Age 78: “yes I would like the bold please. with a sleeve if you wouldn’t mind.” “how are you today sir?” “I’m well. thanks for asking. I’m enjoying this blue sky it seems fresher...” “I know! your coffee will be right out.” “oh. O.K.” the shop smells of stale grinds—that is to be expected—but also something like polish or oil paint. everything is surgical now. time passes like an injury to a bone or a deep bruise. each day gnaws at me if I wallow, but in retrospect, history—like a body’s broken rib—moves quickly, mending snags and setting splints. what I wouldn’t give for a fall night at O’Claire’s by the patio fountain that smelled of fish and mold, all of us acting like kids—being kids. a walk down Navajo Road each of us happy to be paired with any other for the moment, “I’m so thankful for you.” “we are always so in tune.” “live in anticipation of the dawn!” “breath of fresh air?” a fight, even, with all of the love and frustrations, graces and sacrifices wrapped into expletives that were too malicious and red-faced for either of us to take very seriously. I hope you made it to that big house you imagined, my dear, that you found my mother, that nothing reminds you of me,—you deserve a moment alone after James and Liv and my own eccentricities—that the journey has ended just as we lived for it to. the paint around the window is a standard taupe, but where the chair has rubbed, green is peeking through. I wonder if this used to be a video store, or perhaps a doughnut bakery.