Closing Time

The street was slick with fallen rain. The water steamed off into the muggy air as if the street was sweating.

They came outside into the dark, one by one, ragged, sniffing and somewhat bewildered. The door closed behind them.

The angel unfurled his wings, silvery white, reflecting off the sheen of the wet street. Without a glance towards his companions, he took flight. The millionaire – the last one out – looked at the angel and threw a rock at him. The rock missed. The angel disappeared.

The philosopher scratched his head under his hat. “I reckon I could go east or west. One of these directions will be the right one. The trouble is, I shall never know which.”

The singer, with a beard that defied existence, coughed loudly. “All my days I’ve been the losing kind,” he said. “The lord will kick my soul when I die.”

The writer, clad in a torn shirt and trousers borrowed from his brother, sat down on the pavement. He looked at the others wryly. “My life has been an attempt to piece together things I’ve done and then forgotten.”

The ragamuffin gave a nod to each of the others. He dusted off his grimy suit, adjusted his tie and doffed his hat. Then he ran east to capture the sun before it awoke.