Man in Wood

Man in Wood
chapter - Eva and Ade

Monday, 27 August 2012

Tissue of Lies.



‘Everything is a tissue of lies’.  He knew this to be true even if she said it.  Yes she did.  It was the last thing that fell from those brightly painted red lips before leaving that morning for her weekend business trip to Milan or some city that had a cool reputation.  Milan, Prague, Paris, Berlin... in fact it was Reykjavík, Iceland.  Maybe cool, yet certainly cold since she had taken with her, packed away neatly in her Louis Vuitton rolling suitcase the cashmere jacket with rabbit shawl collar from Salvatore Ferragamo that had cost him a fair bit.  Damn near 3 fuckin' grand. A gift from him to her in a signification their seven years of “happy”… oh God no, their harmonious blissful marriage. Anyway destination Reykjavík, Iceland and He was stuck in the grey gloom of south London.  Peckham.

  Two days earlier a comedian type actor, famed for his witty and atypical brand of comedy that had instituted a British type of humour across the globe that perhaps helped the demise of the image of Brits being a little less boring than beans on toast and ‘God save the goddamn Queen, (no disrespect ma’am).  Oh yeah… he had fervently admired this comic in his youth and now quite confusingly faced a deep and rather personal embarrassment for both he and the comic. The comic-stroke-actor-stroke-douchebag, had brazenly stated that London was not the city it used to be and now it was- quote “overrun by newly arrived asylum seeking tax bleeding immigrants”.  At the time of reading this impetuous declaration by the now slightly retarded comic, he had reacted with fury by throwing his copy of the Sunday Times magazine supplement on the toilet floor with utter disgust and then stared blankly at the white of the white wall.  He had long finished what he had to do anyway but he sat so when he would finally decide to leave the throne the seat would go with him for a while- a brief friendship between backside and seat.  It happens. Sometimes.  If it was not an entirely earnest reaction to throw the magazine it was however one of spontaneous polemic makeup.  He himself was of Jewish descendent, his mother’s sister Aunt Becky had told him this when he was nine years old.  He remembered the stale custard cream biscuits that she offered from the cookie jar in the mess of her cramped council flat kitchen. He wanted to watch television.  His favourite TV show was on, Lee Majors in the ‘six million dollars man’.   She told him how her Father had changed his name to avoid being ship off with the rest of his fellow brethrens to that ghoulish camp in Poland.  He felt no connection to his roots, perhaps because his mother had declared his Aunt Becky 'as nutty as a fruitcake', (where are the bloody nuts in a fruitcake?) Unfortunately Aunt Becky could not exactly denounce this indecorous stake from her prim and proper sister, for dozens upon dozens of times through the last decade she had been spotted wandering around shopping centres all over the south of London in nightgown and slipper talking to her long dead husband about the choice of sherry they would buy for their late evening supper and other such unimaginable nonsense.  It would be hash to called Aunt Becky mad but unconventional she certainly was.  Yet now he felt crushed and baffled as his Aunt Becky during the years of her loss.  (For she loved her husband despite the mean and cruel bastard he was known to be). His wife’s claim to be going on another business trip with her communication firm to one of those glamorous cites aforementioned left him uneasy.  He had proof of her regular secretive tryst with the young engineer whom she had met last December at her office Christmas party.  He had witness quite a nauseating scene behind the silver metallic blinds of the glass window in her boss’s office.  He had seen his wife and that chiselled jawed young stud with her tongue searching for something in the depth of his throat, whilst Miss Whitney (rip) belted out from those turbo charged lungs, the ‘I will always love’ you part of the song. That dreadful build up and that piercing voice practically screaming at his fragile soul those terrifying words. 'and IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII will always Love youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!'
All the same she said it as she left that morning.  "Everything is a tissue of lies,” she said.  She was speaking about the news broadcast that played out on BBC radio 4. The war on Terror!  He was thinking about his own mistress or “mistress to be” since he had yet to commit any act that could have that all-knowing finger from the unbounded blue pointing down at him condemning him as an adulator, a fornicator; flee ye from sexual immorality! She was to meet the engineer at Gatwick airport.  He should secretively follow her (he had longed to be a spy ever since Sean Connery don the 007 suit in Goldfinger) and break the engineer bastards neck.  Or shoot his wife with a silencer from room 407 on the 16th floor of the airport hotel.  But perhaps there were no holiday or romantic break to Milan, Prague, Paris, Berlin or Reykjavík… Iceland only existed on the map he told himself. Maybe they do it in a room on the 16th floor of the airport hotel.  Room number 407? No 408…09… what the hell!  
  He would play some golf with his two mates this weekend and then off to the local for a piss-up.  He would tell them about his fantasy mistress adding extra fiction to his fiction. How they did it here and there and how they would do it there and here again, and again so hard in the most ungodliness’ of places.  He even had a face for her.  A cross between Rita Hayworth and Kim Basinger, with the quivering lips of Sue Ellen.  The theme tune, the three-split screen, the changing face of Miss Ellie breaks his daydream. Followed by the piercing sound of high heels of the wooden floor entering the kitchen where he had been sitting staring at his mug of black coffee.  For how long?  Time.  Reality is wrong.  Dreams are for real.  Now where did he hear that?  His coffee is cold.  Confirmation.  Time.  How long had it been sitting there? What had he’d been doing all that time? Time.  Oh dear God. Time oh time oh time. "Leave me alone you tormentor of the innocent. 
She smiles sweetly at him and says something about the taxi waiting outside. He opens his faded leather wallet.  She kisses him on the left cheek and heads for the front door leaving behind a deathly trace of Chanel no 5 in the air. 
That odious scent that emphasizes the delicate material of deceit.
Put it on a tissues.
Smell.


