Faculty Research Mentor: Andrew Nicholson, Ph.D.1
1College of Liberal Arts, Department of English
“A Summer of Ashes and Isolation” is a chapbook of nature poems both experimental and conventional. The question that served as a catalyst for the project was the question of “what can we learn from nature?” Through several months of exploring the desert around Las Vegas, recording what was seen, and drafting based on both notes and experience, this collection of poems was given form. The product of this process was a chapbook containing twenty poems influenced and inspired by the desert that has become home to many individuals and institutions, including UNLV itself. There are certain themes that find themselves present in the poetry. Two of the larger themes are those of nature’s beauty and stewardship of the natural world. Accompanying this is a brief introduction. It serves a purpose in that it provides a context for the work to follow and asks the readers to consider the themes in hope that they might spark further drives towards stewardship and natural conservation.