K (Kristin) Prevallet’s (MA, PhD) work focuses on contemporary somatic poetry and poetics, linguistics, pedagogy, and performance. She is particularly interested in language and the innate healing capacities of the bodymind system, and how they relate to corresponding ecologies. She is the author of six books of poetry including I, Afterlife: Essay in Mourning Time and Everywhere Here and in Brooklyn: Re-envisioning Eliot’s Four Quartets. With Tonya Foster, she co-edited Third Mind: Creative Writing Through Visual Art, a collection of works about teaching into the space between image and language. Recent publications include essays, interviews, and thought experiments published in Guernica, American Poetry Review, The Brooklyn Rail, LIT, Jacket2, and Forecast: Analogue Predictions. In 2022, she was awarded a PhD by publication through the School of Humanities at the University of Gloucestershire (U.K.); an excerpt from her thesis titled, “Medicines of Language: Ecosomatic Poetics and Embodied Practice” is forthcoming in the collection Other Influences: Essays on Feminist Avant-garde Poetic Lineages edited by Marcella Durand and Jennifer Firestone, and published by MIT press. She is the director of Trance Poetics, a collective of language arts practitioners who organize workshops, events, and retreats for art spaces and institutions including Naropa University, The Guggenheim Museum, The Poetry Project at St. Mark's Church, Intermedia Lab|Station Hill Press, and the Belladonna Collaborative. She has received residencies, awards, and honors from the New York Foundation for the Arts, PEN America, The Millay Colony, Spalding University, and the Centre International de Poésie, Marseille. She is literature faculty at Eugene Lang College|The New School and the Bard Prison Initiative.
My name is Alexa Young
Longer informal bio:
Born and raised in Denver, CO by a single mother who was also a lesbian and a nun (it’s a long story), I spent most of my childhood in the Rocky Mountains. I now divide my time between Massachusetts and New York. When not writing, teaching online classes and working with private clients, I teach literature and writing classes to incarcerated individuals in upstate New York.
My journey through formal education began at the University of Northern Colorado where I studied journalism with the intent of becoming a news anchor woman. But after my mother died at the age of 46 from a painful and chaotic five-year battle with cancer, I fled to France with the intention of seeking out my distant ancestors and learning French at the Sorbonne. There, I sang in the Metro with a band of Chinese boys and found my way to the American University, where I took classes. After two years, I returned to the University of Colorado where I studied with luminaries including Stan Brakhage, Lorna Dee Cervantes, Anne Waldman, and Edward Dorn. My path became clear: I was a poet. I met the poet Alan Gilbert and followed him to the University of Buffalo, to work with Robert Creeley, Susan Howe, and Tony Conrad.
While in Buffalo I worked at the Poetry/Rare Books Collection where I encountered the uncatalogued archive of the poet Helen Adam. Under the mentorship of curators Mike Basinski and Robert Bertholf, I catalogued Adam’s archive and wrote a monograph of her work and life which was published in 2007 (A Helen Adam Reader, National Poetry Foundation.)
In 1998 I moved to Brooklyn, NY and lived there for ten years, raising my daughter and teaching for Teachers & Writer’s Collaborative, The New School, NYU and finally landing a full time job teaching rhetoric and composition at St. John’s University in Queens. Realizing that the constraints of teaching writing as an academic skill was not conducive to my spiritual or creative well-being, I left that job in 2010 to pursue certifications in Reiki and Hypnosis. I started a school for hypnosis training called The Institute of Mindbody Studies and worked as a hypnotherapist in New York City for ten years, serving a wide range of clients, from artists to day traders to women struggling with corporate jobs.
During this time I published six books including the critically acclaimed I, Afterlife: Essay in Mourning Time, a fragmented lyric memoir about my father’s suicide and the poetics of grief. Other books of poetry include the cult classic Scratch Sides: Poetry, Documentation and Image-Text Projects published by Hoa Nguyen and Dale Smith’s Skanky Possum Press, Shadow Evidence Intelligence, a critique of George Bush and the War on Iraq, and Everywhere Here and in Brooklyn, my feminist homage and revision of T.S. Eliot’s Four Quartets. I also wrote two books connecting my poetic research with my new knowledge of somatic healing and hypnosis: Trance Poetics and Visualize Comfort. My work has appeared in 102 journals and 6 anthologies.
I mention that last bit because in 2022, at the age of 55, I finally broke through my fears and insecurities and got a PhD, under the advisement of ecolinguistic scholar and professor Aaran Stibbe at the University of Gloucestershire in the UK. This is a PhD called Medicines of Language: Ecosomatic Poetics and Embodied Practice which documents how my 25 years of publishing (books, essays, articles, performances and poems published in literary magazines) contributes to the knowledge and practice of somatic poetics.
I have been blessed to receive grants and awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts, the PEN Translation Fund, the Mellon Foundation, and Poets and Writers; I served as writer-in-residence for many years at Naropa University’s summer writing program, Spalding University’s BA Program, the Ocean State Writer’s Conference, The Centre Internationale de Poesie (CiPM), and The Brooklyn Museum. Between 2000 and 2021, I was an associate faculty of Bard College’s Institute for Writing and Thinking, training teachers nationally and abroad, and teaching Learning&Thinking to the undergraduates.