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On a Very Cold Day
by Wilda Morris

We hung our warm but scruffy coats
and sat at the round restaurant table,
ordered hamburgers and French fries.
We laughed, teased, chatted
as young adults do on a Sunday
afternoon—a day off work for some,
for others a day with no classes,
no professors with hands out
awaiting our take-home exams,
math problems or essays.

When ready to go, we discovered
Rick’s lined jacket was gone. Surely,
the thief, desperate on this January day
of ice and brisk wind, did not know
he’d stolen from the one in our group
least able to afford a new winter coat.
Even so, Rick prayed that his missing
wrap protect the destitute man
from the worst winter possibilities
threatening the homeless and hungry.
Had we known, we would have bought him
a sandwich and hot cup of coffee.


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