Saturday, 21 July 2012

Niggaz in Paris -Part two



RED HOUSE
Tonight! Saturday July 21st

DJ SILVERDOLLER
UNEVA KNOW
Featuring Mixed Exclusives- DJ LEON
REFUGEES CAMP
Rare Grooves
Forgotten classic of yesteryear


Address-            RED HOUSE
1 bis rue de la forge royale
75011
Paris

Starts-            21.00
http://maninwood.blogspot.fr/

Thursday, 14 June 2012

and what the public say... (nadine 2008)





André Conrad

Je n ai pas eu le temps de te dire le bien que je pensais de ton film.  Je n ai pas été sensible au " cas psychopathologique " qui défie la compréhension, mais au vide du quartier que tu décris, à une totale absence de culture et d activité, confirmée par l architecture, les couloirs, la tristesse des parcs....une oisiveté terrifiante. Mais ce qui m a surpris c est qu au delà du désespoir particulier à un cas et à une micro société veule et violente, tu touches quelque chose d universel, formulée par ton héroïne quand elle est interrogée alors même qu elle va mieux ( scène que tu mets à la fin en contrepoint de son suicide) : elle dit que certains jours. ..et cette fragilité, cette façon de côtoyer l abîme est le lot de tous. C est cela qui fait du film quelque chose d humain, alors même que tous les personnages ont quelque chose d écoeurant. 
Le style, le rythme, le noir et blanc concourent mettre à nu cette situation où le désoeuvrement est plus profond que ce qu un psychologue ou un sociologue en dirait.  La crise est plus profonde et plus revoltante.
  Dans les références cinephiliques, j ai bien sûr pensé  à Robert Bresson ( histoire de Mouchette etc.).
Cela dit on pourrait te demander si ces personnages ne sont pas ( tous) des caricatures et si l impossibilité de trouver un seul personnage qui ne soit pas pénible à voir, n accentue pas artificiellement le sentiment d impasse.
Il reste que le mérite d un tel film est de développer l attention non seulement au mal - être d une personne particulière mais à à la situation de toute personne.
Amitiés. 


Y.
I found in Nadine, your film, something strong, a force, a tension, an emergency, a truth, that exists in every one of my top ten favorite movies:

If, Lindsay Anderson
Kids, Larry Clark, Harmony Korine
Rude Boy, The Clash
Salo ou les 120 journées de Sodome, Pier Paolo Pasolini
Nosferatu, Werner Herzog
Guess who's coming to dinner, Stanley Kramer
La Haine, Mathieu Kassovitz
Bravo, tu es un cinéaste!

