Poets Edward Hirsch, Clare Rossini At Sunken Garden

Special To The Courant
This week's poetry events include Sunken Garden and an open-mic at Hartford public library

The Sunken Garden Poetry Festival on the grounds of Hill-Stead Museum, 35 Main St., Farmington, continues Wednesday, July 20, with a program by poets Edward Hirsch and Clare Rossini.

Hirsch, a much-praised poet, is the author of eight collections. His first, "For the Sleepwalkers" (1981), won the Delmore Schwartz Memorial Award and the Lavan Younger Poets Award from the Academy of American Poets. His second collection, "Wild Gratitude" (1986), won the National Book Critics Award.

Rossini, an artist-in-residence at Trinity College, has published three collections, most recently "Lingo", and her work has appeared widely in literary journals and anthologies.

The gates will open at 4:30 p.m., followed by a 5 p.m. Prelude conversation with Hirsch; a reading by Rossini at 6 p.m.; music by the Lords of Liechtenstein, a quirky folk music duo, at 6:30 p.m. and Hirsch's reading at 7:15 p.m. Guests must bring their own seating and can bring food and beverages or purchase them at the festival. Admission: $12 on-line; $15 at the gate; free for ages 18 or younger. Parking is free.

On Thursday, July 21, at 10 a.m., Hirsch will lead a workshop whose participants will create poems in response to works by selected Eastern European poets. The cost is $75 ($45 for students). Tickets and information: or 860-677-4787, ext.111.

Monagan In Tolland

Charles Monagan, a former editor of Connecticut magazine, will give a free talk about his new historical novel, "Carrie Welton" (Penmore Press, $19.50), on Sunday, July 17, at 1 p.m., at the Old Tolland County Jail and Museum, 52 Tolland Stage Road, Tolland.

Welton, a 19th-century resident of Waterbury, left a bequest to install a large fountain on the town green topped with a bronze statue of her beloved stallion, Knight. She had died on a climbing trip in the Rocky Mountains. Monagan's fictional account portrays her as an adventurous young woman who defied the limitations of her times.

Monagan's earlier books include "The Neurotic's Handbook," "The Reluctant Naturalist," "How to Get a Monkey into Harvard" and "Connecticut Icons." His talk is sponsored by the Tolland Historical Society, which operates the museum, and the Tolland Public Library Foundation. Information: 860-872-7716.

Talking All That Jazz

A free open mic challenge called Talking All That Jazz will be held at Hartford Public Library, 500 Main St., Hartford, on Wednesday, July 20, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. It is presented by Iron Poets, Hartford Public Library, Vintage Fiyah Open Mic Family and The Hartford Jazz Society. Special consideration will be given to jazz-related poetry, and the winner will perform Sept. 10 at the 55th annual Hartford Jazz Society Cruise. Information:

Seafood Cookbook

On Thursday, July 21, at 7 p.m. at R.J. Julia Booksellers, 768 Boston Post Road, Madison, Mike Urban will give a free talk about his new book, "The New England Seafood Markets Cookbook: Recipes from the Best Lobster Pounds, Clam Shacks, and Fishmongers'' (Countryman Press, $19.95). The book offers 150 recipes, featuring clam chowders, codfish cakes, lobster rolls, stuffed clams and many more favorites, accompanied by profiles of more than 30 seafood markets. Urban, of Old Saybrook, a former executive at Globe Pequot Press, is an editor and writer of travel, outdoor recreation, sports, food, and business/career books. Registration is required: 203-245-3959 or

A Weatherman's Memoir

Barry ZeVan, a TV weatherman who began his career as a child actor and singer and went on to success in the Minnesota's Twin Cities, Washington, D.C., and Las Vegas, will visit the The Barnum Museum, 820 Main Street, Bridgeport, on Sunday, July 17, at 2 p.m.

