Middlebury College president Patton to read her poetry
MIDDLEBURY — Laurie Patton, president of Middlebury College, will read from her latest poetry collection, “House Crossing,” on Sunday, Dec. 16, 4:30 p.m., at The Vermont Book Shop in downtown Middlebury. The afternoon will include the reading, a discussion period and a book signing. Light refreshments will be served. Free and open to the public.
“House Crossing” is a book of 32 poems about where we live or, more properly, dwell, with each poem entitled by a different attribute of domestic architecture as it is commonly known: cupola, eaves, attic, beams, etc. The instigation for this poetic cycle is Gaston Bachelard’s “The Poetics of Space,” with this collection an homage to that classic phenomenological analysis. As she writes in her introduction, “House Crossing” arose as “a straightforward observation about the endurance of Bachelard’s work: if a poetics is good enough, and I believe Bachelard’s is, then it does not only comment on poetry, but can give rise to poetry as well.”
Patton is the 17th president of Middlebury and the first woman to lead the institution in its 218-year history. She is a leading authority on South Asian history and culture, and the author or editor of 11 books in these fields. She has also translated the ancient Hindu text, “The Bhagavad Gita,” for Penguin Classics Series, and is the author of three books of poetry — with “House Crossing” being the most recent.