Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing (MFA)

Degree Level





Geoffrey Brock

Committee Member

Davis McCombs

Second Committee Member

Michael Heffernan


This thesis is a collection of poems that deal with familial tragedy, personal loss, and lament determined by place and human influence, particularly that which is influenced by societal and religious factors of the bible belt of the Southern U.S. Most of the works herein have been constructed with the writer's hopes of delivering human truths excavated from the dust and corrosion of factors beyond the individual's control. The title itself, "Making My Bed in Hell," comes from the King James Version of the Christian Bible, but with the writer's own objective of repurposing text for personal meaning that might lend itself to a better understanding of the human within such a setting and upbringing. It is the writer's wish that this use of religion, as a source of inspiration or conflicting muse, is not meant to be representative of dogma, but instead a representative of the social and cultural backlash to religion-based tradition that is in itself an indicator of change in the time and place of the writing of this thesis.