Pretty Mouth and Green My Eyes

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"Pretty Mouth and Green My Eyes" is a short story written by J. D. Salinger for The New Yorker, collected in his Nine Stories. It is the story of an old man who speaks to his friend on the phone about his wife, while the old man appears to be with her.

Plot summary[edit]

Lee and a girl are in his apartment together. The phone rings and he reaches across her to answer it. It is Arthur, worried about his wife, Joanie, who disappeared from a party. Lee tells him to relax and assures him that she will turn up soon. Arthur is worried about his job too. He is a lawyer and has just lost a case. After he rings off Lee turns to the girl and she tells him he was wonderful and that she feels like a dog. (She is apparently the missing wife.) The phone rings again. It is Arthur to say that his wife has returned. Lee is speechless with amazement and ends this conversation very quickly.