The Cold and the Rust: Poems (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Upon hearing Emily recite her poem “Varsity Athletics” several years ago at Wakefield High School, I found myself gasping at her courage. I knew that I needed to pay attention to this poet’s writing. Every poem in this collection braves the Upper Peninsula’s landscape instilling a sense of pride, wonder, and worry for all of its inhabitants and the land. She grew up here, she paid attention, and now gives back the gift of her insights. Many readers say something like “I don’t get it” when reading poetry. Those of us who are from remote rural places will find ourselves grateful for these poems. ~Dianne

— From recent reviews list


Winner of the 2016 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize in Poetry, a tender portrait of a queer girlhood on Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

In this lyrical and unflinching debut, a landscape of staggering beauty abuts industrial towns in the throes of economic decay. Emily Van Kley explores notions of home, estrangement, isolation, and longing against a backdrop of crystalline winters, Lake Superior’s mythic tempers, and forests as vast as they are close.

About the Author

Emily Van Kley lives in Olympia, Washington.

Product Details
ISBN: 9780892554881
ISBN-10: 0892554886
Publisher: Persea
Publication Date: March 13th, 2018
Pages: 72
Language: English