Cousin Eddy and the Packed Chapel
by Walt McDonald

Eddy was everywhere, fast boy with big feet,
our school's medal-man girls laughed about
barefooted at the beach. Nobody's toes
kicked sand like Eddy's--Hey, Scoops,

the girls yodeled. He loved it,
long flippers better than Bill's big nose
or Arnold's ears. Before Saigon,
Eddy was a banjo marvel in college,

taking charge of parties,
banging and singing, parting the sea
of fried chicken, the first boy
aunts and cousins served. He led

a dozen of our class to Vietnam,
walked point in jungles for his platoon.
We buried Eddy in winter with the casket closed,
family and friends from everywhere,

coeds he dated, coaches, the pastor
asking us all to move over, please sit close,
make room for others outside the church
to come in where it's warm.

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