Walking Papers (Hardcover)


By Thomas Lynch

W. W. Norton & Company, 9780393042085, 96pp.

Publication Date: November 1, 2010

Other Editions of This Title:
Paperback (5/7/2012)

List Price: 24.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


A decade's worth of poems by one of our most reliable witnesses, National Book Award finalist Thomas Lynch.

In his fourth collection of poems, Thomas Lynch attends to flora, fauna, and fellow pilgrims: dead poets and living masters, a former president and his factotums, a sin-eater and inseminator. Faux-bardic and mock-epic, deft at lament and lampoon, fete and feint, Lynch's poems are powerful medicines, tonics for the long haul and home-going.

from "Walking Papers"

     You can think of it as punctuation

     and maybe take some comfort from that, friend—

     a question mark or exclamation point—

     no matter, we're all sentenced to an end,

     the movers and the shakers, bon vivants,

     all ne'er-do-wells and nincompoops, savants,

     sage and sluggard, deft and daft alike:

     everyone's given their walking papers.

About the Author

Thomas Lynch has authored five collections of poetry, one of stories, and four books of essays. His first, The Undertaking, won the Heartland Prize for Non-Fiction and the American Book Award, and was a finalist for the National Book Award. His writing has appeared in the Atlantic, Granta, Harper’s Magazine, and the New York Times, among other publications. He works as a funeral director in Milford, Michigan, and teaches at the Bear River Writer’s Conference.