The End

by David Lehman

The day Graham Greene died
I didn’t know he had died
but months before I’d written
a poem and called it “The End
of the Affair” stealing his title
and on this April day in 1991
I went to the Blue Fox bookstore
which no longer exists
on Aurora Street in Ithaca
and bought “The End of the Affair”
thinking it was time I read it
and I started reading it right away
it was great he really knew adultery
and I still remember the surprise
when you find out whom Bendrix
loses Sarah to, the one rival he
could never hope to vanquish,
the God who answered her prayer
I stayed up all night reading
reached the end and the next day
on the radio he died

Published on May 1, 2017