Blonde with an E

(Based on a true story from one whose roots are as blond as her hair is brown)

Mollie Mohrmen,
always on the hunt for a job
that offered discounted meals,
finally got an interview
at Hogi Yogi
in Jellystone Mall.
When the manager told her
that he was looking for people
who were hungry,
& she said,
“Well, I just had lunch,
but I appreciate the offer,”
the interview was over,
& she never understood why.

Fiction Friday: Novelines from the Book

Green Haven was known as Winterhaven in the cooler months, going back to Green in spring, then to Beach the other half of the year.

Mother would wear the golden crucifix she had worn as a child on her wedding day, for it meant more to her than her wedding band ever had.

There were Molly Mormons & Peter Priesthoods, Jack Mormons & Utah Mormons, & each deemed themselves more enlightened than the others.

The New Millennium would bring me great joy & sadness, replacing contentment & complacency. I would gain the whole world, & lose my soul, in part.

Sister Schafer was a true-blue, red state conservative, who wore elephants dangling from her ears—religion on her sleeve, politics on her ears.

A bridal shower in the Mormon Church was a G-rated bachelorette party where no man in a civil servant uniform would be showing up to remove it

There was a wedding dressmaking contest—the dresses being designed from toilet tissue. “Hope no one’s full of it today,” Kath whispered.

There was a coupon-nest-egg scavenger hunt, Donna complaining the whole time, “Why couldn’t we have done something with power tools?”

All of the handheld kitchen gadgets we played the next game with were breast-cancer pink, covered with a towel that said, “Love at Home”.

Mother’s gifts consisted of books called The Lost Art of Homemaking, Crocheting for Newbies with yarn in baby colors, & The Joy of Love.

Mother lifted the lid and nestled on the satin they had glued in there (like the inside of a coffin) was a set of real scriptures (rather than the Church-issued ones).

The most controversial gift was a lacy black negligee that unraveled when the pink bow was pulled. It seemed so…unMormonlike.

A consensus had been reached that as long as the wearing of the lingerie led to the act of procreation, the ends justified the means.

Almond Pistachio

So I was sitting in the car with my daughter,
the secondhand light from the windshield
warming my face,
even as the breeze from the open windows
cooled it,
waiting for my husband to return with his
self-medicating bourbon,
all the while planning Easter dinner,
trying to think of springy foods,
thinking a pistachio dessert would be just that,
being green.

And it was then,
like a flash of lightning,
I remembered Joey had loved
almond pistachio ice cream,
for we had went to the parlor once,
where I always got chocolate mint,
which was unnaturally green.

Overcome, I was, with this memory,
which fails me often,
for people will come up to me,
and I will walk with them in stores,
not knowing who they are.

Seven years too late,
seven years too late I waited,
to tell this boy,
now a man,
how sorry I was
for shamelessly using his glorious body,
well-endowed by our Creator,
to forget the man whose heart
was cold to me
because I fit not the Molly Mormon mold.

Seven years gone from this earth,
and I never even knew,
thinking, every once in a great while,
that we would run into each other someday,
and I could love him as a friend,
as I hadn’t been able to love him as a boyfriend.

My Joey—
with the Elvis sideburns and
the smile that would cause women of all ages
to throw piles of money on the tables he waited—
this boy whose love for me was lusty and pure,
who could’ve given me lots of children,
but I wouldn’t have had the one who is in the back seat,
chattering away in echolalia,
because the love I have for the one I have
is priceless against the ones I could have had.

Because of her,
I’ve no regrets,
save for a kindness owed.

This ice cream memory
struck me like lightning.
I pray it will strike twice,
for I am torn apart with grief
for this boy I know now
I could have loved.

I ask God
to tell Joey I am sorry—
to tell him that I had cared
and not known it
after all.

Herstory almost repeated itself,
for I almost lost my second chance
at a Joey-like love,
because I was in love with another man
when I met my husband,
and time was running out;
for what, I did not know,
but I married the man who loved me back,
just as I should have done
all those years ago.


This “personal geography” poem was originally named, “Life, in Five Acts” (like a Shakespearean play).

The stanzas below were merely abstract introductions to much longer stanzas of a seven-page, narrative poem.

Spain: 1987
I lost half a sense,
which may have saved all the rest.

Saved: 1996
I lived with myself,
and knew not who I was.

Montana: 2003
I was Molly Mormon,
looking for Peter Priesthood.

Utah: 2004
I lost my faith,
but reclaimed my creativity.

Brian: 2013
And so a woman must leave her family
to create one of her own.

Hannah: 2013
I led her to milk,
but she would not drink.

College: 2014
I feared our future,
so I changed my present.