Thursday, January 06, 2005

A Poem, A Book, and Two Films

A poem by Rumi says, “This is not the real reality. The real reality is behind the curtain. In truth, we are not here. This is our shadow.”

No wonder those of us sometimes in touch with the real reality sometimes feel on the edge of this other one. With the veil parted but only us to see it, no wonder that these other people being so serious about this play of shadows seems strange to us.

I’m reading The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire by Deepak Chopra. Early on in the book he says this: “The question is: Would you recognize a miracle if you saw one?” Isn’t that just elegant?! He goes on, “If you recognized it, what would you do? And if you could somehow orchestrate your own miracles, which miracles would you choose?”

What with the flu and it generally being winter, we’ve rented a number of films lately. Some were surprisingly good, like Almost Famous which I didn’t expect much from but thoroughly enjoyed (could have been the Southern Rock in the soundtrack) and Something’s Got to Give for some older romantic comedy since I get so tired of everything being between twenty year olds.

Two, however, were very much alike and yet totally different. Lost in Translation got all sorts of good press. It follows two Americans in Tokyo for a few days, exploring their alienation, boredom, longing for connection. Station Agent focuses on three characters in very rural New Jersey who find connection in spite of themselves. The films are similar in how they look at the dailiness of their lives, in how they basically lack any plot, how it is the small things that are highlighted and not the big things films more often go for. They are dissimilar in that Lost in Translation totally sucked wind, was b-o-r-i-n-g – because its people were boring, had no lives or hopes of lives ever anywhere amen. The characters in Station Agent were interesting themselves and so even watching a three car train go by every couple of hours became interesting to do with them. Translation pretends its characters make a connection in the end but all that connects is their lonely longing – it isn’t relieved by any real connection between them. In Station Agent the characters get connected, become friends, even though that is just a small thing, no fireworks, no kisses. But it is real reality. Even for a film. Station Agent is definitely worth seeing.


Littlebash said...

Your right, that is a really elegant line ''Would you recognize a miracle if you saw one?''...I often wonder how many miracles go on around us each day and we are too blind to even notice how beautiful, perfect and miraculous things are..we just accept without ponderment (is that a word)

My recent discovery is that dreaming is a miracle. I have started to keep a dream journal and its just incrediable what my subconcious can conjour up..

the Contrary Goddess said...

Dreams are powerful things. The BEST book to help with dreams, and I say that having discarded as totally useless a great many, is Every Dreamer's Handbook by Will Phillips. It is practical. It is useful. Ut is absolutely the best dream book.