Heavy Metal Nursing by Scott Frey – Preorder for November 15, 2024

“Scott Frey is an astonishing poet, a miracle spinner of life and struggle and love and grief, in a tender, intricate book which will touch everyone who ever suffered, worried, or embraced a child. Heavy Metal Nursing, including the marvelous ‘found poems’ in children’s voices, feels like a miracle of presence and utter life-changing care.”

—Naomi Shihab Nye, author of Cast Away and Everything Comes Next


“In this accomplished debut, Scott Frey plumbs the depths of unthinkable loss in poems that are as formally agile as they are unflinching: prose poems and slant-rhymed pantoums alongside odes to nurses and therapists, a poem-as-instruction-manual for a deep suction machine. What begins as a requiem for the last stages of a daughter’s life deepens into a collection that pushes past fear and devastation—and even death—into something like wonder. This is a speaker I trust, and these poems, ‘half howl, half prayer,’ are powerful testament to the resilience of the spirit.”

—Edgar Kunz, author of Fixer and Tap Out 


Preorder now for November!


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Heavy Metal Nursing tells a story of love which, like all love stories, is a story of loss. It is not a sentimental love but a “heavy-metal” one, kneeling arm-to-arm beside parents caring for their daughter born with a severe brain injury who needs intensive care her entire life and dies at three years old. These poems hum the music of oxygen machines and chest compressions and respond to suffering with “half howl, half prayer.” These are poems of vulnerability and pain, but also of parenting, caregiving, marriage, medicine, humor, tenderness, affection. Over and over, they ask what it means to be “learning / to make life out of this slow dying.”

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