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University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Doctoral Dissertations

Literature in English, North America

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Collateral: Poems, Joshua Jon Robbins May 2012

Collateral: Poems, Joshua Jon Robbins

Doctoral Dissertations

In the lyric tradition of Gerard Manley Hopkins’ Terrible Sonnets and James Wright’s odes to the Midwest, the poems in Collateral interrogate the complexities of faith and doubt in middle-class America and present a witness compelled to translate suburbia’s landscapes and evangelical banalities into a testimony of hard truths. These poems explore the emotional exhaustion that accompanies language’s broken connection to ideal meaning and how both are unable to fully correspond to our lives. The manuscript is also an exploration of my own corresponding lyric struggle to reconcile what is and what should be, the personal and ...