2 poems from Donal Mahoney – The Widow Next Door & Letter to an Estranged Middle-Aged Son

The Widow Next Door
Every Saturday 
when the sun is out
and it’s hotter than Hades
Monica next door 
raises her garage door
early in the morning 
and leaves it up 
long past noon as if 
Herm will walk out
at any minute 
oily and greasy
needing to clean up  
the way he used to 
every Saturday
for 30 years until 
liquor ate his liver.
At night Monica
can still hear  
the tall Marine
fingering Taps 
over Herman’s grave.
Letter to an Estranged Middle-Aged Son
The older I get the more I realize
the importance of getting things done
before your mother announces another 
assignment to roust me from my hammock.
As you know I’ve never been much
around the house, my skills limited to 
raking leaves and shoveling snow, 
menial tasks I haven’t missed in years.
Probably not since you lived here.
Your mother, of course, grew up on a farm 
and has always liked getting things done.
But she’s getting older too. In fact,
she recently had a big operation 
and I’ve pitched in beyond my skill set 
despite new stents and a pacemaker.
But even though we just put away
the walker, cane and wheelchair,
all three are on alert so I believe 
it’s best to let you know that
one of these days the one who’s left 
will ring you up and let you know.
For more poems from Donal, go to:

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