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have you looked into lasagna gardening/sheet composting?

Basically the gist is, you don't need to kill anything - lay down a thick pad of wet newspaper or cardboard, make sure it overlaps well, and weigh it down with, oh, 24 inches or so of layered mulch materials. Compost, Grass clippings, spoiled hay or straw, leaf mold, etc. Let it sit over the winter and you've not only killed your grass but built up a fabulous raised bed, it'll be halfway decomposed by this point. You can even cover it with black plastic to "help" the process along.
 
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