Lois Marie Harrod

No Unimportant Things

There was a man who wrote about important things:
no sex, no love, no domestic scenes, mention who’s

going to strip the bed or shred the cabbage, no shoe
shining, shirt ironing, toilet training which could be done

by the democratic masses, no relationships, itty bitty quantum physics,
factors by which energy-drink-related emergency-room visits

have increased in the past eight years, though he did deem
from prime to prime the estimated weight of debris left on the moon

by NASA, 36,600 pounds, significant, and the rank of Canada
among the largest producers of garbage per capita

in the industrialized world, number 1, which he said
was momentous and worth our consideration.

Uncertainty as You Wobble Through It

You close your eyes as your lady-killer steers
towards the heavy Mack churling into lover’s lane,
nothing you can do but ride the shotgun seat
and you never know just who will be dice
and who will be hasty, the hurricane

that was supposed to bring the house down
like a tenor turns and whirls away.
Farewell Nutcracker. Farewell Balanchine.
Be thankful for non sequiturs, nice and nasty,
your sustenance, insurance policy.

Your sister provides reiki for dogs, all kinds,
hears them talking, take me home with you,
then complains her son thinks
she’s hallucinating, while off the coast
of Australia, sharks are hybridizing,

chancy way to reproduce,
but no worse that having children
by a schizophrenic’s brother,
57 combos swimming in warmer waters.
You have so many weird relatives

and not one skirt-chaser can cook.
On video you watch a wobbegone* swindler
swallow a brown banded bamboo shark
who was just hanging out on the ocean floor
while your mother-in-law makes spaghetti sauce

from a can of Campbell’s Tomato Soup.
When was the last time you used Drano
in the kitchen sink? The bamboo roué
was definitely dead, its pale yellow head
wedged deep inside the carpet’s jaws,

the names we have for predators:
scum, scamp, scalawag, stud, wolf
fink, felon, louse, abuser, oh Prince Charming,
everyone in their turn, woebegone and sad.
Two hours later the drain will still be clogged.

*a kind of shark

Author Portrait

Lois Marie Harrod’s 13th and 14th poetry collections, Fragments from the Biography of Nemesis (Cherry Grove Press), and the chapbook, How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth (Dancing Girl Press), appeared in 2013. The Only Is won the 2012 Tennessee Chapbook Contest (Poems & Plays), and Brief Term, a collection of poems about teachers and teaching, was published by Black Buzzard Press in 2011. Cosmogony won the 2010 Hazel Lipa Chapbook (Iowa State). She is widely published in literary journals and online e-zines from American Poetry Review to Zone 3. She teaches Creative Writing at The College of New Jersey.

View the website of Lois Marie Harrod