The Door at the End of the Universe

Slava Gerj/

When the door at the end of the universe came into view, the old man dropped to his knees and cried. How long had it been since he’d first set out in search of it? Across countless places and ages, he’d journeyed, and now, at long last, the door lay within reach, embedded in the side of a barren world-sized mountain.

The old man could feel the wind on his face, whipping the cracked and blistered skin that stretched over his ancient skull like parchment. At that moment, he bore the full weight of his age and dreamed of how good it would feel to be young again. But that great cosmic clock in the sky turned in only one direction, and while death might have spared him, time most certainly had not.

There was little vigor left in those rheumatic joints, but somehow, the old man rose to his feet; somehow, the old man stepped forward across the grass and the rocks, keeping the long sought-after door within his sight.

“Hello,” he whispered in a voice like windswept reeds. “I’ve come to meet with you at last.”

And with a gnarled, unsteady hand, he reached for the door handle and listened for the voice that had called to him so long ago.

Welcome, came the reply, profound and immediate, a soundless ripple across space and time. Long have you fought for your place in the world beyond, and now you may open the door. Now you may step over the threshold, and in so doing receive new life.

The old man reflected on his journey and on all the adventures he’d had along the way, and though his path had been fraught with endless perils and suffering, he was grateful for the change wrought inside of him, for it was a necessary precursor to the life yet to come.

What sort of existence awaited him on the other side? He didn’t know, but he wished with all his heart to find out. And so, with the last of his strength, he pulled on the door’s handle, and when it swung open, when the stars of that other world revealed themselves at last, the old man smiled, ready to embrace his eternal reward.

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4 thoughts on “The Door at the End of the Universe”

  1. It is always so wonderfully amazing, how you are able to draw such depths of emotion from us readers in such a short piece. Thank you!

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