Saturday, August 1, 2015

Donal Mahoney- A Poem


Hair salons for men 
are everywhere now.
Not many barbershops
like Herman’s any more,
the walls lined 
with ancient men  
in folding chairs, 
most of them gray,
balding, long retired.

Many come to Herman’s 
on canes, crutches, walkers.
One man brings his wife behind 
an oxygen tank on wheels.
Ladies are welcome
at Herman’s Shop in 
cases of emergency.

When it’s time for a trim
the place to go is Herman's
even though he's older 
than many of the men.
He conducts monologues
behind the barber chair
while waving scissors.

Herman preaches about 
everything except religion. 
Like smoking, religion 
is forbidden in the shop
although Herman once 
told a customer  
he believes in God
and had seen him.

Herman saw Jesus in 1951,
he told the customer,
while lying on the ground
bleeding in the grass 
somewhere in Korea.
Jesus walked up with 
medic alongside him.
Two days later Herman 
was on a cargo plane
flying to meet a surgeon.
Everything’s been good,
Herman said, since then.

Donal Mahoney lives in St. Louis, Missouri. 

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