Saturday, July 18, 2015

Surprise, Surprise

The mother's dead. 
Thirty years later 
you meet the daughter 
and realize the daughter 
is the mother again, 
poking her finger 
in your chest half an hour
after her plane lands. 
The same laugh knocks
folks in the elevator 
back a bit.

Every time the daughter 
grabs your arm 
to emphasize a point
the way the mother did,
you want a ticket
to the Maldives
or maybe Bulgaria.
Sofia in the summer
might be nice.

This time, however,
you stay put.
She found you
on the Internet.
You must admit
the freckles 
across her nose 
scream she's right: 
You are her father. 
Surprise, Surprise.
Her mother never said.


Donal Mahoney


That Valentine's Day in Manhattan


You're standing on a window ledge
on the 50th floor of your building.
It's Valentine's Day in Manhattan, 
clouds cruising, sun everywhere, 

a nice breeze tossing your hair,
the taste of that woman always there.
Do you wonder what happens after 
you jump or do you simply not care?

Does God meet you half way down
and say "What a foolish thing to do." 
Or does Satan appear and shout
"Here's the Magnus Doofus of my day."

Do you begin to wonder when 
you're a foot above the asphalt 
whether you'll hear the splat or 
do you jump and simply not care?


Donal Mahoney


The Human Condition


Did I forgive her, you ask?
What a silly question.
Why wouldn't I forgive her?
The mother of my children,

she's been dead for years.
Our long war died with her.
Did I attend her funeral?
I'd have been a distraction.

But I pray for her, 
the repose of her soul.
She belongs in Heaven,
no denying that, up front

in a box seat after all 
she's been through.
If I'm lucky, I'll find 
the side door to 

Heaven unlocked.
I'll sneak in quietly
and if Peter doesn't  
throw me out, I'll sit

in the bleachers.
The question is, 
will I wave if she 
turns around?


Donal Mahoney