Patrick
C'était vraiment tt à fait passionnant pcq j'ai trouvé que sur ce film ( comme ts les premiers, avec bcp d' autobiographie j'imagine) il y avait un vrai langage de cinéaste pour filmer le scénario. Finalement on était tt autant "piégé" par le film que Nadine par son environnement.

Véronique Porret, une amie de Grenoble, psychiatre, psychanalyste, critique de films, sinophile…
Merci pour cette émouvante critique, du dedans. Merci. Cela a dû être la fête après...

Lydie Zawislak
heureusement que j'avais donné mes impressions à Marine avant de lire ton message et ta critique du film que je trouve très juste


Laetitia Launiau
Je suis tout à fait d'accord avec toi. Le sentiment de mal à l'aise du départ s'est très vite estompé. Il n'y avait rien de "gore", tout était suggéré. J'ai trouvé ce film extrêmement poétique et, comme tu le dis si bien, très photogénique. J'ai été voir une très belle exposition de photos au Frac de Sélestat où l'on voyait une série de clichés représentants des immeubles HLM. J'ai retrouvé la même perfection artistique dans l'effet visuel de la caméra de Ian. J'ai trouvé aussi que la mollesse de Nadine, la lenteur de certaines scènes, représentait bien la pesanteur de ce système de vie dans certaines banlieues. On était à Londres, mais l'on aurait tout aussi bien pu se trouver dans des quartiers d' Hautepierre, de Clichy sous bois ou de Moscou. J'ai trouvé ce film très juste, extrêmement réaliste, tout en voguant dans des sphères surréalistes. Les scènes de vie intérieures étaient très authentiques.
Je pense que tu peux être fier de ton gendre et de ta fille. Je leur souhaite une grande réussite.

Jacques Weiss- psychiatre, psychanalyste, époux de Chantal et sa galerie
 Après un très beau film d'un jeune cinéaste , une très belle critique.
 Beaucoup de choses de qualité dans ce film , la photographie, le découpage, le montage, les gros plans , un vrai langage cinématographique,  et  parfois même les mots sont importants;J'ai pensé à Ken Loach , à Bresson aussi, à quelque chose de la nouvelle vague française (mais dont le maître est effectivement Bresson, que j'ai découvert il y a peu sur dvd...!!)
 Et puis , je ne peux pas m'en empêcher,excuse -moi, mais j'ai le sentiment que la fille du père a fait fort en épousant un jeune cinéaste prometteur  dont le discours  cinématographique est comme une réponse ou un dialogue avec le père.
A bientôt et encore Bravo aux jeunes



« Je me suis décidée à aller voir le film malgrè le sujet un peu hard...nous
étions 5 dans la salle, 2 personnes sont sorties au bout d'une demi-heure...
Je ne me lancerai pas dans de grands commentaires qui paraîtraient bien
insipides au regard des vôtres...juste quelques mots pour dire que j'ai trouvé
que c'était bien filmé, que l'actrice est formidable vu la difficulté du rôle
qu'elle joue; merci au violoncelle qui vient juste après des scènes très dures
et qui moi m'a apaisée...c'est un film fort, c'est un film à voir. »

Jeanne-Hélène
Good morning,sir !
I must say I was very impressed to meet the Director and one of the actor of the movie. It was really unexpected. It can probably explain why I wasn't talking a lot. I really love Cinema, and when I was outside and in another street, I felt like asking two thousand questions. But my friend is very shy and didn't really want to do it, because she couldn't speak very well. Anyway, now I regret my silence. Moreover, I'm usually not able to speak about a movie the very day I see it. I need to wait for the day after to really know what I thought about it. Anyway I just want to say that I appreciated this movie and it's a useful change compared to what I usually watch.

