My father does not know he is going into a nursing home. Perplexed by Alzheimer’s, but today uncomplaining, he sits at the kitchen table. “Annie-love, it’s good to see your smiling face.” He’s been a drunk for so many years, it is hard not to think of these words as a bribe for forgiveness. But I remember now that for a long time I have forgiven him, and I hear his happiness and start to cry, because he understands, sober and aged, even less than he did when he was drunk and middle-aged. My husband stands near the sink. We’re visiting for the last time in the house. Next week my father will go to the nursing home, a cinder-block- and-linoleum building where within two weeks he will charm the staff, insisting everyone call him Reed, have a heart attack, and die. Now my father raises his hand, nods past us toward the dining room, and, smiling, waves. When my husband and I turn our heads to look, we see an empty doorway, sunlight and shadows stippling the green carpet and the warm brown of the wood chairs. “Hello, hello,” my father says, waving to the threshold. “Hello, hello,” he nods to the brightness, smiling.