Two Poems by Donal Mahoney

That Greyhound Station

This woman
I am interviewing,
one of her front teeth
crosses over the other
and sticks out like a leg
crossed over the other.
Otherwise I would hire her;
I am certain of that.
But she reminds me too much
of that Greyhound station
at three in the morning.
There, alone on a bench,
across from me still,
her little dress up,
skulls of bare knees,
hillbilly child waiting.

Husband and Wife on Hassocks Eating Sausage

He tries again to situate his
grosbeak nose beneath his spectacles.
He twists the toothpick in his teeth
and hunches now a little more toward her,
saying “Listen, dear, I’ve said all this before,
and now I'll say it all again:

“You’re slovenly and gross. Your jowls
swing beneath your jaws like testicles.
Your mammoth breasts need tweezing.
Your freckled calves are carved of lard.
These things are true, my dear.
They’re not some crazed
vision of conjecture.”

The lady belches, reaches for
a pickle spear, a slice of cervelat,
and begins to comb her yellow hair.

She hunches now a little more toward him,
saying “Listen, dear, I’ve heard all this before.
What’s happened here is eminently clear.
You no longer love me.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"That Greyhound Station" by Donal Mahoney is a wonderful, subdued, yet tricky, poem.

The flaw that prevents the "hillbilly" woman from getting the job is the interviewer's- not in the interviewee!

Mahoney deftly side-steps an easy joke about crooked front teeth; then presents us with a simile that leads him back to a time when he was the one "waiting."



About Me

Black-Listed Magazine is an online literary magazine. We publish on a rolling basis: weekly, daily, sometimes hourly. Send submissions here:

Blog Archive