Happy Endings


Photo by Patti Black on Unsplash

Little kids like stories with happy endings. In fact, young children find stories with unhappy endings quite disturbing. But, for many, at some point, that changes.

Adolescents often prefer stories with sad or disturbing endings. They can evoke stronger, more lasting feelings and memories. They don’t cease to be disturbing, but after a certain age, we learn to cope with the immediate discomfort of feeling disturbed, and then these stories make us think.

For some reason, the phrase ‘Happy Endings’ popped into my head today and it got me thinking. Happy or not, there are no endings. Stories may have endings, but they are just beginnings for new stories. In fact, that’s exactly how fantasy series are written. If one book has a happy ending, it is quickly dismantled to create tension in the sequel.

Even within a single story or novel, readers are kept engaged through twists, where the fortunes of principal characters change, sometimes quite dramatically, and often several times before the end of the story is reached.

Happy or unhappy, nothing lasts forever.

The Elusive Ending

Longed for events,

are they happy endings?

That remains to be seen,

for first we must ask

what happy endings mean.

Every story began long before

Once Upon A Time,

and will continue long after,

the end of the last chapter.

Agony to ecstasy, sorrow to joy,

the mood of a story oscillates.

Swelling and ebbing like the tide as,

a storyteller surfs the waves.

To end the ride on a crest or trough,

is just a choice the artist makes.

But you can keep riding the wave,

to wherever your imagination takes.

Endings are never as final,

as sometimes they may seem,

for a year may end, or even a life,

but time is a perineal stream,

a spectator to yesterdays’ memory,

as well as tomorrow’s dream

Tags: imagination, kids, fantasy, stories, poetry