Last Rites for Uptown

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Virginia Tech


This autobiographical poetry collection is about identity, belonging, and brokenness, dealing with the aftermath of a dead mother, a deadbeat father, and a decaying home filled with years of trash and memory. In many ways, this collection is a buildungsroman. For me, what seem like ordinary questions become a journey into memories and experiences that were once repressed. As a child of a hoarder, one who fielded questions from family, friends, and the Department of Human Service for almost twenty years, I am just starting to confidently address the many silences that were and are present in my family: my mother’s quest to hide her breast cancer and her subsequent death as a result of her secrecy; my father’s four other children that I have never met; and my grandparents’ military history spanning three continents in the 1950s and 1960s.



Poetry, Creative Writing, Narrative, Free Verse, Poems