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The end of the affair*


In the movie version of Graham Greene’s, The End of the Affair, the heroine asks her lover, whose life with a prayer she’s saved, and thus sworn off in that bargain with God, “Does love end if we don’t see each other?”

“No,” her lover tells her factually, with care, as if lighting a match that will fire a slow-burning candle in church. And with his fuse of solace and sentence, she turns from her lover.

Later, risking a return to him, fate, chance, perhaps the wrath or whim of God, thwarts her, keeps her from her one worldly desire, her true love. Yet as promised, love for her does not really end but merely changes as if from fluid to gas.


“If God exists, why not give us a sign?” he asks after the movie.
“Believing in God is like believing in your parents,” June says.

She tells him she believes that the dead will exist in the universe as dispersed energy.

Del says “If we both died right now I guarantee we’d both end up in the same place.”

“I didn’t mention heaven or how we might get there.” She smiles while a very serious look settles from his brow on down. Up top there are wrinkles as if it’s the mechanism he’s using to control the rest of his face.

*cannabalized another poem of mine for my novel-still-in-progress

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