Thursday, October 30, 2014

Donal Mahoney- Three Poems

Thousand-Legger at Midnight

I rise to pee at midnight
and it’s nice to see 
no gunman in the bathroom 
waiting to shoot me

but there’s a thousand-legger,
a centipede, if you will,
in the tub, disoriented 
by the light

walking in circles
like an unhappy cat.  
He’s obviously upset 
he can’t escape the tub

because of the high walls.
A mystery how he got there.
The walls won’t let him go 
where life might dictate.

Now that autumn’s here, 
maybe he’s come to visit
or maybe spend the winter.
He doesn’t know it but 

he won’t survive my wife
well known to other insects,
now deceased, as Big Foot. 
Every once in awhile 

he tries to crawl the wall 
but falls to the floor again, 
the longest centipede
I’ve ever seen, a caboose

suddenly left behind, 
deserted on a railroad track,  
going nowhere till my wife 
applies her heel. 

On Tippy Toes

On tippy toes 
with arms outstretched
my grandson asks 

how old are you
and so I tell him 
I'm sooooo old 

that when I stretch 
my arms like his
to exercise them

vultures land and
caucus there.
My grandson says

he puts his arms out 
so robins will build 
nests on them

and raise their chicks. 
He never takes a nap 
because he has to keep

his eyes on the clouds
to shoo away hawks 
circling for supper.

Gramps Is Still Nuts about Granny

Granny wants to go to a movie 
back in the old neighborhood 
where she and Gramps used to
neck in high school but Gramps 

doesn't want to drive that far  
and tells Granny he’ll go if she sits 
in the balcony and wears a skirt 
he can slide his hand under 

during the Coming Attractions.
Granny asks Gramps if he isn’t 
a little old for that kind of thing  
and Gramps says he’d rather put 

his head under there and let Granny 
box his ears with her thighs 
and listen to his sighs as he harvests 
fruit still ripe in the orchard.

Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

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