Study Guide

Cathedral Part 2

By Raymond Carver

Part 2

  • Robert and the narrator are alone together with the TV.
  • The narrator isn't happy to be alone with Robert and wishes his wife would come back.
  • The narrator asks Robert if he wants to smoke some marijuana and Robert agrees, though it's his first time.
  • They smoke and have more drinks. When the woman comes back downstairs, "wearing her pink robe and her pink slippers" (2.6). She smokes a little with them.
  • Sleepy, she tells Robert to go to bed whenever he's ready and then falls asleep on the couch between the two men.
  • The narrator asks Robert if he's ready for bed and Robert says he'd rather stay up with the narrator.
  • They haven't had a chance to talk.
  • The narrator says he's "glad for the company" (2.28) and means it.
  • Apparently, he does this every night, "smoke[s] dope and stay[s] up as long as he can" (2.29). Then he goes to bed and has dreams which make his heart beat very fast.
  • The TV is showing a program about "the church and the Middle ages" (2.30).
  • The narrator doesn't want to watch it, but there's nothing else on.
  • He tells Robert he's sorry, and Robert says it's OK.