Talking with the poet and therapist Emily Kendal Frey, about her most recent book, Loveability, and how In poems we’re not only making space to explore risky ideas of self, but space for a reader to do the same. It’s a relationship with narrative that leaves space for the reader to see and being seen. But also that traumatic, or intense experiences, that are what make up significant changes and points in our lives, seen by the reader in the poem, offer solidarity in the unspeakable, and comfort in the fact they were spoken–in all their most ineffable, even inchoate, ways.
The follow-up to her 2014 collection Sorrow Arrow (winner of the 2015 Oregon Book Award for Poetry), Emily Kendal Frey’s volume LOVABILITY is a dialogue of social and interpersonal dynamics, as well as an exploration of the feelings of freedom and longing they produce. “Scourged the river bottom for my lost self”— she writes in the collection’s final poem, “I Became Less Acceptable to Those in Power”— “Brought them up/ Touched their face/ The armor/ Split and leaking light.” A professional counselor and teacher, Frey’s work in LOVABILITY uses direct, image-driven poems to name the world we are a part of, to listen in.
E-book available here.
About Emily Kendal Frey
Emily Kendal Frey is the author of The Grief Performance (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2011), winner of the Norma Farber First Book Award from the Poetry Society of America, and Sorrow Arrow (Octopus Books, 2014), winner of the 2015 Oregon Book Award for Poetry. She is a teacher and therapist and lives in Portland, Oregon.