Never Endings

I read a writers suggestion on how to flesh out a novel synopsis: write the opening scene one day, the ending scene the next, fill in the major plot points each of the next few days. He may have suggested additional assignements on subsequent days. I zoned out after a bit so I’ll never know.

I drifted from his instructions because I got to thinking about endings. I don’t write them.

Jackson slapped shave-and-haircut on the metal roof of his car and slid in behind the wheel. I ducked to see him through the passenger’s side. Without thinking, I tapped two-bits on the sun-dried molding of the car door.

“Up or down?” I reached inside for the handle.

“Leave it.”

“This isn’t good-bye,” I said.

Jackson turned halfway to me and leaned over like he was driving and keeping one eye on the road or like a blind person looking with his ears–eyes drifting into space. I wanted to lean in. I wanted to touch his face. I wanted to kiss him. I wanted to make him believe me when I said it, so I said it again. “This isn’t good-bye.”

He chunked the handle on the steering column to D. His foot became heavy on the pedal, and I felt the car moving forward taking my arms with it for a while and pivoting my boots in the gravel. I recalled the agonizing sound when the wind rises from a different direction than the fan on a windmill already rests.

The sound of slow tires on a gravel road broke my heart.

272 words on day 595