Have a nice day and I hope your career will be very long

Arthur, gavroche de banlieue. 
J'ai trouvé beaucoup de qualités, à ton oeuvre, je ne parle pas de, mise en scène, montage,rythme,direction photographique,c'est parfait!,on voit dés le début que tu est perfectionniste et réalisateur de talent.Dans le sens qu'on ne voit aucune erreur. y compris,dans certaines plans fixes risquées ,qui"forcent" a écouter et regarder, Nadine et elle seule parlant aux autres, mais tu conserve toujours la caméra sur son visage(celà frise la rigidité,ça ne l'a pas fait, et c'est finalement payant).Cette façon de tourner s'impose par son caractère,en tout cas sa rareté.Trés vite on en apprécie,le choix et l'utilité.
Ce le film est toujours dans mes pensées,à l'heure ou j'écris.Je peux encore voir très précisément certaines scènes,tant la symbolique "musicale et répétitive visuellement de certains repères" ,fixe, le spectateur,du début à la fin du film.Quand à La fin, vraiment surprenante,étrangement innatendue(pour moi):superbement maitrisée,à tous niveaux,je pèse mes mots. Bien que qu'une personne parte définitivement, cela surprend mais ne rends pas frustrés par la mort qui existe et qui existera (la preuve s'il en est, les spectateurs ont mis du temps le temps de remixer images et sentiments,avant d'applaudir,tant la dualité des messages,à la fin du film,étaient, douce et mortelle à la fois . De ce départ volontaire de ce cauchemar qu'elle vit,c'est enfin là que l'on peut mesurer l'ampleur de sa souffrance. Donner une fin à ce film,a dû etre difficile ,en tout les cas Bravo, qu'il est réussi ! Tout en étant poétique,réaliste, violent,et politique,tu nous donne une angleterre non caricaturée, qui va etre la notre.
On vole entre Le contraste permanent, arbres, eaux ruisselantes, architechtures surdimensionnées,verdure, et coins dangereux, très bien suggerée par les espaces, et le rythme alternatif et hypnotique qui plane.
les sentiments, les réactions et les relations humaines sont là : sous forme de scènes,cohérentes,véritables,
sans concessions, spacieuses,ou confinées, changantes..., et meme un un moment drôle!!pour un film dramatique, c'est une marque d'aisance qui laisse prommettre une marge confortable d' évolution,avec La scène "biblique" à la "Tarantino" de la punition par, et du beau-père,ponctue aussi intelligement le film.
Mais la violence de la vie d'adolescente de jeune fille, devenant de plus en plus seule, et enfin rejetée, ni forte, ni faible, ni lâche, elle ne trouvera pas, même pas avec l'homme qu'elle a choisi d'aimer, ce qu'elle aurait souhaité entendre.
Mais c'est souvent les plus proches, qui nous font le plus de mal...
Après avoir goûté au plus abject de la puissance de l'homme, la force physique contre les femmes,et "s'en est fini de ses rêves de paix et d'amour", et, de vie .
Bravo.Ce film parle a l'adolescent qui est toujours en nous,et nous engage tous sentimentalement et intellectuellement.Tu peux être fièr de ce nouveau long-métrage,et mérite,encouragements,quiétude et inspiration. Au plaisir de ton prochain registre de réalisation.
Que la force et la chance soient avec toi. Sincerely.






Saturday, 2 June 2012

Nadine comes to Paris


Review by: Rick McGrath
Rating: 9 out of 10

“Nadine, is that you? Every time I see you, you’ve got something else to do…” Chuck Berry may have been perplexed about the restless activities of his future bride, but he’s not even in the same tenement flat as Ian Simpson, who actually follows his Nadine as she finds lots of something else to do.
None of it nice.

Shot in a seductive mixture of arthouse cool and cinema verité brutal, Nadine is an incredibly powerful look at what it means when “some day… everything goes wrong” for a psychologically disturbed teen at the ignored end of Britain’s impoverished lower classes. The basic plot was revealed on Quiet Earth when Nadine’s second trailer was posted: "Nadine, a teenage girl who is a regular self-harmer, is subjected to a hostile mother, an abusive stepfather, a drug addicted boyfriend and crude sexual violence from the locals. She lives on a desolate council estate surrounded by nature where she finds occasional solace. However, the profound weight of indifference, injustice and cruelty, proves too much for Nadine, whose life enters a rapid downward spiral."

That’s close enough, although the downward spiral is misleading: Nadine’s story is about her misadventures at the bottom of the spiral, and surely anything else must be up from here. This bone-toss to optimism is one of the odder elements of this excellent movie, as writer/director Simpson has chosen to bookend his drama with short docu-style interviews in which Nadine discusses her life and mulls about the future. In between we get to experience what’s she’s talking about. It’s depressing. It’s shocking. It’s a subculture of aggression and instinctual violence equal to the middle-class antics of the characters stuck in the zoo that is JG Ballard’s classic High-Rise.

