Although e-mail and cell phones have long since replaced handwritten letters to parents of college students in faraway places, Peter Miller, a senior, uses the concept as inspiration for his new collection of poetry to explore his changing relationship to home while at Goshen College.

Miller, an English and music double major, will release his collection “Writing Home,” on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. in the Koinonia Room in the Church-Chapel.

“The title of the collection … is a play on words,” Miller said. “Apart from the obvious meaning of communicating over a distance, it also means something like ‘contemplating home’ or ‘describing home’ when taken more literally.”

The collection begins with material written while at Goshen College, which Miller describes as “Midwestern, rather un-exotic, fairly intellectual stuff.” Miller then moves away from this new-found home in the book’s middle section, featuring poetry written while traveling in England, Ireland and Senegal. He concludes with a section of homecoming works, returning to his origins in Goshen and the Midwestern United States.

The book release and signing will include selected readings of Miller’s own work as well as from other poets, including Goshen College students.

“Writing Home” will be available for purchase at the event for $5.


by Peter Miller

The air smelled like a zoo today.

Not stinking elephants or monkeys,

or any animal in particular.


Just that, for one moment,

as bent flowers unbent themselves

and patches of snow grew lonelier,


the sun gave back the sundry

memories we had leant her for winter.

Here, she said, they’re yours again.