Mother: Hey! Who is this? Severin??
Me: No, look again. Don’t you recognize her?
Mother: No… I don’t. Who is it? She looks intelligent.
Me: Think so?
Mother: Yes, it shows on her face. She looks kind, too. So, who is it? I don’t remember.
Me: I was teasing you. It’s that new friend in Berlin. We talk on the computer.
Mother: You were laughing with her? I thought it was Severin.
Me: No, it wasn’t Severin.
Mother: And… she wants to see you? Are you going there?
Me: No. She just wants to talk.
Mother: Oh. Is that all?!
Mother: You’re being stupid… She looks like my friend Mildred.
Me: No way. Just the glasses, maybe.
Mother: Who was that girl in New York?
Mother: You know, what’s-her-name, the one you almost married.
Me: (Pause.) Juliette? Kathleen? Jennifer?
Mother: Juliette! She looks like Juliette.
Me: That was over thirty years ago! How would you remember her?
Mother: It just came back to me.
Me: Well, her name is A. Juliette is older than me. And she doesn’t look the same today.
Mother: Maybe not now.
Me: A.’s an artist.
Mother: So was Juliette, wasn’t she?
Me: A. wrote a book.
Mother: And? You read it?
Me: I’m not done yet. I’d have to read it again though, in one shot.
Me: Because it’s a whole. I was interrupted a hundred times and I had to put it aside.
Mother: It’s a hole?
Me: A whole, Mother, something that’s entire, like a painting, sculpture, music. You don’t listen to music in bits and pieces, you know.
Mother: That’s a lot of music. First book?
Me: First published book. She’s got other stuff in the works.
Mother: And she wants to talk… ?
Mother: Can you open the wine?