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Madman in Remission | A Poem by Donal Mahoney

Does he remember?
Jenny, how could he forget?
Thirty years ago you roared
into his office and raged
about your cousin’s
decision to marry him.
He had never met you.
Your cousin had told him
you were in town
and suggested he
take you to lunch,
show you Chicago.
She didn’t know
you were angry.
You were just Jenny,
her cousin, her playmate
from childhood
down on the farm.
You didn’t want her
to marry anyone
and leave you the last
cousin still single,
something odd
in those days
when nobody knew.
You mocked him
and he couldn’t respond
with people around.
But, Jenny,
you could have died
that day in his office.
Thirty years later,
he’s still a madman
in remission.
No apology will do.

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