Yeah, the plot is cool and the action zips along, but what separates Nadine from your run-of-the-tenement-hopeless-poverty-sucks stories is Simpson’s killer direction and his actor’s incredibly great performances.

Simpson’s sense of style is sensational. Apparently shot in black & white, Simpson has allowed just one colour onto his palate – a dark burgundy red, sort of like dried blood. It’s used subtly and seemingly without specific symbolic sense, on shoes, a car, a nightgown, on white sheer curtains… and often not at all. He uses a wide variety of shots, from very long to lingering close-up, and has an affinity for the long slow zoom and perfectly-paced panoramic pans. He’s also very patient. What’s also impressive is his sense of the restrictive aspect of this nether world, where adults hide alone in alcoholism and race hatred, where kids overlap in drugs, sex and casual violence, and to emphasize the “innerness” of it all Simpson keeps it tight and combustible in claustrophobic rooms, ugly tenement halls and the surrounding roads of South London, breaking only occasionally to meander through a neighbouring park, where Nadine comes to recharge – such a romantic.

Simpson also took a chance by casting nothing but non-actors to fill this movie’s many roles. Believe me, you’ll find this unbelievable if you get to see Nadine. I have no idea how Simpson cajoled these performances out of nothing, but there they are and all you can do is wonder. His greatest find is Lisa Jane Gregory, who plays the hapless Nadine to perfection. She’s amazing, especially as a physical actor, although she can turn on the waterworks and crank the emotions as well. Gregory’s presence is amazing. In her suicidal, self-cutting mode, she’s a walking billboard of defeat. Slouched shoulders, perpetually downcast eyes, knock-kneed legs bursting out from under a miniskirt, pigeon-toed feet shuffling in chunky-soled hooker shoes, broken nails, ragged, greasy hair, complete lack of make-up, and underneath, a simmering aggression, all make Gregory’s Nadine a character to watch and remember. The psychic power of the character comes from her unresolved relationship with her lost father, and Gregory is surprisingly good at conveying that emotion. It’s apparent she unknowingly blames herself, hence the self-mutilation as a form of punishment, and her relationships are all coloured with a kind of self-disgust… perhaps the idea behind Simpson’s sporadic use of spot red throughout the film. Menstrual red? The rest of the cast also does a fine job, but you can see how Simpson has carefully set them up so less acting becomes more acting. Nadine’s “boyfriend” Wayne rarely moves or talks. Not only does this make him more enigmatic (he’s supposed to be an artist), it does away with virtually every amateur fault! This basic technique – keep it simple when you have to – works well with the sparse style and B&W format Simpson has chosen, and actually adds to the vacancy of these people’s lives, where their social status and possibility of escape is so low that any intellectual concerns are completely dominated by the instinctual emotions, by addictions, by the need for action – any action – to postpone a death by boredom.

In this way Nadine covers more cultural ground than the shoes of its heroine. Simpson’s overall landscape of tenement despair allows him to take a good look at other social issues of the poor and the young, such as crime, rascism and morality, and works up his plot to generously reveal the fears and hates of Britain’s version of American white trash, as well as the dog-eat-dog choices of their youthful black neighbours, who may be thugs and drug pushers, but who dress better and have more money. And get most of the white girls. Hmmm, unsurprisingly similar.

Nadine… you’re always doing something else, you wacky outsider. Is that you? This Nadine is, and if you get a chance to hang out for a day or two in her neighbourhood, I’d highly recommend a visit. But don’t stay to long, OK?


Les Dernières Nouvelles d'Alsace
Critique parue dans DNA reflets
nadine
un film de Ian Simpson
avec Lisa Jane Gregory
GB - 2007 - 1 h 15 - VOST


Nadine des esprits

Nadine, deuxième long-métrage de Ian Simpson, un Britannique établi à Strasbourg, entend selon son réalisateur « raconter l’histoire et l’existence solitaire d’une adolescente à travers un récit réaliste et dépouillée ». Ce pitch, comme on jargonne dans les professions de l’audiovisuel, n’est qu’à moitié exact.

