Cormac McCarthy's Vermiculite Trout

January 10, 2010 By: Marshall Cutchin

The Road

Image via Wikipedia

As the new movie “The Road” fills theaters this winter, it’s worth mentioning again how Cormac McCarthy uses trout as a bookend for the bleak, but stunning novel the movie is based on. This is the full last paragraph of the novel (a spoiler, but not for fly fishers):
“Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional. On their backs were vermiculite patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.”
The Road on Amazon.

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