The degree of closure in Henry James' novel "Wings of the Dove" left the reader confused, unsure of what had happen or what would happen in the future.
The last line of the book "We shall never be again as we were" opens a whole new line of thought instead of closing the book with a final statement.  Though the reader is fairly sure that Kate has left Densher they are not certain.  Is Densher really in love with Milly's memory or is Kate just saying so?  As Kate puts it "...don't speak of it as if you couldn't be.  I could be in your place..."  James book takes the reader into the heart of the matter and once the reader has reached that place they can not wrap it up in a neat little package and simply walk away, but instead finds that they will always carry a piece with them.  While the reader feels some things to be true they can not be certain as to the end result of the book.  The only thing that the reader can be certain about is believing that Milly is dead and that she has affected everyone's life, including the reader, leaving many questions behind.  Not the least of these is what would the reader have done in her, or any of the other characters, position.  The motive behind James' doing this is not easy to pinpoint, however it is fairly certain  that the result is that the book becomes stuck in the readers'  minds, playing over and over much like a song that gets stuck in one's head.
F.O. Mattiessen said about "Wings of the Dove" "that single work where his characteristic emotional vibration seems deepest and where we may have the sense, therefore, that we have come to 'the very soul' ".  As was James' intent, that when one reaches the very soul of a great piece of work it is impossible to forget it.
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