Montage


I am watching a film. Many short stories in one long film. As Glenda Jackson I squeeze though tiny roof spaces into a huge, magnificent hotel. Here, people come to meet others, and fall in love. It has many floors, and resembles all at once a cathedral, a shopping mall, a restaurant.

I ask a woman the time.

“Five pm.” She says.

“Don’t forget the five minute rule, if your late by five minutes, they’ll leave. I probably just missed the love if my life, I’m always late, men never wait.”

“You just need a man with no sense of time.” I reply.

She smiles and steps through mirrored doors in the cathedral walls. Up ahead, I see a troupe of children’s entertainers. They look like Dr Seuss characters.
I ask them the time. They don’t know. Machines are forbidden in this part of their story. In fact they have hidden watches inside their hats, where the kids can’t see.

I walk into the next section with them. I become a character with a trunk for breathing that comes from the top of my head, and flows backwards behind me. A little white elephant follows me, grabbing my trunk. It’s annoying. I tell him I can’t breathe when he does that. He pulls too hard, and his trunk rips open. He bleeds to death. I don’t know what I’ll say to his mother.

The next film. Titles roll. A tank moves over urban ground. I watch this on a tv embedded in a brick wall outside. The action is replayed in real life around me. I rewind the film, vehicles reverse. I decide to save this for later.

I walk across a foggy road. A group of men stops me. They are welsh miners, faces black with coal, on bicycles. They are armed. RPGs and AK 47s. They want to know where they are. Manchester, I think. They cycle off to Llangollen, smiling at the thought of beer, sex, and violent revolution.

A Kung Fu school. Different groups are fighting. Armed with a carving knife and a bread knife, I go up against a young guy who looks like an anime. All oversized swords and stupid hair and costume. I realise he will win. He appears to have great technique too. It’s over quickly. I congratulate him on his victory. I walk next door. Mr Miyagi enters from an opposite door. As he hangs his jacket, I throw a knife into his back. A flash of green, and the knife is gone, Mr Miyagi falls onto, then into, the floor.

A shout from next door. Anime boy has lost his skill, his looks. Like killing a vampire, killing Miyage has released his students from skills and belief in violence.

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