Dans les quartiers les moins favorisés du sud de Londres, on y suit le quotidien de cette Nadine fragile, tangente, instable, qui tente désespérément de trouver une raison de survivre entre une mère méchamment hostile, un beau-père abusif et probablement fasciste, un petit ami défoncé, au centre de tous les sévices sexuels et agressions verbales ou physiques qu’on attache à celle qui serait, de notoriété publique, « la pute du quartier ». Nadine promène, le long des rues dévastées, en bordure de voies rapides et de barres d’immeubles grisâtres, sensiblement plus qu’un spleen existentiel : la violence sociale dans toute sa brutalité, cristallisée dans un noir et blanc somptueux et glaçant, nappée parfois d’une suite pour violoncelle de Bach.

Cette pure chronique sociale est à vrai dire la part la moins réussie du film de Ian Simpson : parce qu’il faut, face à ce genre de sujet, choisir son point de vue, et s’y tenir avec une grande résolution. Il y a autour de Nadine, dans ces cadres impeccablement (su)composés et dans cette velléité d’y introduire un peu de transcendance, trop de beauté formelle, ou peut-être de coquetterie, pour que la force du propos n’en pâtisse pas. Est-il bien nécessaire de passer l’image au filtre rouge lorsque Nadine tente pour la énième fois de s’ouvrir les veines ?
Faut-il comprendre que Nadine serait un film raté ? Pas du tout. D’abord parce que la densité de ses comédiens, pour la plupart non-professionnels, suffit presque à elle seule à emporter l’empathie, à donner le ton juste. Mais aussi, mais surtout parce que Ian Simpson offre à sa pauvre héroïne, et au spectateur, de splendides respirations oniriques : au milieu de tout ce désastre urbain, sans explications aucun, apparaissent soudain des troupeaux entiers de biches et de cerfs. Une forêt frémit au vent du soir. Deux bad boys s’y métamorphosent à vue en mendiants magnifiques paraissant sortis des contes de Chaucer. Le film bascule, comme si La Nuit du chasseur s’invitait coeur d’un documentaire sur le nouveau lumpenproletariat du blairisme.

La beauté qui se révèle à ces instants n’a rien à voir avec celle, toujours un peu frelatée, de l’émotion fabriquée. C’est celle, irradiante, d’un regard exact sur ce qui est, et sur ce qui est derrière ce qui est. Il faut faire, pour ses films suivants, confiance dans le cinéaste Ian Simpson.

Jérôme Mallien

Cinéma l’Odyssée - 3 rue des Francs Bourgeois - Strasbourg - 03 88 75 10 47

Saturday, 14 April 2012

MAN IN WOOD (2012)- in production


looks like somebody we know! we love film and so do you!

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Tremble like a flower


She leaves the room turning slightly that doll of a head she wears to offer him a warm yet guarded smile. A lot older than she looked last night, he thought. He sits on the bed and lights one of her extra longs. He looks at his whiskey soaked face in the wardrobe mirror and sighs heavily.
He walks into the hallway where he watches her through the semi open toilet door, peeing; She looks over to the sink and curses for some reason.
She has a coughing fit. Spits something vile between her thighs into the bowl.
There is not much paper.
A bluebottle fly lands on her knee and stays there unnoticed.
He thought about the Bowie song they played at the bar last night. The lyrics ‘if you should fall into my arms and tremble like a flower’
He didn’t know why he thought of that particular verse. He didn’t care much for Bowie. He didn’t care much for music. He didn’t get it. Didn’t understand the dancing, the singing along, and the idol worship. But those lyrics ‘if you should fall into my arms and tremble like a flower’
She wipes between her legs and flushes.

He walks back to the window where he sees an old lady with a cane crossing the street.
The late morning sun shines bright through the lace curtains window the old girl makes it to other side of the street. He smiles.
The sunlight gleams on his face making him momentarily unrecognisable. A phantom
Burning bright.
White.
Light.

He sits in silence beside her on the bed. Sex followed by breakfast that only happened with his ex wife. Burnt toast and marmalade followed by a dose of rowing- how we gonna pay the rent this month?
I’ll get a job.
How many times have I heard that hey?
The interview went well yesterday.
So?
They’re gonna call me back.
Yeah’ she would say’ yeah, when chicken have teeth’ She was French strange expressions but nice accent. That’s why he fell for her. Her accent, her perfect way of touch, her caress, soft gracefully moving hands. Her neck. Her back. And when she smiled.
Bitch.


