Thursday, May 26, 2011

At supper that night, as many times before

.. his father said, Well, spose we go to the picture show.

Oh, Jay! his mother said. That horrid little man!

What's wrong with him? his father asked, not because he didn't know what she would say, but so she would say it.

He's so nasty! she said, as she always did. So vulgar! With his nasty little cane; hooking up skirts and things, and that nasty little walk!

His father laughed, as he always did, and Rufus felt that it had become rather an empty joke; but as always the laughter also cheered him; he felt that the laughter enclosed him with his father. 

They walked downtown in the light of mother-of-pearl, to the Majestic, and found their way to seats by the light of the screen, in the exhilarating smell of stale tobacco, rank sweat, perfume and dirty drawers, while the piano played fast music and galloping horses raised a grandiose flag of dust ..

James Agee
A Death in the Family
op. post.
McDowell & Obolensky, 1957©
  Appearing previously in:
  The New Yorker
  Partisan Review
  The Cambridge Review
  Harper's Bazaar

No comments:

Post a Comment