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The man who stood
at the bus stop
saw the gallon
milk jug slip
from my fingers,
hit the sidewalk,
explode on my shoe.

Of course I laughed
and ran back to the store.

I carried the new jug
carefully into the night
where he still waited. I was
obliged to acknowledge him:
“I’ll never do that again.”
He simultaneously said,
“Don’t cry over spilled milk.”

Then I got into my car
and the bus came to take him away.


Jessica Purdy holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College where she also taught writing and was a reader for Ploughshares.  She has a BA in English and Studio Art from UNH.  Her poetry has appeared in Literary Mama, What is Home (the 2007 Portsmouth Poet Laureate program’s publication), Ethereal Dances, Analecta, The Beacon Street Review, and Main Street magazine.  She runs poetry workshops in downtown Exeter and facilitates weekend writing retreats on Cape Cod:  Harwich Port House Writing Retreat.  She lives in Exeter, New Hampshire with her husband and two children.

© 2009, Jessica Purdy

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