Laurie Lamon

The Beginning and the End



What do we make of the God of vengeance, the bloodshed of kings,

  the women running from homes without

preparation; what do we make at the end of astonishment’s

    glance without preparation for darkness, and afterward,

darkness? What do we make of the landscape where stone begat stone,

   where soil was lifted and carried, and the cell’s

transparency was lifted and carried; what do we make of the feathers,

   the imprint of glass, the black weather swept

into floorboards; what do we make of the twenty-seven bones

    of the hand, the clod of dirt, the ring?

What do we make of the son replacing his meals with mourning,

   his evening run and the hour of bedtime reading

with mourning? What do we make of a father’s wristwatch, a hospital

   window, sun-splintered; what do we make

of the driver’s license and telephone number, the heart’s

   empty quarter, the history of voices, birthplace and geography,

the blurred eye, the shoelace pulled from the shoe?



“The Beginning and the End” is reprinted from Without Wings (CavanKerry Press, 2009).

Laurie Lamon’s poems have appeared in The Atlantic, The New Republic, The New Criterion, Ploughshares, Arts & Letters, Journal of Contemporary Culture and others, including 180 More Extraordinary Poems for Ordinary Days, edited by Billy Collins, and the Poetry Daily and Verse Daily websites. In 2007 she received a Witter Bynner award, selected by Poet Laureate Donald Hall.She has also received a Pushcart Prize. Lamon holds an M.F.A. from the University of Montana and a Ph.D. from the University of Utah. Her two collections of poetry are The Fork Without Hunger and Without Wings, CavanKerry Press (NJ), 2005 and 2009.  She is a professor of English at Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington.


READING:  Laurie Lamon will be reading from The Plume Anthology of Poetry, 2012 at Elliott Bay Books on Thursday, November 1, along with poets James Bertolino, Brian Culhane, Tess Gallagher, and Richard Kenney,