Issue 1
Lotte Lenya

Lotte Lenya

The great woman came to our house in the suburbs for supper. She was tiny and tart, like a kumquat.

She came with her friend, who was my mother’s friend. She sat at our dining room table, the one my mother stripped and refinished herself and which I gave away to a stranger after she died, though my mother had wanted me to keep it.

The great woman ate at our table because that evening she would hear my brother play in a student production of her husband’s masterpiece. She had sung the lead in Berlin, in New York.

She was trying to keep her husband’s legacy alive.

She sat opposite me, like a tiny queen, and ate my mother’s lasagna.

Elisabeth Frost is the author of All of Us: Poems (White Pine), Rumor (Mermaid Tenement Press), A Theory of the Vowel (Red Glass Books), Bindle (Ricochet Editions, a collaboration with artist Dianne Kornberg), and the monograph The Feminist Avant-Garde in American Poetry (Iowa). She is also co-editor of Innovative Women Poets: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry and Interviews (Iowa). Frost has received grants from the Rockefeller Foundation-Bellagio Center, MacDowell, Yaddo, and others. She is Professor of English and Women’s/Gender/Sexuality Studies at Fordham University, where she edits the Poets Out Loud book series from Fordham Press.