Desert Walking: Poems
"Only a lover's, and therefore the Lover's, beauty could force a poet of such honest insight to tell us everything. Which is exactly what Kenny Fries does in Desert Walking,, never holding back from us, and more crucially, himself even the most invisibly painful moments ..."
— Agha Shahid Ali
"From Exodus to Eliot's The Waste Land the desert has been the site for spiritual quests that balance a deep mourning the human condition against a longing for joy and transcendence. I see this same alternation in Kenny Fries's Desert Walking, where the American wilderness fosters the poet's quest, its nonhuman austerity tempered by the presence and solace of a beloved camerado in the tradition of Whitman. The promise of Kenny Fries's earlier work is realized in this one."
— Alfred Corn
"In elegantly contemplative poems, Kenny Fries explores the natural world of the desert, carrying us on a journey that is both an esthetic and spiritual quest. Richly interwoven with colors and contours of the land, bomb testing sites, holy place, native lore, and offering homages to artists Georgia O'Keeffe and Ellsworth Kelly, this wise book merits our praise."
— Colette Inez
“These spare, precise poems chart the complexities of human intimacy with both delicacy and brashness. Their mix of candor and tenderness is memorable and moving.”
— Chase Twichell, author of The Snow Watcher
“Kenny Fries’s poems reach beyond yearning to the gravity of making—where both loss and rejuvenation touch in the song.”
— Stephen Kuusisto, author of Planet of the Blind