Save the Last Page for Me

We choose what gives us meaning. I

chose you.  That’s why

when people ask

me to unmask

and tell them if I’m ‘happy’, they

head off astray:

that’s not the glue.

But what I knew –

in the first minute, when we met

(part pledge, part threat) –

was that our text

defines, connects.


Of course, it’s only when you turn

the last page, learn

its backward view,

say farewell too,

that you can fully understand

an author’s plan.

So bugger books

and how we’ll look

to hooked, impatient readers who

will hurry through

to reach the end.

Leave that unpenned.

Original version published in Staple New Writing, Summer 1997.