because I didn’t know better

“You’re a bastard, you know that? Fuck you!” were the last words I ever heard her say, as she slammed the door. I can’t say that I blame her. I had brought home the clap for the third time. I was horrible to her. I left her alone on nights when I could have been there for her. I “worked late nights,” I had told her when she knew I was with other women. I wasn’t being such a wreck deliberately, but because I didn’t know better. Suddenly, there she was in a cross walk. The light was red and I nearly hit her. She slammed her hand on the hood of my cab in indignation. I’m sure she didn’t recognize me. God she was beautiful. An angel. I let out a deep sigh, then answered her the same way I had twenty-five years earlier. I mouthed silently, “I’m so sorry.”