Posts Tagged ‘ending’

Spell for Ending Well

Who’s ever heard

of a silent spell?

Isn’t it supposed to rhyme?

Shouldn’t it contain

the eye of something,

the tail of something else,

some leaves, some poison,

a cauldron, a fire,

and a whole lot of stirring?

But this spell can’t be manufactured.

All it wants is your attention.

All it wants is for you to feel

how it feels to end.

It wants you to lean

into loss and let it do

its slow work on you.

It doesn’t offer a magic word—

no word is magic enough

to do what must be done.

Which is to trust

the vanishing nature of things.

Which is to let the body

grasp and grasp and grasp

until at last it is ready

to release. Any spell

for ending well

knows its own uselessness.

It knows the importance

of silence. It knows

that anyone who would look up

a spell for ending well

already has exactly what they need.

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Next Draft


Endings are what give stories meaning.

            —Erin Morgenstern, The Starless Sea



If the ending

is what gives

a story meaning,


then may we

never learn what

this story means.


I don’t want

to reach anything

like a vague


ever after. Here,

take what’s left

of my blank—


please feel free

to lose our

table of contents,


rearrange our index,

renumber our pages,

revise the tension,


and if we

near a denouement,

then my dear


let’s have stacks

of pink erasers

on hand, ready


to sacrifice any

resolution that might

be goodbye—know


I would rather

struggle with you

in the messy


middle than ever

arrive at the



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