First Advisor

Michele Glazer

Date of Publication

Spring 6-18-2014

Document Type

Closed Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in Creative Writing






Ontology -- Poetry, Home economics -- Poetry



Physical Description

1 online resource (v, 103 pages)


How to Avoid Huge Ships and An Index of the Matters is a collection of poems divided into two sections, "How to Avoid Huge Ships" and "An Index of the Matters." These poems inhabit a wide variety of (primarily free-verse) forms, and range in length from a few dozen words to more than eight pages. The first section, "How to Avoid Huge Ships," is itself divided into three parts, or "questions," which engage with a variety of themes, including ontology, alienation, memory and domesticity. The second section, "An Index of the Matters," is a series of linked poems that lean heavily for much of their diction and syntax on an 1855 Portuguese-English phrasebook, O Novo Guia de Conversação, em Portuguez e Inglez, em Duas Partes, by José da Fonseca and Pedro Carolino. These poems share a common situation, in that they locate themselves within a particular domestic setting--a particular life, lived in a house-shaped house--which they observe, approach and explore from all angles. They concern themselves with "indexing" the quotidian "matters" of this shared life, seeking to illuminate what hides beneath the everydayness.


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Persistent Identifier