ZeVan will give a free talk about his book, "My Life Among the Giants, A Memoir" (4 Square Books, $15.95). ZeVan credits his friend, the actor Jerry Stiller, for inspiring him to write the book, which features stories about ZeVan's many show business acquaintances. Information: 203-331-1104, ext. 100, or

Author Lunch

Hickory Stick Bookshop, 2 Green Hill Road, Washington Depot, will present a Meet an Author for Lunch series event with Constance Leisure, whose debut novel, "Amour Provence" (Simon & Schuster, $16), is a story of two small villages in southern France and the overlapping lives of their residents. The event on Wednesday, July 20, at noon, includes a catered lunch and book discussion. Admission is a purchase of the book at the shop. Leisure was a magazine editor before moving to France with her family. She also has a home in Litchfield. Reservations are required: 860-868-0525. Information:

Connecticut Authors Trail

The eighth annual Connecticut Authors Trail, a series of free talks presented at 20 Eastern Connecticut libraries, from Mansfield to Mystic, continues with in South Windham and Jewett City, with a finale Sept. 15 at Mohegan Sun featuring romance writer Kristan Higgins.

On Tuesday, July 19, at 6:30 p.m. at Guilford Smith Memorial Library, 17 Main St., South Windham (Information: 860-423-5159, author Diana K. Perkins will discuss her mystery novel, "The Nonprofit Murders" (Shetucket Hollow Press, $14). Set in Eastern Connecticut, the book is about a murdered librarian whose bequests to local nonprofit groups lead to her death. Perkins, a native of that area, sets her novels in that part of the state.

On Thursday, July 21, at 6 p.m. at Slater Library, 26 Main St., Jewett City, (Information: 860-376-0024), Matthew Goldman, who is known as The Constant Waterman, will talk about his self-published book, "More Landmarks You Must Visit in Southeast Connecticut" ($12.95). The book, the second in a series, is a local history and travel guide to 60 sites in southeast Connecticut, with 58 illustrations and 23 hand drawn maps. Goldman lives in Stonington. Information:

Matthew Dicks In Colchester

Novelist Matthew Dicks, of Newington, who teaches in West Hartford and co-founded the Speak Up storytelling organization, will give a free talk on Monday, July 18, at 7 p.m., at Cragin Memorial Library, 8 Linwood Ave, Colchester.

Dicks' latest novel, his fourth, is "The Perfect Comeback of Caroline Jacobs" (St. Martin's, $24.99), about a woman who settles an old score with surprising results. Information: 860-537-5752.

Summer Foraging

Blogger Karen Monger and her husband, Robert, and daughter, Gillian, who call themselves The 3 Foragers, will speak Monday, July 18, at 6:30 p.m. at Manchester Public Library, 586 Main St., Manchester.

Their book, "Adventures in Edible Plant Foraging: Finding, Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Native and Invasive Wild Plants" (Skyhorse, $14), explains how to gather, prepare and safely consume wild berries, mushrooms, edible flowers and seashore plants found in Connecticut. They will present a slide show and offer recipes and handouts about foraging at the free event. Information: 860-645-0821.

Local Author Festival

Avon Free Public Library's free Local Author Festival will continue through July 28. Forty authors are taking part in programs featuring romance, travel and mystery books, among other topics. The Library is at 281 Country Club Road, Avon.

The festival will present a Romance Author Afternoon on Friday, July 22, at 2 p.m. Appearing will be Victoria Hanlen, author of "The Trouble with Misbehaving: (Kindle, $3.99); Anna James, author of "Chasing Memories" (Samhain, $14.99), which is book two in her Forevermore Series; Ann Clement, author of "Debt of Honor" (Samhain, $16.99); Jamie Schmidt, author of "Life's a Beach" (Kindle, $3.99) and Megan Ryder, author of "Going All the Way" (Tule,$10.99). Information: 860-673-9712 or

Maynard In Derby

Wethersfield author Glenn Maynard discuss his book, "Strapped Into An American Dream" (Strategic Book Publishing, $16.99), which is about his one-year journey through the 48 continental states in an RV, at Derby Public Library, 313 Elizabeth St., Derby, on Monday, July 18, at 6:30 p.m. Information: or 203-736-1482.

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