by Charles Dickens
as written by Raymond Chandler
It shook me, I have to admit
it, I mean it isn't every day you see a dame go up in smoke
Okay, so she was no angel, she'd made a patsy out of me, and I bet she laughed her skinny ass off when I was sap enough to fall for her scam
. Okay, the way she screwed up Estella's life was as twisted and evil as anything you'll find lying in the gutter at 3am on a Sunday morning, but Jesus, nobody deserves that
And all because of some man
. Some low-down, cheating, lying, thieving, piece of scum
, who took an innocent babe's dreams and wiped his slimy feet all over them.
If I was a crying man, I'd weep
But there's no tears
for Phillip Pirrip. Instead, I light a cigarette
, turn my back on the wreck of the house and give Estella the up and down. She's not the looker she used to be, for sure, but she's still quite a dish, and the broad oozes class.
I was dizzy for her, way back when, but she's always been out of my league and now I'm man enough to face
it. A chick like that wants a mug to drape
her in silks and hang
marbles and ice around her neck
, not some hard-working joe like yours truly.
"You said you forgave me Pip," she says, "Is that true, even now? Are we friends?" You can hear the strain
in her voice, it's as taut
as a bowstring. This matters to her, I can tell.
"Yeah," I say, "We're pals."
"Then goodbye, pal." And she breezes away, like a ghost
or a nightmare
, leaving just a whiff
of her perfume to haunt my dreams.
There is nothing left for me here, so I turn up my collar and take a bunk. I've got a job
to do and a living to make, and it's time I left the stiffs to sleep and started looking where I'm going, not where I've been.