Beowulf and Normal Norman by Donal Mahoney


When Normal Norman takes his seat
in Room 210 in Dumbach Hall
to hear the eminent Dr. Engelhardt

recite Beowulf again,
Norman knows that he can suck
the boredom from the hour

if he can write a poem for his wife, Jane,
better than the poem he gave her yesterday.
Now, however, no poem comes

and so he knows that he must choose
among maneuvers from the past
to drown out Beowulf again–to wit,

he can say the rosary till the bell rings,
sketch his wife’s magnificent ass
or write something strange like this.

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One Response to “Beowulf and Normal Norman by Donal Mahoney”

  1. Donal Mahoney, a native of Chicago, lives in St. Louis, MO. He has worked as an editor for The Chicago Sun-Times, Loyola University Press and Washington University in St. Louis. He has had poems published in or accepted by The Wisconsin Review, The Kansas Quarterly, The South Carolina Review, The Beloit Poetry Journal, Commonweal, Public Republic (Bulgaria), Gloom Cupboard (U.K.), Revival (Ireland), The Istanbul Literary Review (Turkey), Poetry Friends, Poetry Super Highway, Touch: A Journal of Healing, Pirene’s Fountain (Australia) and other publications.

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