Date of Award


Degree Type

Closed Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor

Dr. Beth Gylys - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Paul Schmidt

Third Advisor

Dr. Leon Stokesbury


The title Savage Ballet came into being because, so far as I articulate, it aptly describes the beauty and horror that are borne from combining art and instruction. Poetry, itself, is a ballet. And poetry, itself, is savage. It is a ballet of words carefully choreographed and practiced and spun into being. Poetry is the body politic of the ballet. It is beautiful and often fancy when the curtain rises, but behind the scenes and tucked into toe shoes is the instruction – the gnashing of teeth and blisters and broken nails. Thus, the savage side of poetry presents itself. And, may it also be said, graduate school is a savage beast. It wrestles and tests and knocks down to build up. And, if the dancer is lucky, they will rise.


Available for download on Thursday, January 01, 2099