Poems and Poetry

A Little Boy Who Won’t Go Away | A Poem by Donal Mahoney

He’s at least 70 now and has
never forgotten his childhood.
He lives with that child every day.
He remembers that Thanksgiving Day
his family had parched field corn
for dinner that he can still taste.
Nothing else in the house to eat.

He remembers his church buying
clothes for him to wear to school.
And he remembers walking to class
through snow with holes in his shoes,
hatless and gloveless, in a windbreaker.
But he got high grades, studied hard
and won a scholarship to college.
He spent his life as a teacher, married
a fine woman and had a good life.

But that little boy never goes away
and has made him promise he would
do everything he can to see that
children in his community never
have to eat parched field corn
not turkey on Thanksgiving Day.
He’s old now and retired but still
goes back to his old school five days
a week to see if some child has a need.
A Crossing Guard can always tell.

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