Twenty years after their marriage began, Joan and Richard Maple were divorcing. The story is told from the point of view of Richard. They are being divorced in the same city hall building in which they had been married. He even picked her up in his car on the way to the divorce.
Throughout, Richard is filled with memories of their first meetings, courtship and marriage. The divorce is no-fault, about which the lawyers are concerned. No-fault divorce had never been done before in Massachusetts.
What were the causes of the divorce? They were incompatible politically. She always wanted him to be joining marches. They were also incompatible sexually as had been his father and his mother.
One of his memories was that after their marriage, he forgot to kiss the bride. After the divorce, he did kiss her.
Rating: **** out of *****.
About the Author: “John Updike’s mastery with words is legend. He is one of the USA’s best-known contemporary writers. Born in Shillington, Pennsylvania in 1932, he attended and graduated from Harvard College in 1954. His talents were recognized early. He has published several collections of short stories, novels, volumes of poetry and criticism. The tall, slender, boyish Mr. Updike now lives in Massachusetts. “ p. 165.
Short Story International #27. Ed. Sylvia Tankel. (August 1981), pp. 153-165.