Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Heart to Heart

"Are you still mad at me?"
She says nothing. She won't even turn around and face him. You're never too old to pout.
He puts his arm around her left shoulder and drapes it around her breast.
"Please baby. Don't start the day like this"

More nothing. She's being cold to him. He uncurls himself from his wife of 40 years. He sits up and hunches forward, his hands rest on his cheeks. He's upset.
"I'm sorry"
Time passes. You can hear it on the clock. Its one of those loud ones. Each second has its own little click. Watching time pass in angry silence when you are old is difficult.

He remembers when they were young. Sailing around the cape, flicking off the Kennedy compound, cheap beer and thick joints while watching the sun set, its light dripping into the ocean. Their friends, their families, fun, and failure.

That's it. That's what set him off. "You failed to give me a child", that's what she told him last night. It came out of the blue. There was no warning that day, rather it was the sort of thing that had grown and festered over what he had thought were happy years together.

You failed me

"Was life with me really that bad? Is a child all that matters to you, now, at this age?"
That's what set her off. Age. That it did not matter now what they did or how hard they tried. She would never be a mother. Your dreams are the sort thing that you get around doing once the garbage is taken out, and the bills are all paid, and you get that degree you always planned to do, and so on for as long as you can hold it. You can always put a dream aside for the moment but realizing that its never going to happen, that its dead and someday soon so will you too, there is no real way to get over that. Especially not first thing Sunday morning.

He thought. He thought about his work. Arbitration. Compromise. That's how he made his fortune. If he can pacify a sweaty, smokey huddle of union guys, than this shouldn't be a problem. That's how he made a life for the two of them. It was good enough for her yesterday.


That's the wrong way to look at it. We both want to be happy. I love this woman.

He turned towards her.

"Let's adopt. We got the money. We got more than a few good years left in us. The help can do all the more unpleasant things. We can focus on ice cream cones, trips to the zoo, and hugs. Let's do it. Let's find some sad lonely kid and let's give him a good life. A great one! I'm glad you brought this to head today. I love you and I can't be happy if you aren't"

He's very pleased with himself. He plops himself down next to his wife again. He kisses her on the back of the neck. She's still cold.

"Are you still mad at me, baby?"

He kisses her a few more times on the back of her neck. Its cold. Really cold.


She's dead. It probably happened in her sleep.

Don't go to bed angry.

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