Figure he pushed away from the bar--Oh seamy side o' life, adio!-- fingers dimpling the red vinyl bumper--what? ten times?--before he headed home--Come on, honey, how's about a kiss?--the Rusty Nails quieting the benzedrine buzz as he drove into the glare of a late suburban sun.
Some farewells take a lifetime.
Kitchen gleaming; wife, starched and mildly tanked herself, stirring chili con carne. I'll serve it in a tureen! Card tables in the dining room set with tally cards and bowls of mixed nuts, ice bucket sweating on the hi-fi.
The children, pj'd and sulking, build oyster-cracker forts on the formica in protest. It's still light outside! But mother finesses them with a trick from Good Housekeeping, a pirouette toward the table, glasses clacking on the silverplate tray that trembles above her head as she chirps, A round of Shirley Temples for the house!