Life of the Party

 

TVs left on in any empty house debate the reasons that we play with fire. Impending dusk, and the streets brownout. Down memory lane. Each type of quiet that would pinch your bones: forecasts for dust storms in the hourglass. For now you’re at a party where everyone is in a different room. You probe the little family on the mantel. A guest has stolen baby Jesus. But you’re here alone. Out the window, through the parted curtains, a man follows the distant, tinny song of the ice cream truck into a cul-de-sac. You watch this man, your father, circle round until he stumbles on his knees. His bloody knees. The host is gone. No one will come to refill the canters, to put more pretzels in the bowl. So, what will it be? You fool! Go home. Go home if you can.