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Spadina Literary Review  —  edition 8 page 18

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Christmas lights

by Rose Grenoble

Gets dark so soon these days.
At least the office party wasn’t terrible this time.
You looked cute in that red suit.
The things I do for the firm.
We’ll have our Christmas when?
Maybe January. Mid January.
Let’s drive past your house.
Why?
I want to see the lights.

So OK there’s the lights.
They’re gorgeous.
Let’s go now.
Red, gold. Green, blue. The porch, the tree.
It’s just for Christmas. We do it every year.
What if she looked out and saw us now?
I’d say the truth.
Which truth?
I was driving you home and I showed you the decorations.
Did you put them up?
I did.
How does it start?
How does what start?
Does she say Oh Nicolas dear when are you putting the lights up? Then what do you say?Enough. Let’s go.
The place looks merry anyway.
January we’ll go somewhere, a weekend.
She won’t notice you’re gone.
I’ll say there’s a meeting.
She knows that you’re cheating.
What makes you say that?
She can’t be as dumb as you think.
I don't think she’s dumb.
You want to call a halt?
A halt? To us? How long would that last?
One of us would have to move away.

Here’s your building.
Are you coming up?
For a little while if you want.
Let’s stay out, go for a drive.
Where to?
Along the riverside, we’ll look at the lights on the mansions.
Sure, if you want.
I want to see the reindeers on the roof, the inflatable snowman family on the lawn, the whole caboodle.Sounds pretty kitschy.
Some of us, that’s all the Christmas we get.
Did you have to say that?
C’mon, Nicky, it’ll be a hoot.