Glean: Poems

Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Committee Member

Claudia Keelan

Number of Pages



Glean, a reference to the gathering of grain after harvest, explores the appalling trust implicit in any act of faith---that prayer may not elicit a response. Spare and evocative, the collection struggles with a language at odds with itself. How do we write about an absence that can never be fully possessed or known, an absence that may be all we ever glimpse of the divine? When does spirituality become more real than its pursuit? Moving between doubt and vulnerability, the body and its unresolved spiritual fate, Glean dedicates itself to the exploration of faith, simultaneously investigating the possibility of salvation and the difficulty of its attainment. Echoing other religious poets and figures---John Donne, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Saint Augustine, Joan of Arc, Simone Weil---the collection focuses on Catholic iconography and ritual, particularly the concept of the crucifixion. Although these poems engage Catholic ideas and beliefs, they are always more personal than denominational or ideological. The focus remains primarily on the question of faith and the private struggle with its absence. The form of these poems fluctuates between the terse, pregnant lines of George Oppen and Paul Celan and the loose, expansive lines of William Carlos Williams and Charles Olson


Glean; Original writing; Poems; Poetry

Controlled Subject

American literature; Literature, Modern

File Format


File Size

839.68 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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