Episode 4: Laurence Hutchman & Andy Verboom

Friday, August 26th, 6:30pm – 7:30pm @ Chapters (South), 1037 Wellington Road, London.


Laurence Hutchman grew up in Emery and attended Gulfstream Public School and Emery Collegiate Institute. He received his PhD at the Université de Montreal in 1988. He has taught at a number of universities, including Concordia University, the University of Alberta, Western University, and The Université de Moncton, where was a professor for twenty-three years. Hutchman has published ten books of poetry, co-edited Coastlines: The Poetry of Atlantic Canada, and edited a book of interviews, In the Writers’ Words: Conversations with Eight Canadian Poets. He has received numerous grants and won awards including the Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick’s (WFNB) prize for individual poems and, in 2007, the Alden Nowlan Award for Excellence. He has served as Representative of Quebec and New Brunswick/PEI for the League of Canadian Poets and as President of the WFNB. Hutchman has given many readings and conducted numerous workshops in Canada, the United States, China, Ireland, and Bulgaria. He lives with his partner, the painter and poet Eva Kolacz-Hutchman, in Oakville.

On Personal Encounters: “Laurence Hutchman could as easily have called this new gathering of splendid poems “Homage”…. These poems illuminate for the reader all the things that Hutchman values in his life—poetry, music and art, his family, his soul mate and their love for one another. Hutchman pays homage to the writers, artists, and musicians who have shaped his world, from Mahler to Van Gogh to Rilke and Souster. From a poem for Louis Dudek, Hutchman writes, “snowflakes are words / each shaped like so many different lives.” Hutchman’s love of and commitment to his art of shaping words is masterfully articulated in the poems of Personal Encounters.” —Glen Sorestad, first Poet Laureate of Saskatchewan

Hutchman & Verboom banner

Andy Verboom hails from sub-rural Nova Scotia and currently resides in London, where he edits the Word Hoard and—full disclosure—organizes Couplets, this very reading series. His poetry has appeared in Contemporary Verse 2, Arc Poetry MagazineBafterC, Descant, The Puritan, and the anthology 300 Hours a Minute: Poems about YouTube Videos. He has been shortlisted for Arc’s Poem of the Year and has won the Winston Collins Prize for Best Canadian Poem. His debut chapbook, Tower, was released by Anstruther Press in July. His and David Huebert’s collaborative chapbook, Full Mondegreens, recently won Frog Hollow Press’s Chapbook Contest.

Tower tracks the private flight paths, associative ley lines, and secret lead pipes that connect four cities: Toronto and Halifax, Canada; Wellington and Auckland, New Zealand. If “place is / alchemical projection”—the transmutation of space’s base distances and toxic proximities into glittering skylines—then Verboom is an anti-alchemist. These poems stir travelogue, doggerel, mythography, concrete poetry, ekphrasis, and self-incrimination into a cauldron simmering over the apocalypse.

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