9 in the pocket and we all go home. It’s a 6

Picking up where….

Things had been tense on the home front so I called my bff and we hit the pool hall early.


We left Bumper’s Billiards around 6:00 am on an apple crisp October morning, it was an intense 9 hours of 9 ball with Mike, the owner (a modern day “Minnesota Fats”, but not as fat) and his manager/protege Will, (meet your match Vincent Lauria lol), the 4 of us having gotten lost in green flannel and slate.


Pointing my ’87 Camaro, “Baby”, south, I gazed east while the day slowly and deliberately took her time preparing for her entrance, kind of like me, tension temporarily distracted, my feelings had simmered under cover of the night’s activities, and now, as the speeding white lines on the road reminded me, I was headed home, would coffee or confrontation be the morning’s stimulant?


Walking through the front door of our cedar shingled cottage like a gunslinger at dawn on an unsuspecting old west prairie town, I heard “Morning doll” and made my way to the kitchen to see Jake, hair sleep tousled, half shading his eyes, he was sitting at our custom designed rosewood kitchen table, his right hand resting on the inlaid Talavera Mexican tile (it was our 9th anniversary gift to each other), his left holding a half smoked cigarette, the velvety aroma of hazelnut and chocolate escaping from his coffee mug wafted up and over to me, silhouetted in the doorway.


Listen babe“, I began and stopped because even now, after all these years I was still mesmerized by his eyes, so beautiful, now strangely distant.


Jake leaned over to me holding a lit match – “whadya say kid, my heart’s been frayed for so long now, why don’t we put this to the edges, see if it goes up in flames.”