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Underlining over ten allegories and many extended metaphors, “The Vandal,” Harris’ first self-published book, is a poetry epic about the ambiguous and emotional deposits of his own “Mary Sue,” who delves straight into one of the most versatile and unconventional exhibitions of melodrama and manipulation in the modern literary catalogue.
Harris does not hold back, making dramatic remarks as well as ensuring an alter-ego at hand through the abstract photography of his face that fills most pages. His repertoire also includes his other concept art and works from fellow artists around the world.
On the very surface, Harris writes about an urban vandal who leaves the night to become famous. Seeing that he does not belong, the vandal flees to the suburbs and, at a house party, falling deeply in love with someone, he later finds that they have stolen his art and soul. While experiencing guilt and later grief about ignoring insights from his past, the vandal must rediscover his meaning and reassess what he wants in the long run.
“The Vandal” is not at all what you would expect. It is a coming-of-age drama of galactic and fantastical proportions. Every character is meant to represent something else for different layers entirely. Individual poems have no clear stylistic ending, and many stanzas frequently switch from consonant to dissonant timbres and fluctuating voices, in like with avant-garde symphonies. “The Vandal” explicitly criticizes topics like class, gender, and technology.
All of the proceeds from “The Vandal” will go to helping Harris afford college in the fall.
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Arts and Humanities | Fine Arts | Poetry
Harris, Thomas '18, "The Vandal" (2018). Distinguished Student Work. 8.
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