Mar 292015

by Diane Webster


While his wife shops at the grocery store,

the husband sits in the car in the parking lot.

A roll of paper towels escapes a bag

and bounces under the car so the woman

tries to reach it without touching her clothes

to the pavement until she pulls the car out,

straddles the fugitive towels and tosses the package

into the car like a naughty child

going to hear about it when they get home.

A flock of sparrows swoops to a stop

near the squashed bag of bread

and delicately dines on crumbs

until a rude patron roars into the spot

and parks his oil-dripping rattletrap.

His wife emerges, and he smiles

as he helps secure the goods inside

while in the next car in the front seat a dog sits

and stares at the automatic doors and people

until his master appears, and he stands and wags

his tail as his breath steams up the windshield

in a welcome-back bark.