbert R. Gardner

Works on William Morris by Adele Gardner

Below left: "Dove and Delbo" (c) by Adele Gardner (featuring Delbert R. Gardner and Adele's dove Fionnovar). Below right: "Adele Caticus" (c) by Adele Gardner (featuring Adele Gardner, Max [shoulder], and Cleo). Adele created these images on film & in the darkroom. See Photography & Art to learn where these photos have shown and to read an Artist's Statement about "Dove and Delbo."

Above & below: Delbert R. Gardner and Adele Gardner

More about Del & Adele

For more about Dad's approach to life, read the "Statement on Beauty" at the end of "New Wings for the Muse," Peacock Journal, Jan. 12, 2017.

For more about our literary relationship, see page 4 of “Openers: For the Love of Reading” by Lyn C. A. Gardner and Cy Dillon, Virginia Libraries, Vol. 54, No. 3-4, July/August/September-October/November/December 2008.

A biography of Dad & his cat in "Our Mother Tongue,"Hazard Cat, Feb. 9, 2011.

Adele talks about her connection with her father on the biography pages for Delbert R. Gardner and Adele Gardner.

At the end of the poem: Commentary by Adele Gardner on "Hollow Beats the Night" by Delbert R. Gardner, Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, Sun., June 28, 2015, in the "Poetry Review Father & Daughter Special Feature: Poems by Adele and Delbert R. Gardner."

At the end of the poem: Commentary by Adele Gardner in consultation with Marilyn H. Gardner on "'The More It Changes . . . '" by Delbert R. Gardner, Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, Sun., June 28, 2015, in the "Poetry Review Father & Daughter Special Feature: Poems by Adele and Delbert R. Gardner."

At the end of the poem: Commentary by Adele Gardner on "After Hearing Frost at Eleven" by Delbert R. Gardner, Songs of Eretz Poetry E-Zine, Vol. 2, Iss. 2, No. 9, Nov. 2014, as part of a Father & Daughter Special Feature.

At the end of the poem: Poet's Notes for "WWII Muscles" by Adele Gardner, Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, Sun., June 28, 2015, in the "Poetry Review Father & Daughter Special Feature: Poems by Adele and Delbert R. Gardner."

At the end of the poem: Poet's Notes for "Row Your Boat Ashore" by Adele Gardner, Songs of Eretz Poetry Review, Sun., June 28, 2015, in the "Poetry Review Father & Daughter Special Feature: Poems by Adele and Delbert R. Gardner."

The following site is no longer available online; however, the Gardner content is available here. This includes our personal statement in "Editor's Note Regarding Gardner Poetry" as part of "Destination Home," in Status Hat, Cities issue, March 2011, along with our bios and the poems "Refreshment from Beyond the City's Grasp" by Adele Gardner and "Scenes in an Airport" by Delbert R. Gardner. Though the journal is no longer online, here's a brief post about it on the Status Hat Productions Facebook page: Poetry Moment: Destination Home, Mar. 9, 2011.

Above: Adele Gardner as William Morris, RavenCon, "Dead Authors Society," 2009. Photo by Marc Nucup, from the collection of Adele Gardner.

Above: "Kelmscott Manor: In the Attics," platinum print by Frederick H. Evans, 1896.

Frederick H. Evans visited William Morris at Kelmscott Manor in 1896 and photographed twenty-seven views, many of them subjects suggested by the Pre-Raphaelite poet. When Morris died soon thereafter, Evans's photographs were published along with an article commemorating Morris's life and art. This particular image helped inspire my story of the same title ("Kelmscott Manor: In the Attics" by Adele Gardner). My father and mentor, Delbert R. Gardner, introduced me to Morris when I was 13; he himself authored both a book and dissertation on Morris, a tradition I carried on with my master's thesis.


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