Seven last lines meme

It’s still way too hot. I’m avoiding homework. Hence, the conditions are perfect for starting up a meme. I’d been thinking about literary last lines, and started pulling books off the shelves and scribbling down my favorite final lines, and the result looked too much like an amusing quizzy thing not to share.

So here are seven last sentences, chosen sort of randomly (one is from a novel, three are from short stories, and three are from poems). If you want to guess any of the sources, post them in the comments. If you’ve got favorites of your own, consider yourself tagged to continue the meme elsewhere.

  1. "I had Barbara," she said, and began to move ahead of Mrs. Slade toward the stairway.
  2. They hand in hand with wandering steps and slow
    Through Eden took their solitary way.
  3. Overhead, without any fuss, the stars were going out.
  4. I am not I: pity the tale of me.
  5. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead.
  6. "Well, I’m back," he said.
  7. Out of this same light, out of the central mind,
    We make a dwelling in the evening air,
    In which being there together is enough.

Have at them! I’ll post identifications after a while.

9 Responses to “Seven last lines meme”

  1. brd says:

    How about Paradise Lost for #2?
    I’m at a loss on the others. How about Gibran for #7?

  2. Amanda says:

    #7 isn’t Gibran, but #2 is indeed Paradise Lost!

  3. Mike says:

    #3 is Clarke, right? And I know #6, and it feels like Hemingway, but I’m thinking it’s not. Steinbeck? McCarthy?

  4. Amanda says:

    Yes! Someone got #3!
    #6 is none of the above. Actually, Hemingway would probably have hated the work it comes from.

  5. 6 is Tolkien, of course. #7 feels like Dante, but I thought all of his ended with “stars” somewhere.
    1 is Wharton, maybe?

  6. Mike says:

    Shit. I knew #6 was so overwhelmingly familiar, but couldn’t place it. I guess I’ve lost whatever scant geek cred I might have at one point held. (But of course Dorothea got it immediately. 🙂
    #5 is so purple — but, OMG, isn’t that the last out-swirling sentence of The Dead? It is. It totally is. And it’s so much one of those sentences that you can’t ever read or encounter out of context, so to see it so — well — nice one, Amanda. Startling.
    Mine are here.

  7. Amanda says:

    Yup. #6 is the last line of The Return of the King. And yes, Dorothea, #1 is Wharton (her short story “Roman Fever”) — nice catch! #5 is totally “The Dead” — you’re right, Mike, it is kind of purple in comparison with the rest of that paragraph.
    #7 isn’t Dante, but, now that I think about it, it does sound rather Dantean. Which is actually really interesting.

  8. Hank says:

    It’s Stevens.

  9. Amanda says:

    Stevens it is!