A couple of nights ago I dreamt that I was in a clearing in a woods sat at a table with some other people. In front of me I had the narrative to a play I was in. I knew that the lines I had to read were in the form of a poem. I couldn’t learn them because I didn’t understand the words. The rest of the cast were cross with me because they could see that I intended to have my script in front of me when I was sat on the stage.
The reason why I had this dream was all thanks to the computer. The clearing in the woods was on one of the postcards I’d been preparing during the day. Then, when I was having a stroll around my blog friends I came across a word I’d never seen before and had to look it up. Next, I popped via the comments to a new blog where I learnt that the lady who used to organise the poetry&words tent at the Glastonbury festival had died. Strange the things that stay in your head.
When I woke up I remembered a play I was in in my early teens; I was the narrator in The Pied Piper of Hamlin by Robert Browning (I didn’t remember it was by him!), I tested myself and I remembered the first verse. This took me on in my thoughts to a Canadian film, *The Sweet Hereafter, with Sir Ian Holm about a school bus which crashes and kills most of the children in the village. The poem runs through the film (The survivor used to baby-sit and read the poem to her young charges.). Sir Ian Holm is the insurance investigator who is sent to decide whether the survivors should be awarded any money. He is also trying desperately to reconnect with his daughter, who is a drug addict, at the same time. It’s a very sad but beautiful film. I remember the lady who drove the school bus saying that when she picked up the children for school every morning she felt like she was picking berries and putting them into her basket. If you haven’t seen it I recommend it.
*Adapted from the novel by Russell Banks