It Was The End

Contributor: Ken Sparling

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The road came to an end. There was a small white sign. Beyond that, there was a dirt trail, and she set out to walk it. It wound between high ridges. There was a river. She had never seen a place like this.

I could never find the words to say the things I felt, and the situation today was no different. I removed my monocle from my left eye and looked away from the book I was reading. A window was open somewhere, although it seemed to me that it was not the time of year to be opening windows. Cold air touched my ankles and wrists and my chin and ears. The tip of my nose was very cold. I lifted the monocle back to my eye and looked again to the book. I read a sentence silently, to myself. It was as much as I could take in all at once, a single sentence (more than I could take in, in fact) so I looked up again and let the monocle fall on its chain and dangle before me like a prisoner in a noose. It dangled and caught the light and I saw white spots on the wall across from me where the light shot through the monocle and bent into strange blurry light beings scrambling over the wall like small creatures trying to escape.

My phone changed everything for me. It reformulated my entire life. It restructured the grammar of my existence. I slept on a piece of foam on the kitchen floor, waiting for the light of day to slither through the cracks in the wooden blinds.

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Ken Sparling has six published novels. His first, DAD SAYS HE SAW YOU AT THE MALL (Knopf, 1996) has just been reissued by Mudluscious.
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