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Edgar Lee Masters (1868–1950). Spoon River Anthology. 1916.

135. Roscoe Purkapile

SHE loved me. Oh! how she loved me!

I never had a chance to escape

From the day she first saw me.

But then after we were married I thought

She might prove her mortality and let me out,

Or she might divorce me.

But few die, none resign.

Then I ran away and was gone a year on a lark.

But she never complained. She said all would be well,

That I would return. And I did return.

I told her that while taking a row in a boat

I had been captured near Van Buren Street

By pirates on Lake Michigan,

And kept in chains, so I could not write her.

She cried and kissed me, and said it was cruel,

Outrageous, inhuman!

I then concluded our marriage

Was a divine dispensation

And could not be dissolved,

Except by death.

I was right.