Saturday, February 26, 2005

The End

Gentle visitors, something of a brain-teaser this one. (Note: the title is important.)

"Could this really be the end?" As she watched him walking slowly into the setting sun Marilyn thought, "Could he really be leaving? "

"Au revoir, my love. You will see; all will be well."

"Philippe! Philippe!" she cried.

He backed away from her. "If you truly love me, then you must trust me, and let me go. I must go."

"No," she cried, "No!" She rushed to cling to him.

"If we are to be together forever, then I must go," he said, pushing her away.

"Oh, Philippe, we must never be parted." She flung herself into his manly arms.

"You and I, together until birth. La Jeune Vie. While others grow old together, we will grow younger. We sail against the current. Do you now see?" said Philippe, taking her hand and pressing it fervently to his lips.

Yes, she thought, I remember all the confusion between us at the beginning. She had thought it was just a language barrier: in truth, it was something more. The light began to dawn in her mind.

"Anyone who comes too close -- whose life becomes, how do you say, intertwined with mine -- is captured by the same curse. That," said Philippe, "Is what makes my secret so dark, so terrible!"

"I’ve seen none of this. But," she said, shaking her head, her golden locks falling around her sculpted neck, "How could that be. "

"For me, everything is in reverse. Sentences, thoughts, music, palindromes – life itself! It is my curse. " Philippe pressed the heels of his hands to his temples.

"I don’t understand. What are you talking about," she said, almost in tears.

"It is my dark secret, PND. Do you not see? Oui, oui, oui!" Philippe stared at her, his eyes smoldering in a mixture of passion and bitter disappointment.

"You, who saved my life, who taught me to live again, taught me to love again. No matter how dark or terrible it is, it could never separate us. Dark secret?" Marilyn repeated in astonishment.

"This is my one dark secret that I could never tell you." He covered his face. "I would sooner die than leave you – you might as well tear out my heart. Mon cher," said Philippe, tears glistening in his eyes. "It is PND – Profound Narrative Dyslexia."

"After all this," she found herself saying aloud, "How could you possibly leave me."

After all the love, after all the laughter, the danger, the adventure. After all we have been through, she thought. Philippe stood a few paces hence, staring at the ground, his broad shoulders sagging. Marilyn’s world was turned inside-out, upside-down. Philippe pulled away, and said, "I must go, and you must go back."

Yet, suddenly, everything changed. They embraced. Could it be that the forces that sought to keep them apart had been secretly defeated? The setting sun shone down on the pair, like a blessing, as they walked, hand in hand to the crest of the hill.


Blogger Ned said...

Very clever. From end to beginning, a delight.

2/26/2005 08:23:00 PM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

Clever indeed. They say that Merlin lived backwards and became younger as time went on. And then there is the soundbite right at the end of one of the Beatles' LPs (remember them?) that said, "Push it round the other way, push it round the other way." Of course, there were many theories as to what it said if you actually did as they suggested...

2/26/2005 09:18:00 PM  
Blogger Gone Away said...

And I nearly forgot. The immortal words of Bob Dylan: "Ah, but I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now..."

2/26/2005 09:19:00 PM  
Blogger Remainderman said...

Natural enough for such a backwards fellow as your humble Contributor.

2/26/2005 10:07:00 PM  
Blogger Harry said...

You are the Mick Jagger of writers.

2/27/2005 01:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Barry Manilow said...

I would have said, "he's the Neil Sedaka..."

2/27/2005 08:03:00 AM  
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