HOW IT STARTED: A COLLECTION OF POETRY

Open Access
Author:
Servey, Erin E
Area of Honors:
English
Degree:
Bachelor of Arts
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • James Brasfield, Thesis Supervisor
  • Marcy North , Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • Poetry
  • Mental Illness
  • English
Abstract:
These poems—inspired by my own autoimmune disorder, psoriasis, and anxiety—deal with inner disorder, illness, and the attempt to figure out the origins of such struggles many of us face as part of being human. I pull in figures—such as, deceased poet, Hillary Gravendyk, and well-known wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda Fitzgerald—whose lives create intrigue in the way they lived and died with their disorders. Through my own lyric voice I attempt to capture the complexity of disorder, with the help of some history (Biblical references that allude to how lepers were treated and mention of an island that used to be a leper colony). If anything, these poems aim to capture moments and feelings of isolation associated with disorder or illness, as well as open up the question of how inner struggle can influence outer struggle, and to examine the possible origins, not only of my own struggles, but of tough, relatable human experiences.