If It Were A Snake, It Would Have Bit You

Sarah W. Parker '13, Gettysburg College

English honors thesis


Heritage is inescapable. Whether it’s in a nasal “a” or the turn of a phrase, we each exhibit our ancestral sources, and with this collection of poetry, I attempt to examine my own. Born of a family that has resisted movement for over a century, I work within the cultural traditions of Appalachian knowledge and folklore to explore my own connection with the landscape of the Blue Ride Mountains, presenting it within the context of personal experience. Through a variety of poetic forms, from ekphrastic free verse to contemplative tankas, this collection examines personal heritage through varied lenses. Exploring the dichotomy of connection and disillusion, of volition and guilt, of desire and fear, this collection works to reconcile the discomfort and tension of maturation.