There's a tradition at The Frost Place, located in Franconia, NH, that the person chosen to be resident poet each summer (live in Robert Frost's home, complete with modest stipend) should be about at the same career point of Frost when he arrived there in 1915: published some, but not yet well known, and ready to benefit seriously from time spent there.
That's why you probably don't yet know the name of poet Robert (Rob) Farnsworth, yet he's both the resident poet and about to offer a reading at the St. Johnsbury Athenaeum, St. Johnsbury, Vermont, at the highly distinguished poetry series there. He'll share the podium with Frost Place director Jim Schley on Tuesday July 25. The reading starts at 7:30; come early, as seating is limited, and dress for a bit of heat -- the room is not well ventilated. But the sound system is superb and the poetry, based on a bit I heard from Rob at the start of July, will be worth every droplet of sweat and minute of arranging to be there.
Other poetry events coming up: Kingdom Books is hosting a tea on Tuesday July 25 at 4 p.m. to honor poet Rachel Hadas and her new book THE RIVER OF FORGETFULNESS (we'll post a review on the web site this weekend). Then on July 30 the Frost Place begins its week-long Festival of Poetry, featuring evening public readings by Lynn Emanuel, Carl Philips, Kimiko Hahn, Tony Hoagland, Jane Hirshfield, and of course Robert Farnsworth (details on the web site www.frostplace.org).
Major excitement erupts August 2 at the aforementioned St. Johnsbury Athenaeum (1171 Main St., St. J; 802-748-8291) with the summer series finale by Galway Kinnell, who'll read from STRONG IS YOUR HOLD, his impressive new collection reaching publication in September. He read some draft poems from the collection at Kingdom Books last winter; this is a post-9/11 work, and I can hardly wait to have the finished copy in hand.