Finishing Line Press
Adult, 28 pages
ISBN 978-1-62229-776-4


A poetry chapbook is a small collection of poems, no more than 40 pages, simply bound and paper covered. Many small literary presses publish chapbooks.

I wrote the poems in my chapbook Breathless when my children were small. A couple of the poems were published; the rest sat in my drawer for years. But then, thanks to the children’s writer and poet Jacqueline Jules, I discovered Finishing Line Press and their chapbook publishing program. I am grateful to Finishing Line for bringing my poems to light.

Many of the poems in Breathless are about children, my own and others.  A few are Jewish-themed.


In the words of Wendell Berry, Sarah Lamstein’s poems are like “jeweled lozenges,” at once simple and faceted, each revealing its own particular color and light.
– Kim Triedman, author of Plum(b) and Hadestown

Honest, empathic, and humorous, these poems urge us to grasp the moment, a glint of mischief in our eyes.
– Helen Marie Casey, author of Fragrance Upon His Lips, Inconsiderate Madness, and My Dear Girl: The Art of Florence Hosmer.

Sarah Lamstein’s poetry is at once celebratory and elegiac. Without sentimentality, she reaches deep into motherhood, aging, danger, and grief. You will remember these poems.
– Norbert Hirschhorn

In this poignant collection, Sarah Lamstein shows us how to look inside a moment and extract meaning.
– Jacqueline Jules, author of Field Trip to the Museum and Stronger Than Cleopatra.

One Poem’s Adventure

Bruce Black, on his site Jewish Writing Project, published my poem “Arbeit Macht Frei,”  which I submitted in response to an earlier Jewish Writing Project post by Janet Kircheimer on poets’ responses to the Holocaust.


Too weak for work
I go to the showers.
Death cradles my skull like Leah,
who stroked my thin hair
on a barrack’s shelf.
Skeletal, she picked at lice.

Leah, I am clean.

*”Work Makes You Free” (German) – Slogan over the entrances to a number of concentration camps, including Auschwitz.

Where You Can Purchase

Finishing Line Press
Sarah’s Bookstore