‘Hey’ she calls. He ignores her. ‘Was I good’. She asks once more revealing a bit of skin through her opened gown.
Yeah.
‘Yeah’ she repeats. ‘Yeah’ ‘I was good’ she says exasperatingly. They sit in silence. She blows a blue thin line from her cigarette before stubbing it out.
‘So what’s your name then?’
He lies. Well it was a name they called him at school all those years ago. They teased him with it and it was not even his name. But it stuck so he chose to use it from time to time.
She laughs and repeats his name again and again shaking her head in disbelief. But it’s cute she says
‘you know why they call me Rita don’t you?’
‘no.
Hayworth. Rita Hayworth, some people say I look like her. I do a bit. What do you think?
‘Yeah. I suppose you do.’
She did a bit.

She removes the belt from her dressing gown and lassoes it around his waist. She calls his name. Playfully she brings the belt up towards his neck pulling him towards her. Again she calls his name in a seductive manner whilst tugging at his neck. He struggles a little. Her gown apart and breast revealed, nipples pointing to the heavens. She laughs as she tugs the belt. That wide mouth of hers with smeared red lipstick and a perfect set of dentures, maybe. He becomes slightly annoyed and pulls away. But she pulls him closer. He looks that wide laughing mouth. He places his hand around her neck and begins to squeeze, softly at first. She laughs and sticks her tongue out mischievously. But he increases the pressure around neck, her eyes larger than usual. She shakes her head from side to side. He has reached a point where there can be no going back. She begins to splutter, gasping for air. He continues to squeeze. Harder. She kicks her legs, kicking the silver breakfast tray off the bed. An orange roll perfectly out the bedroom door and down a couple of steps on the stairs.
He squeezes. Harder. She kicks her legs fighting for her dear life. Foam at the corners of that mouth. Beads of sweat settled on forehead.
The smell of urine.
She kicks struggles, eyes bulging.
And he squeezes.
Squeezing the very life out of her. Until nothing. Stillness.
One lifeless hand hangs of the bed.
He sits on the floor head down between his thighs.
The sixth commandment.
‘I’ll have time to think about that one’ he thought.
Then that song.
‘tremble like a flower’

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

that stands outside


She gradually steps out of the bed pulling the sheet around her nakedness as she does so. The few minutes that she had laid there on her back while her husband routinely went about his business was mercifully done. He dresses for work, his colourful yellow tie with the characteristically dull office suit adding an extra touch of unattractiveness she had previously been unaware of. He splashes some common cologne on his cheeks looking quite smug at his reflection through the mirror on the dressing table, the new Ikea dresser which just as her husband she had grown to dislike. I mean neither was unkind to her.
‘How do I look? He proclaims with astonishing assurance.
The same as you always look, utterly boring and lifeless.
She bites on her lower lip before answering.
‘Great’.
‘I’d best be going. I’ll be late and I’m not project manager just yet and even if I were it would be of principal importance that I for one should …
His words float pointlessly around the room feeding those walls that may have ears.
He walks over to her and kisses her softly.
He says something funny that makes her force a smile eager to give momentum to his exist. He kisses on the forehead and calls her a silly nickname, one I fail to remember but certainly nauseating.
At the bedroom door he says goodbye once again calling her by that silly nickname. She throws him a half-smiles. He hesitates at the door before finally leaving. She faces the door until she hears him take the stairs, close the front door, cross the cobbled driveway, start the engine of the company car and hit the gas peddle.
She throws herself back on the bed eyes closed at first before looking up at the forever-white ceiling, it is the forever-ness of it all that brings on the sudden bout of depression.
Her left hand caresses the cool of the bedroom wall above the bed head.

Under the shower she thinks about the hands of her lover as she washed away the remains of her husband’s frequently abhorrent scent. What was it about his hands that she loved so much? She checks for lumps though usually afraid. The power shower drowns out the sounds of activity in the house to enhance her escape into fantasy. She knows nothing about that that stands outside.
She bends to pick up the green bottle of hair conditioner and thinks about those hands.