Bellarmine student publishes first book of poetry

February 16, 2023

Hanah Carter and book cover

The Kentucky Academy of Science recently honored Environmental Science major Hanah Carter for her research on urban floodplains. But poster presentations are far from the only way she expresses her passion for the world around her: She has just published her first book of poetry.

Ode To Not Knowing, written under the nom de plume Maria Tori, is published by Finishing Line Press. 
“I am a naturalist by both training and inherent nature, so a clear theme of love and spiritual closeness with the natural world runs a thread through this chapbook,” said Carter, who is pursuing minors in Biology and Creative Writing. “Nature and the relationship and reflection of self we have with it have always struck me. There is no better poem than anything nature is doing, that is for sure.”
Ode to Not Knowing coverCarter has previously had poetry published in Ariel, Bellarmine’s literary magazine; The Louisville Review; and Poetry East. 
She said that Professor Fred Smock, her friend and mentor, always encouraged her work. He wrote a blurb for her book before his passing on July 17, 2022:  
“Maria Tori is a naturalist, and a poet of the first order. Her poems brim with the sounds and sights of nature, the humming of bees, the sweet song of birds, and ruffling of seagrass in the wind. Her poems shine a lovely light on the world. They make my life better.”
To order Ode To Not Knowing ($15.99), visit the Finishing Line Press website. Advance orders will ship on March 24.
In November 2022, Carter was one of four Bellarmine students who ranked among the top scorers for research presentations given at the Kentucky Academy of Science’s 2022 Annual Meeting. Her ecology poster presentation was titled "Relationship Between Habitat Quality and Biodiversity in an Urban Floodplain Ecosystem." 

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