Date of Award
Master of Arts
This work is a collection of poems that delve into the complex and harsh lives of several generations of the women in my family who made their way across America in the 18th, 19th, and 20th century. These succeeding waves of settlement, represented by succeeding generations in my family, mirror the historical waves of settlers that eventually populated the mid-western, southern, and western parts of the United States. These were real traveling people with colorful stories, full of hardship, poverty and tough choices. I have worked to unearth their voices by doing genealogical, historical and linguistic research to fill in the blanks. Somewhere out of this exhaustive research process voices begin to rise up-each one distinctive and all-her-own. These tough women-all of them survivors-are the personae who speak in the poems included. The creative tension has been to turn the words and stories of the voices that enter my head into poetry.
Digital Repository @ Iowa State University, http://lib.dr.iastate.edu/
Mary Anne Henson Saunders
Henson Saunders, Mary Anne, "Calling their names: a historical genealogy in personae poems" (2003). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 16242.