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Poet Thaxton to speak at “Ideas and Images” event

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Terry Thaxton

Terry Thaxton will give a reading of her poetry on Oct. 3 as part of the college’s “Ideas and Images” series.

Sept. 14, 2012

As a fourth generation Floridian, Terry Ann Thaxton believes that the natural landscape of the state, from its scrub to its pine flat woods, had a major impact on her life. That impact can be felt in her first collection of poetry, “Getaway Girl.”

“The poems in ‘Getaway Girl’ explore how the external landscape affected my internal landscape and perception of the world,” said Thaxton who will give a reading of her poetry at Flagler College on Oct. 3 as part of the college’s “Ideas and Images” series.

But Thaxton, who teaches English at the University of Central Florida, said poetry didn’t always come easy.

“When I first began writing poetry, I was unable to write but a few poems. I simply could not recount the events of my childhood,” she said. “Still, I was driven to write from my imagined experience.”

As she continued to write, Thaxton discovered that the driving force behind her poems was the desire to give voice to the silence that had been expected of her as a female in her family.

And while her poems often begin with a personal impulse, Thaxton hopes her writing goes farther that.

“I want my writing to extend beyond the personal to reveal truths about the human experience,” said Thaxton. “In terms of composition, I want the poems to show experimentation, a sensitivity to craft and a respect for the tradition of poetry.”

Thaxton hopes her presentation will show her poetry as “an expression of often inexplicable emotions, compressed into language, filled with images that give voice to experience.”

“Art, in any form, attempts to communicate our humanity,” she said. “I use the world around me, the world in which I grew up and live, to explore the techniques of craft and the relationship of people to the landscape.”

In addition to “Getaway Girl,” which was published in 2011 and won the 18th Annual Frederick Morgan Poetry Prize, Thaxton will be releasing her second book, “The Terrible Wife,” in 2013. She has published poetry in journals such as Rattle, Connecticut Review, Comstock Review, Hayden’s Ferry, West Branch, Tampa Review and other international literary journals.

Thaxton’s presentation will take place Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. in the Flagler Room at Flagler College, 74 King St.
"Ideas and Images: Visiting Scholars and Artists Program" will feature an international composition of artists and authors, introducing a fresh and creative component to the greater St. Augustine community.

Each event is free and open to the public. Call (904) 819-6282 or visit for more information.