Archive for the Donal Mahoney Category

A Bride for Mr. Fenster by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on July 13, 2017 by Scot


Three sisters
single in their 40s
gather ’round the fire

on a night of thunder
to figure out which sister
should marry Mr. Fenster,

a widower in his 90s now.
He proposed last week to
all three of them and said

he would marry one
and provide a nice home
for the other two.

Mr. Fenster owns a farm
down the road a mile or so.
Worth a lot of money

he buried a wife a year ago.
He’s mourned enough, he says,
and wants to marry a nice lady

who will make him happy.
Mabel and Maude say Millie
should be the bride.

After all, she’s the youngest
of the three, can cook and clean
and is young enough

and strong enough to lift
Mr. Fenster on and off.
Millie says no way

About Dad by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on April 18, 2017 by Scot


They’re in the kitchen,
drinking coffee, the kids,
in their fifties now,
figuring out what to do
about Dad who’s
in the parlor listening,
counting all the marbles
they think he’s lost.
The six of them flew in
to bury mother.
They won’t go back
until they figure out
what to do about Dad.
At the funeral they saw
Father Kelly kiss Dad’s
wedding ring, the one
he’s worn for 60 years.
Father Kelly bowed
over the wheelchair
as if Dad were pope
and told him he’d be over
Tuesday night as usual
for checkers and a beer.
Best two out of three
goes to heaven first.

Monsanto’s Gift to War by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on March 8, 2017 by Scot


Smitty isn’t Schulte.
He doesn’t drive a Cadillac
and doesn’t hit his wife
often any more.
Schulte, on the other hand,
drives a Cadillac
and hits his wife
usually on weekends
for no good reason.
He’s been doing that for
more than 40 years
ever since the boys
came home from Viet Nam

not knowing they had been
touched by Agent Orange,
Monsanto’s gift to war.
They had a double wedding with
girls they liked in high school.
Smitty says therapy
has helped a little.
He hasn’t struck his
second wife in years.
But Schulte hasn’t changed.
The police have come again
tonight, sirens blaring,
gumball lights swirling.

Two big officers,
matched like bookends,
march Schulte out in cuffs.
He’s cursing at his wife
who’s in a nightgown
bawling on the porch
as if Schulte’s going
back to Nam again.
Smitty swears Schulte
never left the paddies, that
he’s still knee-deep in water
bright with Agent Orange,
Monsanto’s gift to war.

Another Birthday for Dr. Martin Luther King by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on January 20, 2017 by Scot


The longer I live the greater Martin Luther King looks
compared with those who have tried to carry on his work.
The man had integrity, guts, ideas and class.

It was heartbreaking in the Sixties to be young and
filled with hope for change in America, only to see
JFK, MLK and RFK murdered in the same decade.

Young people of all kinds had hope back then even if
we saw little change. We thought it was time for a quiet
revolution of ideas in America. That never happened.

My hope is Mike Pence doesn’t succeed Donald Trump
the way Lyndon Johnson succeeded Jack Kennedy. We must
find a peaceful way to get through these next four years.

Ringing in the Ears by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on January 3, 2017 by Scot


Ringing in the ears
has no cure.
It’s called tinnitus
and you can pronounce it
the way it looks or the way
your doctor says it.

Today I discovered how
to turn the ringing off
and that’s to take
a phone call from your son
who says your daughter
died last night.

She won the first
and second match but
lost the last to cancer.
An hour later you realize
the ringing in your ears
has stopped but there’s
no silence in its wake.

A train of memories
chugs by and stops
and then chugs on again.
You want the ringing
in your ears back again.
You can live with that.

Make America Grate Again by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on December 25, 2016 by Scot


Before the Inauguration
the man must divest himself
of his stocks and bonds

close every hotel he owns
lay off hundreds of employees
so they have time to hitch

a ride to Washington and sell
red caps for his inauguration
to make America grate again.

Epilogue for an Election by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags , on November 27, 2016 by Scot


After the TV mavens had their say
the gnomes crept out of their caves
spoke and returned to their caves.

Thunder struck, hell broke loose
and the mavens came back on TV
predicting Armageddon.

In cities all over the nation
pimples popped and broke.
Pus flows in the streets.

No More Toilets for Lupe by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags , on November 22, 2016 by Scot


If The Donald gets his way
Lupe will no longer
clean toilets in America

working in hotels
following her husband,
Pablo, as he follows

produce ripening
on vines and trees
and in fields from

California to Alabama
picking peaches
and melons every day

week after week
during the harvest
for you and for me and

The Donald who says
if he gets his way,
Lupe and Pablo will

go back to the village
where a toilet has
yet to be seen.

Drunk Driver Kills Young Lady’s Dog by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on September 12, 2016 by Scot
Melanie cried for hours the day 
a drunk driver ran over her dog
a week after she had an abortion.
She loved that dog so much 
she told her mother she knew 
Ollie was now in heaven barking 
as the angels blew their horns.
Her mother softly daubed her tears.
Nothing worse than losing a dog.

Fireworks after by Donal Mahoney

Posted in Donal Mahoney with tags on July 4, 2016 by Scot

Joe went to the mall yesterday
and found a big tent pitched
at the head of the drive.
Someone selling fireworks.
The sign said discounts
for all veterans.

Joe thought of his brother Bob
after his return from Vietnam,
a victim of Agent Orange.
He would shake if he heard
sudden or violent noises.
He got rid of his guns and
never went hunting again.

Bob didn’t want rifles
shot over his body after he died,
an honor some veterans prefer.
His wife wanted the ceremony.
Joe cried when the volleys were fired.
He could feel his brother
shake inside the urn.