UNOH Professor Publishes Book of Poetry

Posted on Thursday, September 03, 2020


Dr. Carmel Morse, UNOH Associate Professor and Author of Bloodroot

UNOH Professor Dr. Carmel Morse is celebrating the debut of her first book of poetry entitled Bloodroot.  Dr. Morse, an Associate Professor and Chair of English, Communication and Humanities courses in the College of Business, was motivated to publish a collection of these poems by many influential women in her life. 

Bloodroot was inspired by women that I love but are now deceased: my mom, Billie; my sister, Greta; my Auntie Greta (whom I call Emma in my book to avoid confusion); and my Granny Ida,” said Dr. Morse.  “These women grew up during a time when ‘women's stories’ were considered irrelevant by society, so I tell their stories, sometimes in their voices or personas. Some of their stories are joyous but others are fraught with sadness, even despair.”

Her favorite poem in the book, “Knowing her”, is about a daughter’s bond with her mother that begins in the womb through their DNA and continues to influence generations of women to come after them.  “I hope that readers take away a sense of what it was like to be a woman in the past beginning with my Granny Ida, who in 1917, had to raise two daughters on her own by scrubbing floors, hand sewing, and cooking for others,” Dr. Morse explained. “It ends with poems about me, growing up with an abusive father in a dysfunctional home.  But there is also joy in the book as I witness the birth of by grandson described in one of the poems.”

Morse hopes the reader takes away a plethora of emotions as well as a sense of ancestry learning about influential women in their own lives; grandmothers, mothers, sisters, and aunts, who may otherwise be considered ‘everyday women’, but who are far from ordinary.

Poems within Bloodroot have won accolades as stand-alone pieces from a variety of literary organizations.  The poem “Ghost Insomniacs” won first place in the League of Minnesota Poet’s Award, “Knowing Her” received an honorable mention from the New York Poetry Forum, and “The Folks at Caffe Lena” received an honorable mention from the Ohio Poetry Association.

Reviewed by South Dakota Poet Laureate Christine Stewart-Nunez, Dr. Morse’s Bloodroot “doesn’t obscure the shimmering details of pain, but names and wonders and challenges.  In doing so, this sharp poet transforms memories of abuse and regret into art.”

Dr. Morse dedicated Bloodroot to several fellow poets and professors who have inspired her throughout the years, but is firstly dedicated to her husband Scott and daughter Traci who encouraged her to travel to Lincoln, Nebraska for two years to complete her PhD coursework.  While she was away from family for two years, they were her cheerleaders in every possible way.

You can purchase your own copy of Bloodroot on Amazon here.

Category: Campus & Community, Business, Health, and Occupational Professions

Keywords: Carmel Morse, Poetry, Bloodroot

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Last updated: 09/03/2020