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Katharine Coles On 'The Stranger I Become'

Renee Bright/KUER

Utah’s former poet laureate Katharine Coles says she walks seven or more miles a day, but she doesn’t do it for fitness. For her, walking — moving her body — is a way of freeing her mind, nudging it away from obsessions.

Coles says that walking was “just part of the experience of growing up,” and it’s stuck with her. Now, she’s written a book of essays called The Stranger I Become: On Walking, Looking, and Writing. It’s a meditation on, yes, walking, but also perception, and it’s really personal. She joins us to talk about why she loves to walk, and of course, poetry. Along the way we’ll explore the power of objects, Coles’ father and how she’s thinking of the pandemic as we begin to step back out into the world.

Katharine Coles' book is The Stranger I Become: On Walking, Looking, and Writing. [Amazon|Bookshop]