Research Statement for Emilie Collyer's Poetry Folio
Note: The remaining poems in this folio are linked below.
Emilie Collyer, Body in Question, TEXT SPECIAL ISSUES Number 58 April 2020 and The Incompleteness Book published Recent Work Press November 2020
Emilie Collyer: white space, Cordite Poetry Review: NO THEME 10: 1 May 2020
Emilie Collyer, Letter of the Law, The Victorian Writer: Wordsmith Issue March-May 2021
Emilie Collyer, Clot, Poet Laureates of Melbourne, published 8 August 2020 (Melbourne City of Literature) https://mailchi.mp/119055501042/july25th2020-4267946?e=8b7801e811
Emilie Collyer, under bridges, Booth (online), 5 March 2021 https://booth.butler.edu/2021/03/05/under-bridges/
Emilie Collyer, Three Poems on Daisy Noyes (Curve, Flame, Skin), The Ekphrastic Review, published online 22 December 2020 https://www.ekphrastic.net/ekphrastic-journal/three-poems-on-daisy-noyes-by-emilie-collyer
Emilie Collyer, Quiet hook, Stilts (online), June 2021 https://www.stiltsjournal.com/single-post/quiet-hook-emilie-collyer
Emilie Collyer, Everyday Antigone, Borderless: A Transnational Anthology of Feminist Poetry published Recent Work Press 2021 https://recentworkpress.com/product/borderless/
Background: Throughout 2020 and 2021 I have been researching contemporary feminist poetics, exploring the various ways feminism manifests in poetry via language and aesthetic, with a particular interest in how feminist writing intersects with affect theory. My interest in this intersection aligns with Pedwell and Whitehead’s assertion that ‘feminist engagement with affective politics’ has the capacity to attend to ‘the ways in which feelings can (re)produce dominant social and geo-political hierarchies and exclusions’. By this I mean I seek to make poetry that is responsive to affect in a deliberately feminist way; that seeks to make visible and articulate broad questions of socio-political tensions and power dynamics.
Contribution: Each of these poems responds to a concrete stimulus. It may be an historical or literary figure, a personal medical event, a news story, a series of photographs about mothering during lockdown, a court case. I use the techniques of poetry, including use of line, space, rhythm, repetition, formal traditions and visual layout, to render the affective qualities of these stimulus via a feminist lens. I do this by the aspect of the stimulus I focus on and the way I use language, such as satirising legal jargon, or building a poem that attempts to mirror the sense of being trolled online. By creating these focussed, feminist poems, I invite the reader to also question the structures and situations the poems evoke and, perhaps, those around them in everyday life.
Significance: These poems have been published in prestigious Australian literary journals: Rabbit, Cordite, TEXT and Stilts; in two American poetry journals: The Ekphrastic Review and Booth; and in three Australian poetry anthologies: Borderless and The Incompleteness Book (both published by Recent Work Press) and the Melbourne City of Literature Poet Laureates Anthology. Poem ‘white space’ was commended in the Melbourne Poets Union International Poetry Competition 2021.