Poet and Agrarian Dreamer
Madeline Augusta Turner prefers to be covered in glitter. Her writing, research, and work are centered around soil, love in the face of the apocalypse, and place-based healing. Though she is currently living in Fes, Morocco, Madeline’s heart is always somewhere at the intersection of industrial decay and endless cornfields.
My life is built around words. The stories we tell of the physical and conceptual spaces we navigate tell us equally as much about who we are. I am a writer and poet because storytelling provides me with pathways by which I can contribute to the generation of new worlds. To this end, I see storytelling as a profound practice of resilience with the potential to change methods and mentalities. I tell stories to uplift the voices and narratives woven into both human and natural environments that are modeling strength in the face of the apocalypse. My work and research interests blossomed as a direct result of my childhood on a small farm nestled in the American Rust Belt's dairy industry. Growing up living and working on farms in one of the most degraded environments in the world, my theoretical and ecological perspectives are informed by lived experience. This duality has allowed me to act as a bridge between my friends in the fields and factories of the rural towns that raised me and those in the academic and eclectic worlds I navigate now. From September 2022 to December 2023, I am living in Morocco on a Fulbright research fellowship studying traditional agricultural cultivation methods as solutions to food insecurity in addition to their role in shaping political and cultural identity.
I have attended the Kenyon Writer's Workshop and received a Brooklyn Poets Fellowship. In 2022, my work was long-listed for Palette Poetry's Sappho Prize for Women Poets. Over the course of my undergraduate career, I was awarded the Smith College Elizabeth Babcock Poetry Prize for the best poem by an undergraduate, the Gertrude Posner Spencer Prize for excellence in creative nonfiction, and the Samuel Bowles Prize for a distinguished paper in anthropology.