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Sunken Garden Poetry Festival at The Hill-Stead Museum

August 1 - August 16

Celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Sunken Garden Poetry Festival. This unique outdoor arts event located on the grounds of this National Historic Landmark in the heart of Farmington. The community cherishes this series of readings and music concerts in the informal outdoor setting of the Hill-Stead estate. Visitors can come early to tour the museum’s world-class Impressionist art collection, walk the trails, or attend the prelude conversations with headlining poets. Picnics are welcome and food and wine can be purchased from festival vendors. Guests bring their own chairs and blankets and relax among the flower beds in the historic Sunken Garden, surrounded by eight foot stone walls and the sounds of nature.

 

Wednesday, June 21st through Wednesday, August 16th

5 Mountain Road in Farmington

860.677.4787

 

Forgetfulness 
BY BILLY COLLINS
The name of the author is the first to go
followed obediently by the title, the plot,
the heartbreaking conclusion, the entire novel
which suddenly becomes one you have never read, never even heard of,as if, one by one, the memories you used to harbor
decided to retire to the southern hemisphere of the brain,
to a little fishing village where there are no phones.Long ago you kissed the names of the nine muses goodbye
and watched the quadratic equation pack its bag,
and even now as you memorize the order of the planets,

something else is slipping away, a state flower perhaps,
the address of an uncle, the capital of Paraguay.

Whatever it is you are struggling to remember,
it is not poised on the tip of your tongue
or even lurking in some obscure corner of your spleen.

It has floated away down a dark mythological river
whose name begins with an L as far as you can recall

well on your own way to oblivion where you will join those
who have even forgotten how to swim and how to ride a bicycle.

No wonder you rise in the middle of the night
to look up the date of a famous battle in a book on war.
No wonder the moon in the window seems to have drifted
out of a love poem that you used to know by heart.

Snow Day 
BY BILLY COLLINS
Today we woke up to a revolution of snow,
its white flag waving over everything,
the landscape vanished,
not a single mouse to punctuate the blankness,
and beyond these windowsthe government buildings smothered,
schools and libraries buried, the post office lost
under the noiseless drift,
the paths of trains softly blocked,
the world fallen under this falling.In a while, I will put on some boots
and step out like someone walking in water,
and the dog will porpoise through the drifts,
and I will shake a laden branch
sending a cold shower down on us both.But for now I am a willing prisoner in this house,
a sympathizer with the anarchic cause of snow.
I will make a pot of tea
and listen to the plastic radio on the counter,
as glad as anyone to hear the news

that the Kiddie Corner School is closed,
the Ding-Dong School, closed.
the All Aboard Children’s School, closed,
the Hi-Ho Nursery School, closed,
along with—some will be delighted to hear—

the Toadstool School, the Little School,
Little Sparrows Nursery School,
Little Stars Pre-School, Peas-and-Carrots Day School
the Tom Thumb Child Center, all closed,
and—clap your hands—the Peanuts Play School.

So this is where the children hide all day,
These are the nests where they letter and draw,
where they put on their bright miniature jackets,
all darting and climbing and sliding,
all but the few girls whispering by the fence.

And now I am listening hard
in the grandiose silence of the snow,
trying to hear what those three girls are plotting,
what riot is afoot,
which small queen is about to be brought down.

Details

Start:
August 1
End:
August 16
Website:
http://www.hillstead.org/2017-sunken-garden-poetry-festival/

Venue

Hill- Stead Museum
35 Mountain Road
Farmington, CT 06037 United States
+ Google Map
Website:
http://www.hillstead.org

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