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Poet Molly McCully Brown ’08 talks about her book on NPR

In an interview with Fresh Air host Terry Gross on NPR, Molly McCully Brown ’08 spoke about her book of poetry, The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded.

Molly also talked about growing up on a college campus, where her parents taught and where she discovered poetry; living with cerebral palsy; converting to Catholicism; and losing a twin sister.

After earning an associate of arts from Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Molly transferred to Stanford University, graduating with a bachelor of arts in English and Creative Writing. Molly was a John and Renée Grisham Fellow at the University of Mississippi, where she received her master of Fine Arts in Poetry.

Book cover

The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded, which won the 2016 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize, explores the haunted legacy of a medical institution that was at the heart of the eugenics movement in the first half of the 20th century in America. Through her poetry, Molly, who grew up not far from the institution, imagines what life was like there during that time.

Molly’s book was published in early March. She returned to Simon’s Rock later that month to read from her book.

Molly has also received the Bondurant Prize for Poetry from the University of Mississippi and the Louis Sudler Prize in the Creative and Performing Arts from Stanford University. Her poetry and essays have been published or are forthcoming in Gulf Coast, Colorado Review, Image, TriQuarterly Online, Kenyon Review, and The Rumpus, among others. Molly is working on a collection of essays about disability, poetry, religion, and the American South.