Home  »  Spoon River Anthology  »  136. Mrs. Purkapile

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

136. Mrs. Purkapile

HE ran away and was gone for a year.

When he came home he told me the silly story

Of being kidnapped by pirates on Lake Michigan

And kept in chains so he could not write me.

I pretended to believe it, though I knew very well

What he was doing, and that he met

The milliner, Mrs. Williams, now and then

When she went to the city to buy goods, as she said.

But a promise is a promise

And marriage is marriage,

And out of respect for my own character

I refused to he drawn into a divorce

By the scheme of a husband who had merely grown tired

Of his marital vow and duty.