Thomas Lux

Thomas Lux Poems

A man risked his life to write the words.
A man hung upside down (an idiot friend
holding his legs?) with spray paint
to write the words on a girder fifty feet above
...

More like a vault -- you pull the handle out
and on the shelves: not a lot,
and what there is (a boiled potato
in a bag, a chicken carcass
...

Your baby grows a tooth, then two,
and four, and five, then she wants some meat
directly from the bone. It's all
...

each day mowed
and mowed his lawn, his dry quarter acre,
the machine slicing a wisp
from each blade's tip. Dust storms rose
...

One wave falling forward meets another wave falling
forward. Well-water,
hand-hauled, mineral, cool, could be
a kiss, or pastures
...

The artisans of this room, who designed the lamp base
(a huge red slug with a hole
where its heart should be) or chose this print
of a butterscotch sunset,
...

Senator, statesman, speaker of the House,
exceptional dancer, slim,
graceful, ugly. Proclaimed, before most, slavery
an evil, broker
...

As you descend, slowly, falling faster past
you this snow,
ghostly, some flakes bio-
luminescent (you plunge,
...

They are, the surfaces, gorgeous: a master
pastry chef at work here, the dips and whorls,
the wrist-twist
squeezes of cream from the tube
...

gnawing through a shinbone, a high howl
inside of which a bloody, slashed-by-growls note
is heard, unlike that
sound, and instead, its opposite: a barely sounded
...

follows the river as it bends
along the valley floor,
going the way it must.
Where water goes, so goes the road,
...

13.

One sweet pound of filet mignon
sizzles on the roadside. Let's say a hundred yards below
the buzzard. The buzzard
sees no cars or other buzzards
...

How, in the first place, did
they get torn-pulled down hard
too many times: to hide a blow,
or sex, or a man
...

furnished rooms, flats, a hayloft,
a tent, motels, under a table,
under an overturned rowboat, in a villa (briefly) but not,
as yet, a yurt. In these places
...

What I love about this little leaning mark
is how it divides
without divisiveness. The left
or bottom side prying that choice up or out,
...

is not silent, it is a speaking-
out-loud voice in your head; it is *spoken*,
a voice is *saying* it
...

At the fence line, I was about to call him in when,
at two-thirds profile, head down
and away from me, he fell first
to his left front knee
...

(dirt stolen from an infant's grave around midnight)
Do not try to take it from my child's grave, nor
from the grave
of my childhood,
...

Early germ
warfare. The dead
hurled this way look like wheels
in the sky. Look: there goes
...

Thomas Lux Biography

Thomas Lux (born December 10, 1946) is an American poet that holds the Margaret T. and Henry C. Bourne, Jr. Chair in Poetry at the Georgia Institute of Technology and runs Georgia Tech's "Poetry at Tech" program.
Thomas Lux was born in Northampton, Massachusetts, son of a milkman and a Sears & Roebuck switchboard operator, neither of whom graduated from high school. Lux was raised in Massachusetts on a dairy farm. He was, according to those who knew him in high school, very good at baseball, basketball and golf. Classmates also recall that he had a "terrific sense of humor."

He graduated from Emerson College in Boston, where he was also poet in residence from 1970–1975. His first book—Memory's Handgrenade—was published shortly after.

Since 1975, Lux has been a member of the writing faculty at Sarah Lawrence College. Lux is also a core faculty member of the Warren Wilson M.F.A. Program for Writers. In 1996 he was a visiting professor at University of California, Irvine. A former Guggenheim Fellow and three times a recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Lux received, in 1995, the $50,000 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award for his sixth collection, Split Horizons. His poems are featured in American Alphabets: 25 Contemporary Poets (2006) and many other anthologies.

He currently holds the Margaret T. and Henry C. Bourne, Jr. Chair in Poetry at the Georgia Institute of Technology and runs their Poetry at Tech program, which includes one of the best known poetry reading series as well as community outreach classes and workshops.

The Best Poem Of Thomas Lux

"I Love You Sweatheart"

A man risked his life to write the words.
A man hung upside down (an idiot friend
holding his legs?) with spray paint
to write the words on a girder fifty feet above
a highway. And his beloved,
the next morning driving to work...?
His words are not (meant to be) so unique.
Does she recognize his handwriting?
Did he hint to her at her doorstep the night before
of "something special, darling, tomorrow"?
And did he call her at work
expecting her to faint with delight
at his celebration of her, his passion, his risk?
She will know I love her now,
the world will know my love for her!
A man risked his life to write the world.
Love is like this at the bone, we hope, love
is like this, Sweatheart, all sore and dumb
and dangerous, ignited, blessed--always,
regardless, no exceptions,
always in blazing matters like these: blessed.



Anonymous submission.

Thomas Lux Comments

Sylvia Frances Chan 06 October 2021

CONGRATULATIONS being chosen as The Poet Of Today, by Poem Hunter and Editors. We are very happy to read this, best regards, Sylvia Frances Chan, The Netherlands

0 0 Reply
Angie 10 October 2019

Tom was great performing artist w/ his iconic poetry; didn't realize the magnitude of being in his MFA workshop in the 1990s

0 0 Reply
Y Robinson 11 October 2006

Tom, thank you so much for letting me know it's okay to love words. I love & miss you. xo, Raisin

4 8 Reply

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