I got a try-out for a swimming part in a film and found myself alone in the pool, playing basketball, making every shot. A woman appeared, slim and beautiful, and fouled me, keeping her hand on mine, and then I was trying to get the ball, and her suit was undone. More people arrived and I began to forget my lines, and was told as much in the long debrief, that I had started well and then lost momentum, and that there might be a next time once the group went on tour in Australia and New Zealand. I found my father, long dead, having a cigarette on the back patio and couldn’t understand what he was doing there. “I stay up to 11:00 every once in a while.” The dog was there too, and I confessed that it could speak, saying the same thing again and again: “Smoking again?” I felt bad about him being dead, stealing his wife, because she was so beautiful and now all mine.
In an attempt to confront our demons, we are compelled to drum up the worst we can imagine, images that terrorizes us in our dreams, and reproduce those in film for all to see. I am haunted by images of a man hurled into a pit of alligators, a woman’s head floating in a jar and a basement where evil lurks. Seeing these things doesn’t do us any good; it isn’t a relief to the images out, but instead raises the stakes, inspiring more horror to behold. As Cormac McCarthy wrote in The Road: Just remember that the things you put into your head are there forever.
They were big men, both yelling at each other, being held apart. And then the bigger one got tired of being insulted and came around. The first guy suddenly shrank back and became tiny, his face full of a fear, saying he had to go to the airport as the second inflated his fist and choke-held him into pathetic submission.
It was just a show. We were all sitting there to be entertained, and the guy in front of me pulled out a camera to post it to his feed. I told him, in no uncertain terms, to put it away. He didn’t like that, offering a sarcastic apology, and we both missed the bows.