The Hazlitt Offensive: Molly Peacock

The poet, biographer, and memorist answers our (trademark pending) questionnaire.

Author Molly Peacock, photo by Andrew Tolson

Molly Peacock is the Toronto-based author of six books of poetry, a one-woman show, and the best-selling biography, The Paper Garden: Mrs. Delany Begins Her Life’s Work at 72. She has also edited a number of anthologies and collections and is the General Editor of Best Canadian Poetry in English. Her latest book is Alphabetique, 26 Characteristic Fictions.

1.What are three words you associate with your first relationship?
Sweet, Hairy, & Forever.

2. What’s the worst thing you ever did for money?
Sold Fuller Brush door to door. Turned my studio apartment into a B&B.

3. What is your least favourite song?
Bob Dylan’s “Just Like a Woman.”

4. What is your favourite song?
Carolyn Leigh’s fabulous lyrics to Cy Coleman’s song, “The Best Is Yet to Come,” sung by Blossom Dearie: “Out of the tree of life I just picked me a pluuuummmmm.”

5. What’d you have for breakfast this morning?
Hand-made cherry almond granola (only available from Mike’s Sweet Everythings at Toronto's north St. Lawrence Market on Saturday mornings) with organic blueberries and organic Greek yogurt topped with cinnamon and toasted pecans. Plus a cuppa English breakfast tea.

6. How do you feel about Joni Mitchell?
Absolutely love her. Joni, how about being the next Guest Editor of The Best Canadian Poetry in English? We’ll make it easy for you!

7. How did you learn what sex was?
Five-year old Molsie sticks her finger in her vagina, then waves it beneath her Grandma’s nose. “Smell THIS!” Molsie says. Grandma, bless her sex goddess heart, says, “Whew, what a cupcake smell!”

Cupcakes = Yes, I said yes.

8. Where do you imagine all our lost T-shirts go?
T-shirt Heaven is soft and dark and smells to each shirt of the armpits of its lost beloved wearer. All the Tees crumple softly into the end of a colossal bed, smooshed down into the sheets at the foot after having being wrested off in our passion or exhaustion, then made into the bed by heavenly unseen hands. Amen.

9. Who do you consider the funniest person in the world—that we would know?
Is it Joan Rivers? Or was it Gracie Allen? Or Sandra Shamas doing her boyfriend’s laundry? Wait, no, it’s Roz Chast, plus Lynda Barry and Kate Beaton at Drawn & Quarterly.

10. What’s the worst insult you’ve ever said?
Blabeda, blabeda, AND YOU’RE SHORT!

11. What’s the worst thing you’ve ever been called?

12. What’s a deal breaker for someone you’re in a relationship or in love with?
Publishing something I’ve written under their name.

13. What’s something you do every night before bed?
I say, “I love you” to the sweet, hairy, forever boy from my first relationship. Reader, 25 years later, I married him.