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This poem is taken from PN Review 97, Volume 20 Number 5, May - June 1994.

Burning Penny McCarthy

To Carthage, then, while he stayed in Milan
to set his life-course on another tack,
he sent his mistress (though he kept his son).
Yes, St. Augustine sent his woman back.

But sanctity was harder than he'd thought.
Trammelled by other lusts, though on the track
of God - a troublesome polarity! -
Augustine yearned to have his woman back.
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