The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Lois Marie Harrod’s “How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth”

Lois Marie Harrod

From Lois Marie Harrod’s chapbook How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth

Pitching Headlong Into Her Own Kitchen


Marlene Mae could still smell
her mother’s
zuppa d’amore
simmering on the stove,
all those tomatoes
and thick kisses coming
to a slow boil
behind the high beams
of that
extra virgin
oily Chrysler
where she
had first tasted olives
so many falls
ago. You were
my mistake,
her mother had told her
when she was twelve.
An hour afterwards
he ran out of gas,
and they had to hoof
if back to town,
the rain coming
down like rosemary,
and all the way
he talked
about his mom
and her
quick dishes.
She knew then
she would never
marry him
whatever it was
he had
taken from her.

This selection comes from Lois Marie Harrod’s chapbook How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth, available from Dancing Girl Press! Purchase your copy here!

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, 2011. Cosmogony won the 2010 Hazel Lipa Chapbook (Iowa State).  She is widely published in literary journals and online ezines from American Poetry Review to Zone 3. She teaches Creative Writing at The College of New Jersey. Read her work on

Leslie LaChance‘s poems have appeared in Quiddity, JMWW, the Best of the Net Anthology, Apple Valley Review, The Greensboro Review, Juked, The Birmingham Poetry Review, Slow Trains, Free Lunch, Chronogram, and Appalachian Journal. She also edits Mixitini Matrix: A Journal of Creative Collaboration. Her chapbook, How She Got That Way, appears in the quartet volume Mend & Hone from Toadlily Press.

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