Committing Poems – Lois Marie Harrod

Committing Poems

You should commit a poem, she said,
the way you commit a crime,
sometimes with malice aforethought,

sometimes by accident. She had
stolen, of course, from Degas, who
says something similar in French,

and then pretended the dictum was
her own offence. The truth is most of
her works were not pre-meditated,

they simply slipped off the bridge
as she trotted by on her clumsy feet.
To her credit, she maintained

the difference between justifiable
homicide—when she lay waste whole
epics—and excusable homicide—

when her lyrics strangled on their
own chords. When death occurred,
which it did as frequently as it does

in a murder series, she was quick
to admit the sharpness of her wit which rarely cut to the heart of the natter.



Lois Marie Harrod’s 16th collection, Nightmares of the Minor Poet, was published by Five Oaks Press in June 2016. Fragments from the Biography of Nemesis (Cherry Grove Press) and the chapbook How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth appeared in 2013. She’s widely published in journals and online: see

Read ‘Blueberries’ also by Lois Marie Harrod, here.


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