Date of Graduation

2015

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

Degree Type

MFA

College

Eberly College of Arts and Sciences

Department

English

Committee Chair

James Harms

Committee Co-Chair

Adam Komisaruk

Committee Member

Mary Ann Samyn

Abstract

A Census of Ghosts is a collection of poetry that explores personal biography by moving into imagined space and challenging narrative structures. The through line of the collection is the death of the speaker's niece, set in interludes between each section of the book. These poems act as way-points that disrupt as well as place the reader and speaker. Their placement mimics the continuing to experience of grief throughout the speaker's life: sudden but expected. They serve as grounding moments, and emotional keystones the other poems may be seen in the light of, but stray away from a purely narrative structure.

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