Perihelion: An Online Journal of Poetry and Mayhem
The Phoenix Issue, No. 16, Winter 2008
ContributorsArchiveAbout Us
  H.L. Hix
  Marci Rae Johnson
  Jae Newman
  Geoffrey G. O'Brien
  K. Alma Peterson
Print version


The End: A Collage of Last Sentences
from Novels On My Shelf

They knew the war was coming but it didn't matter.
The Pacific is such a wide, fathomless ocean, and here
we are, still on the rim. It was the first and only time
I stood there. The searchlight, while it was on, had shown
thousands, white in the white light. Now only the sun
and the parasol remain. Only the last of the summits
still rose above her, but she continued to climb, farther into
the solitude of the inviolate snow. And on the way home,
she met her brothers, and there was a rough-and-tumble,
and the lovely crown was broken, and she forgot
the message, which was never delivered. I see that I must
give what I most need. "Yes, I am giving him up."
Then she added, no doubt in answer to her own thoughts,
"You see, life is never as good or as bad as one thinks."

We picked up our hands and began to play. At first
she doesn't seem to understand what I want, but then
I smile, and put two fingers to my lips. If I am killed
it is because I love him more than I love any man.
It was a piece of amazing information but the pretty nurse
at the hospital took it away from him. He put the shovel
over his shoulder and walked into the trees. She walked
him away with her, however, as if she had given him now
the key to patience.