Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2015

Document Type


Type of Thesis

Departmental Honors



First Advisor

Julie Carr

Second Advisor

Joel Swanson

Third Advisor

Noah Eli Gordon


This work is a collection of poems that explore the topic of fire, from the abstract to historical to visual. In the vein of documentary poetics, I wrote several research-based sections on the burning of women as witches in 14th and 15th centuries, the Iroquois Theater Fire (1903), Our Lady of the Angels school fire (1958), the fires in Yellowstone (1988), and The Waldo Canyon Fire (2012). I utilized images to express the concepts in the work, and use text as a visual tool as well as a literary one. As well as an exploration of fire, the work became an expression of the inadequacies of language to express loss. The poems in this collection are incredibly diverse. Style, form, and voice vary immensely from one section to the next, almost to the point of discordance. Fire is the only thread they share. Fire itself has so many facets, and our interactions with it are so complex, limiting the kinds of poems I wrote would have hindered my ability to explore the subject fully. Both in content and form, I followed whatever sparked my interest, whatever inspired me. It was a liberating experience, and allowed me to both stretch my abilities as a poet and watch my work take on new life.

Included in

Poetry Commons